Authors oppose Amazon control of .book websites

Mar 11, 2013 by Glenn Chapman
Groups representing US authors and publishers have called on the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers to deny online retailer Amazon exclusive rights to websites ending with .book, .author, or .read.

Groups representing US authors and publishers called Monday on the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers to deny online retailer Amazon exclusive rights to websites ending with .book, .author, or .read.

ICANN is considering nearly two thousand requests for new web address endings, ranging from the general (.shop) to the highly specialized (.motorcycles).

Many of the requests are from large companies such as Apple, Mitsubishi and IBM—with Google alone applying for more than 100, including .google, ., and .lol—Internet slang for "laugh out loud."

Seattle-based Amazon.com, maker of Kindle tablets, has applied for generic (gTLDs) including .book, .author, and .read.

"We strongly object to ICANN's plans to sell the exclusive top-level domain rights for generic book-industry terms," president Scott Turow said in a filed objection.

"Placing such generic domains in private hands is plainly anticompetitive, allowing already dominant, well-capitalized companies to expand and entrench their market power," Turow said. "The potential for abuse seems limitless."

The guild represents more than 8,000 published authors in the United States.

In its stated opposition to Amazon getting control of .book, the noted the Internet retailer has expressed its intent to tightly control the domain in pursuit of its business goals.

"Granting exclusive control of a closed registry to any one entity, especially a private company interested in exploiting the domain solely for business purposes, does a disservice to ICANN's broader intents," AAP general counsel Allan Adler said on the group's website.

The objections came as Google sent word to ICANN that it is revising its applications for .app, .blog, .cloud and .search to domains to indicate Google would make those addresses available for others to use.

"We understand that there is particular sensitivity within the Internet community about certain broad terms that serve as industry descriptors," Google chief information officer Ben Fried said in comments emailed to ICANN and posted in a forum on the ICANN.org website.

"The best user experience for these broad industry terms likely include the opportunity for users to access a variety of service providers."

said it still endorsed the plan for "close generic" domain names and called for the ICANN approval process to proceed "unfettered."

California-based ICANN says the huge expansion of the Internet, with some two billion users around the world, half of them in Asia, means new names are essential.

There are currently just 22 generic Top-Level Domains, or gTLDs, in use, including .com and .org.

Explore further: Survey concludes Internet access should be a human right

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

ICANN chief to leave at end of term

Aug 17, 2011

The head of the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN), the global body which manages the technical infrastructure of the Web, has announced he will not seek another term.

Website address 'revolution' on hold

Apr 27, 2012

The Internet domain name "revolution" was on hold Friday due to a flaw that let some aspiring applicants peek at unauthorized information at the registration website.

Website address 'revolution' back in motion

May 22, 2012

The Internet domain name "revolution" was back in action on Tuesday with the agency in charge of website addresses once again taking applications for online neighborhoods breaking the ".com" mold.

Internet domain name expansion comes under fire

Dec 08, 2011

A plan to expand the number of Internet domain names came under fire in the US Congress on Thursday, a day after the head of the Federal Trade Commission said it could potentially be a "disaster."

Recommended for you

UN moves to strengthen digital privacy (Update)

12 hours ago

The United Nations on Tuesday adopted a resolution on protecting digital privacy that for the first time urged governments to offer redress to citizens targeted by mass surveillance.

Spotify turns up volume as losses fall

12 hours ago

The world's biggest music streaming service, Spotify, announced Tuesday its revenue grew by 74 percent in 2013 while net losses shrank by one third, in a year of spectacular expansion.

Virtual money and user's identity

19 hours ago

Bitcoin is the new money: minted and exchanged on the Internet. Faster and cheaper than a bank, the service is attracting attention from all over the world. But a big question remains: are the transactions ...

User comments : 1

Adjust slider to filter visible comments by rank

Display comments: newest first

Caliban
not rated yet Mar 12, 2013
Maybe Amazon.HOG?

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.