One senator is on a mission to make sure you never see “YourName.sucks” in your browser.
Sen. Jay Rockefeller (D-WV) wrote a letter Wednesday calling on the Internet Corporation For Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN), which regulates top-level domains (gTLDs) like “.com” and “.net,” to deny an application for a “.sucks” domain. That body is working toward expanding possible domain names beyond traditional suffixes to things like “.sexy” and “.vacations.”
Rockefeller is concerned that a “.sucks” domain could be bought up to defame individuals and businesses, forcing those people and companies to “pay ongoing fees to prevent seeing the phrase ‘sucks’ appended to their names on the Internet.”
The senator notes in his letter that three companies already applied for the “.sucks” domain and one, Vox Populi Registry, has begun accepting trademark reservations for up to $25,000. That’s “little more than a predatory shakedown scheme,” he wrote.
Catherine Thompson is a senior editor for Talking Points Memo in New York City. She came to the site in 2013 and reported on national affairs. Previously, she worked as a research assistant to investigative reporter Wayne Barrett. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.