The XXX Top-level domain

Thursday, June 2, 2005 by darco
Posted in ,

While watching the news this morning, I heard an absurd idea. To help "protect the children", there will soon be an "XXX" top-level domain for sites which would contain information which might be "harmful to minors".

The idea is that instead of having examplesexsite.com, you would have examplesexsite.xxx, possibly enforced by government mandate. This is a "bad idea" for a variety of reasons. First, the only sites which would be interested in such a domain would be hardcore pornography sites—softcore sites (such as suicidegirls.com) are not going to be interested. Most importantly, there is a much better way to go about doing all of this that doesn't involve silly top level domains.

Simply add a new entry (Or just use a TXT record) to the DNS standard that describes content. Add an "adult flag" to examplesexsite.com. Then you could build "child protection" directly into the operating system—if someone tries to resolve a naughty domain name, it wouldn't allow it to happen. All of the benefits of the XXX TLD, none of the mess. DNS has the capability of being a very powerful way of storing internet metadata such as this, and it is unfortunate that so few people realize its potential, and even fewer willing to use it.


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