Bush & .XXX: no progress can be made

About two weeks ago, the press reported howthe Bush administration objected to the formal creation of the .XXX domain. As the name implies, the .xxx domain is intended to be the primary root level domain for pornography related businesses and content.

Of course, the WhiteHouse’s objections were largely to support the various completely clueless conservative groups that requested said blockage.

For example, the Family Research Council demonstrated their complete and utter cluelessness through these statements:

Pornographers will be given even more opportunities to flood our homes, libraries and society with pornography through the .XXX domain. … There already is a law prohibiting them from selling hardcore porn on the Internet-anywhere on the Internet- yet they have been doing if for years. … The .XXX domain will increase not decrease porn on the Internet.

That pretty much sums up “clueless” right there.

First, there is absolutely nothing special about any of the top level domain names and .xxx is no different. It is just an entry in a text file somewhere and it is trivially easy to advertise any random server at any random available name.

Secondly, the notion that some law exists that prohibits the sale of hardcore pornography “on the Internet — anywhere on the Internet” is just plain delusional. No such law exists in the United States, as far as I’m aware. And, certainly, there is no organizational body in the world that can pass a law that makes any given act, action or mode of commerce illegal throughout the entire world.

In other words, the FRC is just making crap up.

Finally, thinking that the creation of a top level domain would increase or decrease the availability of porn is just plain silly.

And, of course, the FRC’s “press release” is about the average response from the religious nut job organizations in this (and I’m sure other) countries. Clueless. Idiotic. Pointless.

Yet, of course, that same group of people were one of the critical set of demographics that voted for Bush.

That is the real reason why the WhiteHouse — and just about every administration before this one — has done basically nothing to enact laws or standards to govern the pornography industry. Beyond obvious laws in the name of protecting children, there is pretty much zero regulation of the pornography industry.

Which has led to an interesting situation. To listen to the anti-porn pundits, the pornography industry is an evil hell hole rife with disease and drug addiction.

Yet, that isn’t the case. Instead, an unregulated industry where the very nature of participation involves unsafe sex has HIV and other STD infection rates way, way below averages. Why? Because it is the only way their business can survive.

And, yet, the porn industry has frequently asked to codify a number of the self imposed regulations into law. This may seem like an odd thing to do. However, with such laws on the books, it would prevent a rogue agency from operating in a fashion that would screw it up for the otherwise relatively legitimate enterprises.

Yet, the government — the administration currently in power and every one before it — has ignored the industry’s requests.

Why?

Simple. To do so — to enact any law that defines limits within which a porn company can operate legally — would be to somehow validate the pornography business.

In other words, the Bush administration cannot support any policy that validates the existence of porn. Period.

So, instead of having well defined and reasonable laws on the books that provide a framework for safe and legal operation of an industry that many find distasteful, we have a situation where the laws that are passed are often completely stupid (no sex toys for you, Alabama!) or there is simply no regulation at all and operators are left to deal with really long court procedures to solve the most basic of operations problems.

The whole thing is really rather comical. Now, of course, Gonzalez is going on a holy war (literally) against porn. This should be rather funny.


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One Response to “Bush & .XXX: no progress can be made”

  1. Darth Sidious says:

    The part I find utterly dumb regarding the rejection of the .xxx domains is that it would have been so much easier to filter sites with such an explicit root domain. Now, they will keep on using .com.

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