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Registration opens for .xxx domain, celebrity names blocked

search.xxx-porn-search-engineIt’s been quite a wait for interested parties, but the .xxx porn Internet domain is finally here.

For 50 days from Wednesday, established companies from the adult entertainment world will be able to register with the domain. Once that time period is up, registration will be open to all.

The company behind the .xxx domain, Florida-based ICM Registry, has fought for ten years to get the green light for the controversial .xxx domain. The go-ahead was finally given by the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (Icann), the organization that administers Internet addresses.

ICM’s chief executive, Stuart Lawley, told the Independent that Wednesday marks the “proper opening of the doors of the [.xxx] registry,” although several sites went live with the new domain earlier this month.

According to Lawley, the .xxx domain was created “to promote a responsible approach to adult content on the Internet and offer clear signposts to its locations online.”

Talking about the new domain, the ICM boss added, “Porn is not going away, and doesn’t want to operate in the shadows. This will change the face of the adult industry, it will become an increasingly accepted part of the fabric of the Internet.”

Lawley said that although there is no hard evidence to back up the belief that porn sites are more likely to spread viruses and malware than other kinds of sites, ICM has nevertheless done a deal with Internet security company McAfee to scan the new .xxx sites.

The Guardian reports that it won’t only be adult entertainment companies registering the .xxx domain. Other organizations worried about cybersquatters using their names to push traffic through to porn sites, thereby sullying their reputation, will also be registering.

On top of that, ICM has taken it upon itself to ban the names of thousands of famous people from being registered by others. The names of over 4,000 celebrities, including Angelina Jolie, Donald Trump and Beyonce can not be registered with the .xxx domain. And some 15,000 other .xxx domain names have also been blocked at the request of governments and child protection agencies around the world.

“The reason we banned the celebrities’ names was because it’s very difficult for them to trademark their names,” Lawley said, adding, “We didn’t want to have the embarrassment of AngelinaJolie.xxx coming up at the launch of the new domain.” The official launch is scheduled for December 6.

Lawley said he believes his company will be able to sell around 500,000 domain names to adult entertainment businesses by early 2012.

With the new .xxx domain, visitors to such sites will know exactly what they’re going to get, and it won’t be gardening advice on how to grow better tomatoes.