I have been frustratedly watching from afar as people have been discussing making a .xxx top-level internet domain. While this may not be a bad idea - it also be not be a good idea. We don’t want to limit graphic material on the internet to .xxx - afterall, there are many sites which show nudity which are not porn sites (medical sites, science sites, international entertainment sites, etc.). A .xxx TLD doesn’t make the web safe for kids - they can still access .com sites with explicit material. Plus the whole idea of the internet is free information - restricting any genre to one part of the internet is a bad idea. If we start restricting information on the net, we start killing the net. Limiting all graphic material to one part of the internet (which nobody may be proposing yet, but probably would in the future) is a bad idea.
A much better idea is to create a new top-level domain called “.kid”. This can be enforced to be G-rated for everyone who signs up for a domain (with strict penalties for failure). It is difficult for parental control programs to differentiate between a .com with porn, and a .com with children’s games, or a .com with educational software. But it is ridiculously simple for a parental control program to only let a child surf .kid domains - ensuring to the maximum extent possible - that children are safe while surfing the internet.
If all goes well with “.kid” we could make a “.teen” too. This is such a simple, effective, and very cheap solution to parent’s fears about unleashing the internet on their children. This is not a new idea, but it’s a great idea. And it’s a shame that it hasn’t been implemented yet.
I hope people at ICANN and politicians will make this happen before I have children. I have emailed both of my senators about this already. Please let them know if you agree with me. Use the links on the right to find your representatives.