Domain Name News
House Approves Dot-Kids Internet Domain
Tuesday, May 21, 2002
The House of Representatives' today approved legislation designed to cordon off a safe online "playground" for young children.
House members voted 406-2 to approve the "Dot-Kids Implementation and Efficiency Act of 2002," which would mandate the creation of a "dot-kids" extension within America's sovereign "dot-us" Internet domain.
The new Internet addressing space "will be a cyberspace sanctuary for content that is suitable for kids," said Rep. Edward Markey (D-Mass.) during today's debate.
Authored by Rep. John Shimkus (R-Ill.), the legislation represents a step back from an earlier proposal that called for the creation of a stand-alone "dot-kids" suffix to be included alongside dot-com, dot-net and dot-org in the Internet's Domain Name System (DNS).
The U.S. Commerce Department and the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) - the entities that share responsibility for the DNS - balked at that proposal, prompting the proposed compromise.
Because of the Internet's hierarchical nature, any domain name owner can create a virtually infinite number of "second-level" domains within a single Internet address. If the U.S. government reserves the rights to the address "kids.us," it could assign second-level addresses using the top-level address as a domain (for example, address.kids.us).