Protests for the granting of the domain .amazon

The granting of the .amazon domain to the company generated protests from Andean countries

The granting of the .amazon domain to the Amazon company generated protests. Amazon had been seeking exclusive rights to the .amazon domain name since 2012. But the countries of the Amazon basin raised objections. The presidents of Peru, Colombia, Ecuador and Bolivia criticized the decision of the organization that manages the Internet protocol

The four leaders - the Peruvian Martín Vizcarra, the Colombian Iván Duque, the Ecuadorian Lenin Moreno and the Bolivian Evo Morales - pledged to join forces. They believe they must protect their countries from what they described as inadequate Internet governance.

The reason for the protests over the granting of the .amazon domain

According to the leaders, the decision sets a serious precedent because:

"It prioritizes private commercial interests over considerations of state public policies, the rights of indigenous peoples and the preservation of the Amazon",

This statement was made in Lima after a meeting of the regional bloc of the Andean Community.

Last week, the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) temporarily assigned the .amazon domain to the company. However, the final decision will be made after receiving the comments of the interested parties. The vote was the result of seven years of deliberations and processes, with governments arguing that a company should not be named after a geographic region and Jeff Bezos's company arguing that it had complied with all required processes.

What is ICANN and how does it work?

Originally, Internet pioneer Jon Postel managed the root servers that managed domain names and IP addresses. Postel was the one who decided the assignments with the rule that the first to ask was the first to receive it, as long as the request was reasonable. As the Internet grew, a movement was generated to design a more formal government process for the management of these resources. Jon Postel's death accelerated the process and triggered the decision by the US Department of Commerce and others to intervene in the creation of ICANN.

ICANN is a non-profit organization formed by different sectors related to the Internet. It was originally created under the orbit of the US Department of Commerce. Its members include local domain registration organizations. There are also representatives of users, companies and governments. These groups are represented on the board of directors that deliberates and makes many of the key decisions regarding names and numbers on the Internet.

ICANN is not controlled by governments such as the United Nations or the International Telecommunications Union (ITU), rather, governments are only part of an advisory function: the Government Advisory Council (GAC). This makes their decisions more democratic than those of traditional intergovernmental organizations.

Other controversies

It is not the first controversy that the entity has to face.

In 2005 the approval of .cat for sites in Catalan received a lot of criticism. Several members were concerned that it was the beginning of a politicization of top-level domains. Since they thought that ICANN's decision was used as arguments by separatist movements.

Another conflicting domain was .xxx. Some governments thought Internet pornography would increase. The conservative Christian community in the US launched a letter-writing campaign to ICANN and politicians to block approval. ICM, the company proposing the domain, suggested that .xxx would allow them to do their job better, including preventing copyright infringement and other illegal activities, and creating a way to enforce responsible adult entertainment.

The proposal was submitted in 2000 and resubmitted in 2004. In 2008, ICM submitted an application to the International Center for Dispute Resolution. A new vote in 2009 rejected the request by 9 votes to 5 and the domain was voted on again in 2009. Finally, in 2011, ICANN approved the generic top-level domain .xxx.

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