The Wall Street Journal is reporting that the Authors Guild and Association of American Publishers have filed formal objections to Amazon’s bid to secure new generic top-level domains like “.book”, “.author” and “.read”.
The book groups have explained to governing body ICANN that “placing such generic domains in private hands is plainly anticompetitive”. The groups are worried that it would allow “already dominant, well-capitalised companies” to abuse market power. Barnes & Noble has also filed its own complaint, which explains that Amazon “would use control of these TLDs to stifle competition in the bookselling and publishing industries”. To an extent, it’s hard to disagree.
ICANN will be taking all this seriously, but it also has another 1900 individual applications for generic top-level domains to concern itself with. If protests are successful, the bids of the rejected companies will lose both the domain and 20 per cent of the $US185,000 application fee. [Wall Street Journal]