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Letter Forwarded on Behalf of Jeffrey Douglas

  • To: xxx-tld-agreement@xxxxxxxxx
  • Subject: Letter Forwarded on Behalf of Jeffrey Douglas
  • From: tom@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
  • Date: Wed, 10 May 2006 12:12:06 -0700

I write to oppose the creation of a &ldquo;Dot XXX&rdquo; top level
domain.  As detailed below, I am California lawyer representing
hundreds of websites carrying adult content.  I represent and regularly
speak to a cross section of the adult industry, from the &ldquo;captains
of industry&rdquo; to the smallest of players and everyone in between. 
I am aware of virtually no support for the &ldquo;Dot XXX&rdquo; tld
except for individuals or businesses who expect immediate financial
benefit; that is, industry support appears limited to those few
entities which have received financial incentives from the &ldquo;Dot
XXX&rdquo; sponsors.               

Whatever tepid initial support may arise from those who have minimal
familiarity with the issues evaporates after a full discussion.  This
is particularly noteworthy when an IFOR speaker advocating on behalf of
&ldquo;Dot XXX&rdquo; appears at public forums.  ICM Registry has failed
spectacularly in persuading neutral audiences that &ldquo;Dot XXX&rdquo;
is in their best interests.               

Most notably, the primary justification for a &ldquo;Dot XXX&rdquo; tld
is to decrease traffic by minors to adult websites.  Yet &ldquo;Dot
XXX&rdquo; cannot do so unless existing adult &ldquo;Dot COM&rdquo;
websites voluntarily (or by legislation are forced to) give up their
&ldquo;Dot COM&rdquo; URLs.  Voluntary, uncompensated surrender of
valuable, intellectual property will never happen, nor should it. 
Forced divestiture of &ldquo;Dot COM&rdquo; websites based upon
censorial legislation by the American Congress would be catastrophic to
the basic premises behind the Internet, as well as free expression.     
         

There are countless other flaws to the concept of &ldquo;Dot XXX&rdquo;
as well as ICM Registry&rsquo;s specific proposal, most of which have
been discussed in numerous other thoughtful posts.  Suffice it to say
that &ldquo;Dot XXX&rdquo; must never be allowed to take effect.  I
offer my credentials below, for those who wish to read them.   

I am a practicing criminal defense attorney in California who emphasizes
the First Amendment and related matters in my practice.  I am Chair of
the Board of Directors of the Free Speech Coalition, the trade
association of the adult entertainment industry, and I was formerly
both Executive Director and Legal Counsel of that organization.  I am
the former National Chair and President of the First Amendment Lawyers
Associa&shy;tion, and I am a member of the National Advisory Board of
the Association of Club Executives as well as of the Board of Directors
of the A.C.L.U. Foundation of Southern California.                

I have represented and advised all segments of the adult entertainment
industry since 1982, addressing issues arising from creation,
manufacture, and distribution, through direct consumer sales of
adult-oriented expressive materials.  In particular, I represent some
of the largest manufacturers, distributors, and retailers of sexually
explicit materials.     

I represent hundreds of websites specializing in X-rated products and
services, as well as &ldquo;mainstream&rdquo; clients such as Virgin
Megastores, and other retailers selling adult products.  I successfully
defended the first website prosecuted in the U.S. for distributing
obscenity.               

I have qualified and testified as an expert witness in California state
courts, and have qualified and testified as an expert witness in
several Federal cases, including Nitke v. Ashcroft, Case No. 01 Civ.
11476, a challenge to the obscenity provisions of the Communications
Decency Act before a three judge panel of the Southern District of New
York, as well as in Free Speech Coalition v. Gonzalez, Case No.
05-CV-1126-WDM, a challenge to 18 U.S.C. &sect; 2257 currently pending
before the United States District Court in Colorado.  In addition, I
regularly testify before the California legislature, and on invitation,
have testified before the United States Congress.  I am an editor of
Porn 101, a published (Prometheus Press) compendium of academic papers
given at the World Pornography Conference in 1998, and I served along
with several university professors as one the primary organizers of
that Conference.    

Jeffrey J. Douglas 
jeffreyjdouglas.com 
jjdxxx1@xxxxxxx 



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