The owner of a service that registers domain names ending in .web is taking the US Internet Assigned Names Authority (IANA) to court over its proposals to add seven top-level domains to .com .net and .org.
Chris Ambler has filed a suit with the state court in San Louis, California through his company Image Online Design, alleging that the committee deprived him of exclusive rights to the Internet tag .web.
Ambler has asked the court to prevent other registration companies, including the Internet Committee, from registering sites under the .web domain.
He has also asked for damages to be awarded to his company. Ambler insists he had a verbal agreement with IANA that authorised him to run the registry solely for .web domains and wants to have the .web domain awarded exclusively to Image Online.
Ambler accused IANA of reneging on its agreement, saying: "We had an agreement and that's been broken by the IANA. It will damage my business."
But Ambler's protests carried no weight with Larry Bloch, managing director of NetBenefit, an ISP in London. He said: "I don't see why a company should have exclusive rights to a domain. That is a monopoly situation and benefits no-one."
Last year, Postel (a board member of IANA) put forward a proposal to expand the number of top-level domains in order to relieve the pressure on the .com domain, which has seen enormous growth in the last three years.
Postel also believes the expansion will help to clear up several disputes over copyright.
Once the proposals are authorised several registration organisations are expected to appear and, unless the courts find in Ambler's favour, all of them will be able to register domains using .web.
Image Online Design is at www.iodesign.com
The IAHC can is at www.iahc.org.
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