Controversy Brewing Over .art …
I just read an additional post about the .art top-level domain from Paddy Johnson of the ArtFagCity blog. It turns out that I was incorrect in stating earlier that e-flux is the only art organization applying for the management of this domain. It would be more accurate to say that they are the only nonprofit applying.
They also appear to be the only applicant that has clearly stated on their website that they intend to use revenues from the .art domain to support the artistic community. On their About page, they explain….
“A substantial part of the revenues generated by this service will be returned to the art community in a form of grants and funding for underfunded art institutions, organizations and projects.”
Johnson on her blog has more detailed information on the other applicants. She remarks that some of them ” make me very nervous.” I agree. It suddenly seems very important to protect the .art domain from those motivated by pure greed. It’s like someone wanting to own and resell air. I mean, after all, doesn’t “art” belong to all of us?
GalleristNY has also now posted about the .art domain and explained, “Only one company can own a top-level domain, and will have the right to operate and develop it over the course of 10 years. Applications for the use of the domain would go through this one company. If there is discontent with how the domain is being run at the end of 10 years, it is highly possible that ownership will not be renewed.”
They also quote e-flux co-founder and artist Anton Vidokle explaining why he believes its important for e-flux to administer .art.
In fairness, I’ve received comments from a man named Paul Garrin claiming that he has owned the .art domain since 1996 through his company name.space and that he intends to sue ICANN to protect his trademark rights. However, I am not sure if this legal claim is accurate or not.
So, it looks like this topic may be brewing for future controversy and I’ll keep you posted as best I can.