Who should own the gTLD .Amazon domain?
When new Generic Top Level Domains (gTLD) became available it was almost a given that large global companies would apply for their own domains. For instance it would be no surprise to learn that eBay wanted the domain .eBay and could potentially offer you a unique URL to your eBay shop in the format www.YourUserID.eBay.
Likewise it’s no surprise that Amazon applied for the gTLD .Amazon and why wouldn’t they? They’re a big enough company and could set up domains such as prime.amazon, fba.amazon, sellercentral.amazon etc. However there’s a problem, after the gTLD was almost rubber stamped (only Amazon applied for .amazon), half of South America decided that whilst they had no interest in applying for .amazon in the first place that Amazon shouldn’t have it – some government or other might want it to use it for the Amazon rain forest.
Now in an act of incredulous double standards, the US Congressional Trademark Caucus has written to ICANN (Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers) saying that the governments of Brazil and Peru’s objections “potentially creates a troubling precedent of governments disregarding established principles of international law”… which is exactly what the US are doing by interfering and backing Amazon’s application.
It’s worth noting that the US government are about to transition “stewardship of IANA (Internet Assigned Numbers Authority) functions” to ICANN and mention this twice, at the start and end of their letter. They say that by resolving the .amazon issue ICANN can demonstrate that they are accountable to the global community and won’t be swayed by government interference.
Frankly ICANN can’t win! They can ignore the US government and save .amazon for South America, or they can ignore Brazil and Peru and give .amazon to Jeff Bezos. Either way they’re going to upset some pretty powerful interests in the form of the USA and Amazon or half of South America.
So what do you think? Give .amazon to Amazon Inc a justifiable owner and recognised global brand, or save it for a river which flows through multiple countries so who knows who should control the domain? Is there a solution that gets ICANN off the hook and keeps Brazil, Peru, South America, the US government and Amazon Inc all relatively happy?