Monthly Archives: February 2011

.Gay Domain Extension May Soon Become Reality

The Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers, or ICANN, recently announced plans to introduce a batch of new domain extensions, and one gay entrepreneur is coughing up the $185,000 application fee to get .gay approved.  Scott Seitz, the chief executive of dotGay and the founder of SPI Marketing, hopes that his application is one of the expected 115+ entries to get approved.

However, before you rush out to register, there are numerous obstacles Seitz must overcome before his domain extension dream becomes a reality.  One is ICANN itself.  There is no word how many of the applications the organization plans to approve.

Even if ICANN initially approves .gay, various country’s governments can use their clout to prevent it from ever being fully approved, as the U.S. and Brazil did with the .xxx extension in 2004.  Several conservative Arab nations have already said they will oppose .gay.

Then comes the issue of governance.  Should .gay cross all of the approval hurdles, the domain could become, in part, a forum for hate groups to fill with their vitriol.  Seitz plans to work with groups like GLAAD and Lamda Legal to filter these users and defend the group in the legal battles that will inevitably ensue.

The path may seem daunting, but Seitz remains hopeful.  “We’re getting ready to see the Internet reborn again in a very different way,” he says. “I got involved because I saw what the opportunity was for the gay community. .gay will be a venue for enhancing our ability to interact with each other as a community.”


Trouble Finding A V-Day Card For Your Partner? That Soon May Change

On this high holy day of consumerism, a story on NPR’s Morning Edition pointed out how difficult it can be to find Valentine’s Day cards for same sex partners (you can read or listen to the story here).  Despite a plethora of cards tailored to other demographics, no major greeting card company currently offers cards targeted to the GLBT community.

However, Andre du Broc, a senior writer for industry giant Hallmark, thinks that soon may change.  “We’ve taken baby steps so far,” he says, referring to the company’s line of gay marriage cards released in 2008 when California legalized same sex marriage.  He thinks the company realizes the potential of the GLBT market, but they are being prudent in determining how to get the cards in front of the right consumers.

Judging by the market size and buying power of gay Americans and our proclivity for giving each other cutesy cards, I would guess there’s plenty of money to be made in the gay greeting card business!