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Amazon prevails in battle with South American countries for ‘.amazon’ domain name

Amazon, the ecommerce giant, has been embroiled in a 7 year long dispute with countries like Brazil and Peru over the domain name. Amazon, the ecommerce giant, has been embroiled in a 7 year long dispute with countries like Brazil and Peru over the domain name. Image: LEON NEAL / AFP / Getty Images  By Matt Binder2019-05-21 21:39:12 UTC

E-commerce giant Amazon has prevailed in its domain name battle with Amazon, the geographic region in South America.

The Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers, or ICANN, has approved of Amazon’s proposal to run the top level domain name extension “.amazon” after a 7 year dispute with more than a half dozen countries, according to the Financial Times.

The dispute was backed by the Amazon Cooperation Treaty Organisation (ACTO), a group promoting the development of the Amazon Basin. Its member states include Brazil, Peru, Bolivia, Colombia, Ecuador, Guyana, Suriname, and Venezuela.

As part of Amazon’s terms, the company promises not to register any .amazon domain names  with “a primary and well-recognised significance to the culture and heritage of the Amazonia region.” The ecommerce company will also block the use of more than 1,000 domain names that fit that criteria. It would also provide up to nine domain names for ACTO countries to use for non-commercial purposes to “highlight the region’s culture and heritage.”

Amazon had tried for years to get ACTO to drop their complaint. At one point, the company had even offered $5 million in gift cards to Brazil and Peru, the ACTO member states who originally filed the complaint, to no avail.

Speaking of the current proposal that’s been approved by ICANN, the Brazilian Ministry of Foreign Affairs said it “does not address important concerns.”

In 2011, ICANN approved of the creation of a multitude of new general top level brand extensions. Basically, for a yearly fee, any brand or organization could run their own “dot whatever.” 

When Amazon applied to run the “.amazon” domain extension, Brazil and Peru filed a formal complaint with ICANN. The complaint stated that giving Amazon the rights to the extension would “prevent use of this domain for purposes of public interest” and argued that “.amazon” should instead serve regions of the Amazon in South America.

According to ICANN, there will now be a 30 day period for public comment. After this period, ICANN may very well finalize its designation of the .amazon domain to Amazon the company.

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