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After 7-Year Battle, Amazon Nears Victory In Domain Name Dispute

May 22, 2019
Originally published on May 22, 2019 5:30 am
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STEVE INSKEEP, HOST:

Next we have a dispute over the ownership of a name - Amazon. It's one of the world's largest companies. Amazon is also the name of the giant rainforest in South America. So who gets to use the Internet domain .amazon?

ACHILLES ZALUAR: It all started in 2012, when Amazon company applied for all the domains that could be .amazon instead of .com.

NOEL KING, HOST:

Achilles Zaluar is director of technology promotion at Brazil's Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Brazil and other countries in the Amazon basin do not like the idea that .amazon would belong to Amazon. Zaluar sees a chance of confusion. If a guy searches the Internet and sees Amazon, is he finding this Amazon or that Amazon?

ZALUAR: When he sees hotel.amazon or tweet.amazon or ecotourism.amazon, where is it coming from? Does it have the endorsement of the eight states that share the Amazonian region?

INSKEEP: ICANN, which is the nonprofit that manages Internet domains, encouraged both sides to negotiate. Here's ICANN's Rodrigo de la Parra.

RODRIGO DE LA PARRA: So ICANN, in this sense, provided, you know, the platform for the discussions of these parties whenever there is a contentious issue and also helped them to get to this - to a mutually acceptable solution.

INSKEEP: Sadly, the talks have not succeeded, so now ICANN has picked a side. It is for the company that sells a huge variety of products, despite the appeal of the forest that's home to an incredible range of plants and animals.

KING: There is still a public comment period before the company gets the domain. Amazon the retailer says it recognizes the concerns of countries in the Amazon and that Amazon will work with Amazon nations to preserve the culture and heritage of the Amazon.

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