Peter T. Holsen


Mr. Holsen discusses the history and development of the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN), which is a non-profit corporation that privately manages the Internet. He asserts that United States law does not properly support ICANN in its mission to solve the complex problems facing the Internet. One of the most important issues facing the Internet is the fact that adult-orientated materials are commonly and easily accessed by young children. Mr. Holsen feels that Congress needs to set standards by which ICANN can better categorize the adult materials on the Internet, but at the same time not infringe upon the free speech of those posting such materials. As one solution, Mr. Holsen proposes that Congress set a standard for "zoning" the adult-oriented material by top-level domain name. He discusses the similarities between zoning by top-level domain name and several historic land zoning cases from the federal courts. Mr. Holsen concludes that if Congress were to permit the zoning of adult-orientated material into specific top-level domain names (e.g. .sex), parents and guardians would then have the power to selectively filter these domain names from their Internet browser, thus preventing access to the materials by their children.