[At-Large] News on the .health TLD allocation

Evan Leibovitch evan at telly.org
Tue Sep 2 20:27:30 UTC 2014

On 2 September 2014 14:19, Karl Auerbach <karl at cavebear.com> wrote:

> The internet is a lot more than the web, and names in a TLD can be used
> ​ ​
> for lots of things beyond mapping websites.
> One might wonder whether TLD operators will be careful to observe or
> ​ ​
> police these other uses.  My own guess is that many TLD operators will not.

​Agreed ... though, to be fair, the overwhelming use of *intentionally
memorable* domain names is for websites, email and not much else. Names
that don't need to be memorable -- used in links not meant to be readable
and machine to machine communications -- can be done at third and lower
levels, and/or use long domain names in legacy TLDs.

​Bringing the specific issue of .health back, an
other thing also worth remembering here is that this is ".health" ... not
".med" or ".pharmacy".

While certain elements of "health" include government-regulated or
restricted products and services, the field is massively broader then that.
It extends to diet advice, exercise/relaxation, and beyond that into mental
health and the massive self-help industry. Very little of this (which is
not explicitly toxic) is restricted in most of the world.

Other sub-genres of the term cast the net even more broadly, such as "spiritual
delving into religion, "financial health
into investment advice, and the many non-human
<http://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/pethealth.html> forms
<http://www.usda.gov/wps/portal/usda/usdahome?navid=PLANT_HEALTH> of
<http://foresthealthindex.org/> biological
<http://lazoo.org/animals/animalhealth/animal-health-education/> health
And that's already assuming the regulations are blocking most
anthropomorphic <http://scorecard.carmd.com/> uses <http://pchealthkit.com/>
of the
term <http://www.dnsqueries.com/en/domain_check.php>.

​In other words... I don't envy those trying to keep .health from becoming
a mess, for a bunch of reasons. Legitiscript may offer some help in
trademark and patent enforcement against sites that sell medicine, and that
might be closer to sufficient for a more-narrow TLD. But this is way bigger
... both in the size of the potential, and the difficulty of maintaining
any semblance of elevated user trust.

Evan Leibovitch
Toronto Canada

Em: evan at telly dot org
Sk: evanleibovitch
Tw: el56

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