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$4 Million Spent Lobbying Congress on Domain Names

Companies spend $4 million influencing Capitol Hill.

2009 lobbying expendituresDomain name companies and other companies with an interest in domain name matters spent about $4 million dollars lobbying Congress last year.

Using public records filed under the Lobbying Disclosure Act, Domain Name Wire has tallied total spending for 2009 by a number of companies. (See spending in the first half of 2009 here.)

VeriSign led the pack, spending $2.4 million to influence matters related to Domain name addressing, internet taxation, phishing and email legislation. In second place was Go Daddy, which spent $715,500 on a number of matters. In the second half of the year it focused on targeted online advertising and deep packet inspection.

With ICANN working to gain further independence from the U.S. government, the non-profit spent $240,000. It describes some of its interests as new gTLDs, “independence from UN/ITU/government capture”, and “post-JPA cooperation with USG”.

Neustar spent $140,000 on matters including those related to ICANN. Coalition Against Domain Name Abuse spent $130,000 compared to the $10,000 spent by Internet Commerce Association.

Both Demand Media and its eNom spent money on lobbying, totalling $170,000 between the two. eNom spent its portion on “Providing information to Congress regarding generic top level domain names.”

Banks.com spent $30,000, including on issues of “Treasury Department Symbols”. This should come as no surprise, since the company is fighting to hold onto its IRS.com domain name.

Some non-domain name companies spent money lobbying about domain name issues as well. Christian Coalition of America lobbied to try to stop the .xxx top level domain name. Both Xerox and Time Warner pushed issues related to internet domain names and trademarks.

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Reader Interactions


    Leave a Comment

  1. Ms Domainer


    Cybersquatting on the IRS?


    Seriously, although the owner probably has the legal right to the IRS domain, I wouldn’t want to tangle with the IRS, unless I were safely tucked on the Cayman Islands with a load of money and a sharp trademark/domain lawyer working to defend it.


  2. Jim Fleming

    Those numbers are tiny in comparison to the
    IPv4 Address Spectrum carted away for FREE ?
    by big Carriers.

    A /8 is worth about $1,600,000,000 based on
    $10 per-static IP per-month consumer fees.


    The RIRs apparently pay nothing to ICANN. The
    large telco Carriers also pay nothing ?

    The valuable under-belly of the .ARPA
    Internet continues to be milked with little
    or no concern for the value of the assets
    being exploited.

  3. Antony Van Couvering

    This tally is woefully short. To make a fair comparison, you would need to add the considerable monies spent by Verizon, AT&T, NetChoice, INTA, and the various other intellectual property interests. I suspect they would dwarf these amounts.

  4. domain guy

    i do not see marchex here.also verisign deserves its $1 plus per domain profit/price hike they lobby their interests.i also noticed the ica was very little at $10k..as this organization is supported by domainers.so what we have here is large corporations influence lobbying efforts and the individuals are left in the dust with little or no voice in governement regulation…no surprise here.

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