Saudi Arabia Government Opposes .gay Websites

By Michelle Garcia

Originally published on Advocate.com August 14 2012 5:04 PM ET

The Saudi Arabian government's technology agency has expressed its opposition to creating domain names that end in .gay, instead of .com or .org.

Members of the Communications and Information Technology Commission said .gay would be "offensive" to certain societies and cultures, the BBC reports.

Andy Wasley, of the U.K. LGBT rights organization Stonewall, said, "Saudi Arabia already prevents its 1.9 million lesbian, gay and bisexual people from visiting community websites, like Stonewall's, that offer support and information. It's disappointing that it now wants to censor the internet for 420 million gay people worldwide."

The Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers, which regulates URLs, are in the process of discerning what companies or organizations will run new generic top-level domains, or gTLDs. Among the 1,930 requests for new gTLDs, Saudi Arabia has also condemned include .sex, .tattoo, and .baby, among others.