PublishedApril 13, 2000

CCIA Blasts Postal Service “.gov” Wolf in “.com” Sheep Clothing

Washington, DC- The Computer & Communications Industry Association today denounced the United States Postal Service’s decision to change its Internet domain name from www.usps.gov to www.usps.com.

“This change follows their recent pattern of trying to leverage their postal monopoly into the world of e-commerce,” said CCIA President and CEO Ed Black. “They are in a state of denial that there are any restrictions as to what lines of business are appropriate for a government-sponsored agency.

“We are also extremely concerned that this “mutation” could deceive the public into believing they are not dealing with a government entity. We are certain that many online customers would be reluctant to provide personal and financial information to a “.com” that would be required to turn over any information to another government agency or investigator that requests it without judicial process or even a subpoena. The privacy implications are frightening.”

Although the “.com” domains have traditionally been the purview of private sector businesses and individuals, there are no restrictions on who can register under an available address. The United States Government controls the “.gov” domain, and “.gov” addresses are only available to U.S. government agencies.

“We regret that the lure of e-commerce has become impossible for the government to resist, and are troubled that our members must now compete with the Postal Monopoly in addition to our private sector competitors,” said Black. “We urge the Postal Rate Commission, Congressional oversight committees, and the Administration to reexamine the role of the Postal Service and other government agencies in the world of e-commerce.”

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