Out of Its Domain.
While most Americans would be content with the U.S. Postal Service The U.S. Postal Service (USPS) processes and delivers mail to individuals and businesses within the United States. The service seeks to improve its performance through the development of efficient mail-handling systems and operates its own planning and engineering programs. if it simply delivered "snail mail Mail sent via a country's government-regulated postal system.
(messaging) snail mail - (Or "snailmail", "smail" from "US Mail" via "USnail"; "paper mail"). Bits of dead tree sent via the postal service as opposed to electronic mail. " reliably, the agency has boldly set its sights on cyberspace. The USPS (1) (Uninterruptible Switching Power Supply) A power supply for a computer that contains its own battery and uninterruptible power supply (UPS) circuitry. See power supply and UPS. wants to control the "top-level" domain. us. A top-level domain (networking) top-level domain - The last and most significant component of an Internet fully qualified domain name, the part after the last ".". For example, host wombat.doc.ic.ac.uk is in top-level domain "uk" (for United Kingdom). is the final Internet suffix that can identify an e-mail account's or World Wide Web site's country of origin, as in www.city.palo-alto.ca.us. Although not very common in the United States United States, officially United States of America, republic (2005 est. pop. 295,734,000), 3,539,227 sq mi (9,166,598 sq km), North America. The United States is the world's third largest country in population and the fourth largest country in area. , top-level domains are used in many European countries, and in 1997 the Clinton administration Noun 1. Clinton administration - the executive under President Clinton
executive - persons who administer the law decided the idea of encouraging such usage was worth exploring. The White House asked the USPS to draft a proposal to run the operation and put forward a plan "to commit substantial resources to accelerate the development of .us as an enabling framework for electronic commerce." The USPS said it would do this by providing "universal" access to geographically based electronic addresses (such as email@example.com) for all U.S. residents.
As might be expected, the thought of bringing the USPS' particular brand of efficiency to cyberspace has not exactly been well-received. Critics of the plan, such as Mikki Barry of the Domain Name Rights Coalition, a nonprofit that lobbies for fair and open domain name practices, point out that the USPS has no relevant expertise in the area of top-level domain administration and argue that it would likely bungle the job.
If an amendment to the National Telecommunications and Information Administration The National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) is an agency of the United States Department of Commerce that serves as the President's principal adviser on telecommunications policies pertaining to the United States' economic and technological Reauthorization Act proposed by Rep. Chris Cox (R-Calif.) passes, the USPS will have no role to play in delivering e-mail. Cox doesn't just worry about USPS incompetence; he fears that the postal service would try to undercut competitors in a new area that threatens traditional mail. "We're concerned [the USPS] would leverage their existing monopoly and the advantages they have - not paying taxes, not being regulated the same way - to disadvantage their competitors," an aide to Cox told Wired News in August. "They've shown a willingness to play that game."