South American countries battling Amazon over domain name

The governments of South American countries, including Brazil and Peru, are in a tussle with to see who will become the digital king of the jungle.

The Seattle-based web giant, which is one of the Internet’s biggest retailers, has applied for the “.amazon” domain name. The Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (Icann) -- a U.S.-based nonprofit that helps govern the Internet -- is weighing bids to add hundreds of new domain names to the existing 22, which include .com and .gov., The Guardian reports.

But Brazil and Peru have called for the application to be withdrawn, arguing that the name could be used to promote environmental protection and other public interests.

"Allowing private companies to register geographic names as [generic top-level domains] to reinforce their brand strategy or to profit from the meaning of these names does not serve, in our view, the public interest," the Brazilian ministry of science and technology said in a statement.

Last month, Brazil said its views were endorsed by the Amazon Co-operation Treaty, which includes countries like Bolivia, Colombia and Venezuela, The Guardian reports. A formal complaint was filed in November 2012.

The disputed “.amazon” proposal, along with others like ".patagonia" and ".shangrila," are to be discussed at an Icann meeting in South Africa in July. The new domain names, if approved, could appear on the Internet by the end of the year.

Click for more from The Guardian.