August 25, 2009

Pt 1: .eco Battle - Three letters at the end of an internet address have sparked a surprisingly high-stakes fight between two environmental champions. The letters in question are "eco." And they're in play because starting next year, the Internet Corporation of Assigned Names and Numbers -- the body that oversees internet domain names -- plans to begin letting people register web sites that end in dot-eco.

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Pt 2: Spiders of Allah - Throughout the Middle East, politics is often driven by powerful religious beliefs. Islam, Judaism and Christianity were all born there. And radical interpretations of each of them continue to define the region. So how does a self-declared atheist make sense of the theological maelstrom of Middle East politics?

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It's Tuesday, August 25th.

The official results aren't out yet. But one of Afghan President Hamid Karzai's ministers says the President has been re-elected with 68 per cent of the vote.

Currently, the other 32 per cent voted for Mahmoud Ahmadinejad.

This is The Current.

.eco Battle

Three letters at the end of an internet address have sparked a surprisingly high-stakes fight between two environmental champions. The letters in question are "eco." And they're in play because starting next year, the Internet Corporation of Assigned Names and Numbers -- the body that oversees internet domain names -- plans to begin letting people register web sites that end in dot-eco.

Former U.S. Vice President Al Gore and former Soviet President Mikhail Gorbachev both think that's a great idea and one that could be a powerful tool for environmental progress. But they have different ideas about what should be done with it. And they're backing different companies, both of which are fighting to control the dot-eco domain. Al Gore is backing an American company named "Dot Eco." And Mikhail Gorbachev is backing a Canadian company called "Big Room." Trevor Bowden is one of Big Room's co-founders and he was in Vancouver.

Big Room's main competition is from a California-based company called Dot Eco, a company supported by former U.S. Vice-President Al Gore. No one from Dot Eco was available to speak to us this morning. But we aired a clip with what its co-founder, Minor Childers, has to say about the company.

In the end, it will be up to the Internet Corporation of Assigned Names and Numbers -- or ICANN -- to decide who gets to control the dot-eco domain. We heard from Karla Valente, the director of communications for product services with ICANN.

.eco Battle - Custom Fit Communications

There are clearly a lot of people willing to put a significant amount of time and money into controlling certain domain names. But Roy McClean isn't sure it's worth the effort. He is the owner of Custom Fit Communications, an internet marketing and development company. He was in Pemberton, British Columbia.

Spiders of Allah

Throughout the Middle East, politics is often driven by powerful religious beliefs. Islam, Judaism and Christianity were all born there. And radical interpretations of each of them continue to define the region. So how does a self-declared atheist make sense of the theological maelstrom of Middle East politics?

James Hider struggles with it every day. He is the Middle East Bureau Chief for the Times of London. He's also the author of The Spiders of Allah: Travels of an Unbeliever on the Frontline of Holy War. And he was in Jerusalem.

Last Word - Non-Believer

Music

Artist: Joel Plaskett
Cd: La De Da
Cut: 8, Non-Believer
Label: Maple Music
Spine: MRCD 6430

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