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Al Gore’s New “.Eco” Effort

Last week came the news that Al Gore is joining an effort to adopt “.eco” for the Internet.

The idea is simple: Environmental organizations will now have a streamlined place to promote their causes and environmental initiatives. That includes securing Web addresses that are more relevant to what they do. For instance, Oceans.com isn’t a destination for anything ecological; it’s for travel. But an Oceans.eco could be a destination for environmental concerns.

One of the founders of Dot Eco LLC, Minor Childers, is a former creative exec at Dreamworks and Paramount and producer of “Lemony Snicket’s A Series of Unfortunate Events.” Childers is hoping that the attention that the former vice president brings, along with a number of Hollywood figures, will boost the visibility of the effort.

The idea is to “build an open, ecumenical community around this shared cause,” according to the company’s Website (which, I should say, is still a “.com”). Profits from registration fees will go to fund scientific initiatives in climate change and other environmental areas, and steps will be taken to vet sites to make sure information is accurate, Childers says.

Childers is joined by founders Fred Krueger and Clark Landry, who hatched the idea for “.eco” and also launched iwin.com and adconion.com. Their board also includes actor Roger Moore, author Richard Muller and Jim Dufour of the Scripps Institution of Oceanography. Davis Guggenheim, the director of “An Inconvenient Truth,” also serves on the board and helped get the participation of Gore’s Alliance for Climate Protection.

Childers said that environmental organizations such as the Surfrider Foundation and the Sierra Club “have been very supportive of the effort.”

First, though, they need to get the “.eco” idea approved. That will come later this year, when the group that runs the Internet — ICANN — decides which new Web domains will fly.

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