Thursday, October 20, 2011

.MIL Websites: Public Domain?

Gassed by John Singer Sargent, 1918
Dear Rich: yesterday you wrote about a website that you characterized as public domain because it was part of the U.S. military. Does that mean that every website that ends with .mil is public domain and material can be used freely? Ahhh ... Our previous blog never said that the website itself was public domain, only that some of the material at the site was public domain. When a website ends with .mil, you can be sure of only one thing: the Department of Defense has certified that the site is associated with the U.S. Military. The .mil domain is known as a sponsored top level domain which means that only those parties that have been cleared by a certifying organization - in this case, to the DoD -  can use it. Other 'certified' domains include .gov, .edu, .aero, .museum, and .coop.