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Sex.com book

Sex.com has been three years in the making for investigate journalist Kieren McCarthy.

First drawn to the story in June 2001, having loosely observed the battle for the Internet's most valuable domain since 1999, it soon became clear to him that the story was far larger and more complex than he imagined.

The court documents alone stretch to tens of thousands of pages, all of which were painstakingly compiled and transferred over the Atlantic to Oxford where Kieren tried to fit writing the book in between news editing and reporting shifts.

Despite the enormous press attention given to the story over the years, book publishers remained wary of the story, claiming that no one wanted to read about the Internet. But the brutal battle for Sex.com was always about more than the Internet, or domain names, or the legal system, or even sex - it was about men and desire and their willingness to fight to the bitter end for something they wanted so badly.

Two series of interviews with Gary Kremen, five of his lawyers, his friends and family and work colleagues, as well as Stephen Cohen, two of his lawyers and several of his previous friends were carried out in San Francisco, Los Angeles, San Jose and San Diego in September 2003 and again in September 2006. Other interviews happened with a range of characters over time via email and the phone.

In the end, a morass of tapes, mini-discs, papers, transcripts, photographs, court documents, notebooks and beer-mats was compiled and condensed into a draft of 150,000 words. This was eventually worked down to just over 80,000 words through a series of edits, proof readings, libel readings and copy edits.

A November 2006 publication date was just missed, setting the book back to May 2007 as the case continued to provide tons of fresh information as Cohen was kept in jail and then released and then returned to court on 26 February 2007.

With it now completed and out, Kieren McCarthy hopes that all his work was worthwhile and that people enjoy reading about the extraordinary battle for Sex.com as much as he enjoyed writing about it.

 

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