Art.sy, an online company that offers a Pandora-like service to help visitors find art, has permanently changed its website to artsy.net.

The clever art.sy domain name involved considerable bureaucratic hassle and generated some controversy because .sy is the official domain suffix for the Syrian Arab Republic, which is the subject of U.S. sanctions for its brutal repression of its people.

"The move comes following an outage with our art.sy domain, which was down for a period of 36 hours this week due to an issue with DNS servers in Syria," says a statement from the company today.

"As the conflict in Syria escalated, we realized it might not be possible to renew the domain again due to U.S. sanctions. We also did not want a domain that could be construed in any way as supporting the Syrian government," the statement says.