ICANN Says Yes You Can To More TLDs

ICANN (Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers ), the entity that tightly controls what domain names could be registered just relaxed its rule paving the way for a slew of new names to be introduced to domain names.

At present, there are already 27 TLDs (top level domains) available like the popular .com, .org, .net, etc. Starting second quarter of 2009, ICANN will start accepting applications for new names and will approve or reject based on an independent review process as well as based on thrid party objection.

What does this mean to the web?

We could start seeing domain names ending with industry specific tags like .travel, .food, etc. and city specific tags like .nyc, .paris, .la etc. There is no end to it and ICANN hasn’t limited the words that can be applied for either to see what the industry will come up with.  There will be numerous options for any business to register a domain name with. And I am not sure if it can be structured. If you had a .nyc domain name, could you still have your .com address and if you were a hotel in New York City, could you also have a domain name with .travel? You are still a business, so you could have a .biz domain name as well.

Having said that, not everyone could register a TLD. You have to be serious enough and shell out around half a million dollars and promise to take care of it.

What does this mean to us?

With a habit of visiting multitude of websites daily, sometimes it’s hard enough for me to remember between a .com and a .net these days. With the flood gates for domain names being opened with the possibility or hundres of new TLDs, the advantage is not in our side. We are going to get confused. Period.

I wouldn’t be able to remember if the hotel someone recommended or the review i read pointed to a .com or a .biz or a .travel or a .hotel name in it. Especially if there were different hotels registered with each of these TLDs.

What does this mean to Google?

If I were Google, I would be very happy this morning as all this is good news for a search engine. If you were confused or unable to find the business names anymore by your .coms or .nets or .biz options for a name, you would naturally turn to a search engine. The results shown by Google are going to be even more important down the line when there are a zillion more sites with crazy names attached to them with no apparent structure.

I think this just made the consumer dependence on search engines like Google even stronger. More and more people are going to flock to Google to go anywhere on the web as the directories would be too big and too cluttered to find what you want.

Even now, how many times have you caught yourself going straight to Google before you get to a website? This is just with the few common TLDs like .com, .net and the occasional hypens in the name. Imagine with hundred more options for domain names and my head starts to spin already.

It’s Friday. So, lets push aside the gloom that’s about to descend on us and see if we can come up with some funny domain names? I have a feeling the first TLD that will get registered next year will be .porn.

[via ICANN]

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8 Responses to “ICANN Says Yes You Can To More TLDs”

  1. olly@ Computer components June 27, 2008 at 11:05 am #

    Maybe .porn or .xxx maybe?

  2. Kyle Eslick June 27, 2008 at 8:54 pm #

    I think it will be .sex

    I’m not thrilled about this at all. Dot coms will grow in value, but all other ones that aren’t strong keyword domains will not be worth much.

    Kyle Eslicks last blog post..Make Money Online with Amazon Associates

  3. Andrew@Fredericksburg Lawyer June 27, 2008 at 11:36 pm #

    I have to agree with Kyle on this. I don’t think other TLDs will be worth much, just as we see now with things like .biz. If your site isn’t .com, you’re going to lose traffic. It’s that simple. People will forget what the extension is, and they won’t be able to find you.

    Andrews last blog post..Nationwide Trademark Protection

  4. Michael June 28, 2008 at 4:44 am #

    I’m glad ICANN found another way to make money out of thin air, I really hope they realize that this is going to do nothing more then make it easier for phishers to get peoples private information or confuse and frustrate internet users.

  5. Andy@medical July 1, 2008 at 11:03 am #

    I agree to your opinion. And what you said about Google is indeed true. First time when the web became popular it was fun surfing around. We (in Germany) had our .de, .com was “far” away. For quite a while many people (including myself) stopped this “surfing” in the true sense of word, meaning looking around where to go, as in many areas now strong websites became first choice (e.g. Ebay).
    But leaving these strong sites aside it was still easy to look for a niche, as you just typed in the keyword adding a “.de” or “.com”.
    But the more Domains arrived, the more complex it became. Especially as Google for quite a while (and even now) seems to honour a keyword-related Domain.
    So many keywords have been taken … but ending in the situation, that some of them contain valuable content, others just crap.
    So then we are back to what you said: Google will gain. Yes. For sure.
    Personally I doubt anyone else aside Domain sellers.
    There are already to many Domains available, many of them expensive and fully useless.
    Maybe some exceptions: SEX or PORN could make sense – just to protect those who are not interested in that !!
    But certainly this will be not the only one, and noone will stop ICANN and the Domainsellers from doing good business.

    Nice question: Will Microsoft buy microsoft.porn ?? Or IBM … or others ?? .. who knows …

    Andys last blog post..Interessantes Blog zum Thema Krankheiten und Gesundheit

  6. Fahad July 2, 2008 at 8:51 am #

    I am not too thrilled about new TLD domains either. They are never going to have enough value as .com domains do. People who dont use computers much will surely not even think about any other TLD domain other then .com and maybe .net. Although I gotta say, I liked the .tv domain. Although its expensive! :(
    But more or less, I aint really looking forward to new TLD domains….

    Fahads last blog post..How to Embed High Quality Youtube Videos

  7. Stephen@China Jobs July 3, 2008 at 9:28 am #

    Hi K,

    I’m in the against it camp too. It’s going to make things more confusing. I’m sure the serious domain buyers will find a way to turn it to their advantage though.

    Stephens last blog post..Flickr Picks – Bringing You Photos Of China

  8. K July 3, 2008 at 10:05 am #

    Stephen, I’m sure they’d too. But, the dot com names will sure start to cost a lot more than it used to. May be.

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