New Domains set to change the face of Internet

By | June 19, 2012

If you’ve been thinking that Web 2.0 was all about User-centric Data, Cool Inter-operability and Rich Media Apps, you are about to be damned – Bored of typing the usual Internet addresses? Worry not – Cause here comes the new set of Internet Domains – probably the next generation of web  domains.

In a recent announcement by Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN), which is responsible for assigning and managing IP addresses and DNS roots, it has been revealed that a large bunch of Generic Top Level Domians (gTLD’s) are being proposed for addition as though the existing domains are not enough. The numbers are bizarre!

Internet Domains are letters that follow the period in an Internet Address and there has been a widely prevalent thirst for newer, catchy domains that would be an instant hit with the Web populace. Like .com, .net, .org, .edu and .us, .uk, .in, .ca, .au, major Tech Companies and Popular Brands have applied for their own custom domains and the total applications amount to 1,930. About 900 were from North America, 675 from Europe and 303 from the Asia-Pacific region and a modest 17 from Africa. Suffixes from languages other than English have also been sought. Google, as you would expect, has applied for 101 suffixes while Amazon needed 76 domains. 66 applications were country-specific.

Internet’s gonna change to ‘.everything’ cause you name something – you have a domain in that name! Google has applied for .fun, .love, .google, .youtube, .googl, .lol, .plus, .kid, .dad, .boo (sounds inappropriate though), .eat, .fly and .new. Amazon, went for, as you might have guessed by now – .amazon, .like (watch out Facebook!), .kindle, .zappos, .buy, .tunes, .mail, .music, .movie, .author, .smile, .song, .deal, .call.

Microsoft has applied for .docs, .windows and .live while Apple has applied for .apple but nor for .mac. Surprisingly, no one sought .woman and .women but .man and .men had one applicant each. The most sought after domain was .app and ironically, Apple has not placed a bid for that suffix. Strange huh?

There is a close contest for many suffixes – .love has 7 bids and .app has 13 suitors while .baby has 2 bids – from Google and Johnson & Johnson and 6 bids for .now. Demand Media, Amazon and Google may have to lock horns for the .wow domain. More than 200 domains have more than one bidder – and ICANN will decide who gets what.

There were applications for .earth, . sports, .baseball, .sucks, .auto, .volvo, .heinz, .insurance, .sex, .sexy (Yes, I’m over 18 LOL), .fashion, .cars, .baseball, .tax, .heart, .book, .vegas, .news, .vip, .hockey, .video .hair and many more. There were no bids for .troll, .tax, .curling, .pluto (or any other planet), .gun, .weapon, .media, .nascar and .league, .disney and .cola. This process, however, has strong oppositions.

Oppositions claim that its not correct for a profit-making company to own the rights for a particular domain as it would cause discomfort for other companies or individuals trying to register a website under that domain. Also, a domain would be acquired by a company which does not match the domain’s nature or name and this might cause huge confusion and uproar. For example, ICANN would not consider a bid for .dell if it wasn’t from Dell. There’s also a question whether these new suffixes are needed at all.

Though the ‘Globalization of Internet’ started way back in 2010, the race has picked up pace with the recent bidding calls. ICANN is expected to charge upto $200,000 per each winning bid and it’s reported that Google has shelled out nearly $18 million to stake claim of these suffixes. It will evaluate applications in batches of 500 and by next year, these new domains will be in use.

This is an opportunity for companies to create websites related to their brands and services so as to showcase them and gain wider customer and fan base. It’s also envisaged as a once-in-a-life chance for firms to get hold of what they needed and promote their products with ease and thereby profit wisely.

So, get ready for a stranger – and a more commercial Internet! A new era of Online Innovation awaits us!

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