What do You Think About the Liberalization of Domain Name Extentions?

By Daniel Scocco

If you are not aware of it, some time ago the ICANN (Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers) approved a regulation that will enable companies from around the world to register their own top level domain extensions. Microsoft, for example, could register .microsoft or even .software. There is will be a costly fee involved with the process, but if you think that domains like .sex and .poker are also a possibility, you can imagine the buzz that the whole deal will generate.

Anyway last week Lyndon Antcliff asked my feedback on the liberalization, because he was compiling a post with opinions from around the industry. Here is what I told him:

I believe that the liberalization of domain extensions was a bad move by ICAAN. It will add a great deal of confusion on the web, as the end user won’t know what extension means what. If I am not wrong companies interested in having their own extension will need to pay over $100,000 in fees, and this could have been the motivation for the whole thing.

After a while, though, I believe people will head back to the established extensions. Inside the mess of .nyc, .porn, .microsoft and .toys, people will just type .com or .org, because they know those will work. Interestingly enough, the liberalization of top level extensions could strengthen the .com majesty.

And this point raises the following question: would a company be better off spending $100,000 to buy its own extension or spending the same $100,000 to buy a premium one-word domain with a .com extension?

I would take the latter any day.

On the original article there are 19 more people sharing their opinions on the matter, so check it out. Feel free to drop a comment below with your take, too.



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23 Responses to “What do You Think About the Liberalization of Domain Name Extentions?”

  • Courtland

    I think this will be very confusing. I mean, I don’t want to sit in front of my computer trying to find the correct website. Why don’t we just stick with the common domain extensions.

  • hikaye

    I really think ICANN is going too far. I’m also a domainer. I get an email about new rules and regulations every other week, if not day. Or maybe it just seems like it. It agree with every post in this thread, it’s getting to be too much. If the .com name is taken just leave it at that.

    Kane

  • Medyum

    Not much of it so far. It is hard enough to get clients to blog let alone spend 200k on a domain name extension that may or may not do anything for them at all.

  • Tommy Kirt

    I’ve got no idea how it’s all going to turn out, but the old extensions will still be the premium and trusted options for a very long time to come amongst most internet users. It’s just human nature to stick with and trust the things they know.

    As for typing .porn or .whatever into the address bar… who does that? People just use Google to find something and bookmark it if they like it.

    Seems like it could be a real issue when it comes to hitting the top of the SERPs and fooling people to go to a fake site when a fair bit of weight is still placed on the domain name, and now webmasters can have the same domain but a different extension to the most sought after addresses.

  • Microsoft Office Trainer

    Have to agree that this will only work for the big corps.

  • Paul OFlaherty

    It’s all about credibility and practicality at the end of the day and this move doesn’t promote either.

    Would you ever really think of typing in “home.microsoft”? I don’t think so, microsoft.com is more logical, and known.

    Besides, if you did pay out the $100000 dollars for a .microsoft or whatever domain, you’d still be in the same position where you simply have to won the .com as well. So why bother?

  • Vic

    This move seems to be impractical. Why did they just consider the .inc or .corp? These extensions will make it not confusing for internet users.

  • Andy

    This really going to get the internet more confusing. I don’t like the Idea

  • Georjina

    Late to the party but I have to agree with Christopher on this one. How will consumers know that the site .microsoft is really from the company? Right now you can type in your-own-domain.com and get thousands of equally unrelated, unreliable sites.

    I think this is going to be more a hindrance than a help in the long run for any business. With ICANN being the ‘big dog’ making the rules, what else is in the pipeline for those of us who have hundreds of domains we haven’t used yet…

    Guess we’ll know soon enough.

  • bisnis internet

    If it happenned, internet domain will be more confusing. Better still in this system.

  • Vikas

    R they serious about liberalization????

    How are we supposed to remember all extension when we confuse with these available few.

  • odtaa

    I personally believe that the .com or being British, even .co.uk, extensions are useful and give a site some credibility.

    And let’s face it the .info or .biz extensions have not really taken off – though they have helped people who cannot get the essential .com or .net extension.

    I am happy, or would even encourage the porn industry to move over to .xxx or .sex – so people would know what they are getting into or avoiding. I was helping a charity which had a name that could be confused and it made it difficult getting the right domain.

    I can see for some big corporations that having .microsoft for example might be essential for their image and it will keep the big boys, lawyers and consultants in big bonuses, but won’t have a real effect on the rest of us.

    As some people will be buying the extensions to sell on they will reduce the value of the .com, but I would reckon only slightly. I could see someone making some cash out .blog for example.

    For most bloggers and small scale web users it will not have much effect beyond stopping them being held to ransom by the domain hoarders.

    If you have a domain then content and successful marketing is still more important than what extension you have.

  • van contract hire

    According to ICANN, the process could take the current number of 21
    internet extensions, such as .com, .org and .net, up to more than 500
    over the next two years.

  • Seo Optimizasyon

    This type of domain extensions could ve register for only very famous worldwide companies such as Microsoft,Sony,HP,Google,BMW,Arcelik,beko etc. And companies’ to have their own top level domain extensions,some rules should be valid. Now,in the Internet World,there are so many domain extensions,why not world wide companies have their name extensions.

  • Paul

    It helps no one but big corps willing to pay the fees for their brand names, and ICANN who receive the fees.

  • Nicholas Z. Cardot

    I had not yet heard about this. Thanks for the information.

  • InternetHow

    I think it is really good. Extensions should also be forced to be used according the sites’ category.

  • Eric

    I think it is frustrating that so many .com names are taken by people just holding on to them. I recently tried to by a name — a name with no site up — and it was taken. Its an old gripe, but a true one.

    In the end, .com and .org will be the only ones that matter, really.

  • Boerne Search

    I really think ICANN is going too far. I’m also a domainer. I get an email about new rules and regulations every other week, if not day. Or maybe it just seems like it. It agree with every post in this thread, it’s getting to be too much. If the .com name is taken just leave it at that.

    Kane

  • Jaan Kanellis

    Not much of it so far. It is hard enough to get clients to blog let alone spend 200k on a domain name extension that may or may not do anything for them at all.

  • Christopher Ross

    I simply can’t see this ending well. I appreciate that we’re running out of good .com names but still, allowing us to register .apple or .microsoft will just add more confusion to an already technical environment. Chris

  • Tehseen | RechargeYourMind

    I agree with Acia. It becomes really hard to remember the domain keyword as well as the extension.

    I think they already have too many that are useless like .travel or .jobs

  • Acia Berry

    It gets confusing for the consumer to try to find a site when the extension is not .com. I often confuse org extensions with gov extensions and end up somewhere that I have not intended.

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