Tuesday, June 07, 2005

New Top-Level Domains

Wouldn't it be great if you could tell if a web site was "adult-only" just by looking at its name? New top-level domain spaces may address this very issue.

Several new top-level domains are likely to be approved at ICANN. Current valid top-level domains include .com, .net, .org, .gov, .mil, .biz, .info, and two-letter country codes (like .us and .tw).

The new proposals include .cat, .jobs, .mobi, .post, .travel, and .xxx (I would love to register "www.cat.cat" or "www.meow.cat).

A couple years back, ICANN approved .biz and .info, and were considering .name for personal sites. I was wondering why they did not approved .xxx at that time, but it did not even make it into the final consideration.

It would be great if ICANN would actually enforce the proper use of top-level domains... For example, it would be great if all porn sites in the US had to register a .xxx domain and use that as their main site. It would be great if only non-profits could register .org domains.

The only true enforcement of registration types are .gov and .mil, because nobody is dumb enough to actually try registering a government or military domain without proper authority.

Frankly, I do not see how the influx of new top-level domain spaces will make a real difference. Are we really going to force people to switch their location on the Internet? Not likely. If ICANN were to enforce all new registrations to adopt only the appropriate top-level domain, then maybe there is a future for soem of these names. Otherwise, I doubt .xxx or .post will get any more usage than the previously approved .biz or .info domain spaces.

ICANN is a non-profit organization responsible for IP address space allocation and domain name system management, among other things.

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