New General Use Domain Extensions Expected Summer 2008

By on May 11, 2007

ICANN is calling for public opinion on the development of new gTLDs (generic top-level domains such as .com, .org, etc.) You can find out more about the process on the organization’s website where they have setup a “New gTLDs–Frequently Asked Questions” page. In an announcement on Thursday, President and CEO of ICANN, Dr. Paul Twomey shares his thoughts.

“This is all about choice. We want the diversity of the world’s people, geography and business to be able to be represented in the domain name system. That is why it’s so important for people to participate in the development of a new gTLD process.”

“If the new approval process comes on-line as planned, the global Internet could see new top-level domains added and available between June and August 2008.”

Many domainers continue to be skeptical about the need for alternative gTLDs. Frank Schilling, one of the most successful domain investors, has some good ideas on the topic that I tend to agree with. He believes that more gTLDs are pointless unless they are anything short of a direct competitor to .com. (He suggests .web would be a good candidate) Schilling also believes “shadow TLDs” or miss-spellings of existing domains should be introduced to deliver that traffic back to the web developers as opposed to the internet browser giants such as Microsoft (IE) and Mozilla (Firefox) who earn millions of dollars in revenue from domain extension miss-types.

The Houston Chronicle mentions that “Some ICANN critics have complained that the agency has been slow to approve new names and that the procedures have sometimes been arbitrary. Businesses and trademark owners, meanwhile, worry that more names will lead to more cybersquatting, the practice of grabbing names before companies can in hopes of selling them at a premium.”

When new extensions are introduced there is sure to be mad rush of registrations. I don’t recommend that you get caught up in the hype. As I have mentioned before, the risk factor for “.com” is significantly less and it’s popularity has stood the test of time.

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About Mark Fulton

Mark is the Founder of DotSauce Magazine and a full time web developer, domain investor, SEO and online marketing professional residing in North Carolina, USA. Visit MarkFulton.com for information on freelance website development, SEO and consultation services.