by Mike Masnick

New TLDs Announced

from the who-cares? dept

After waiting forever, ICANN finally got around to assigning the new top level domains. Someone here at Techdirt is associated with one of the companies that "won", so I won't be too harsh... However, this all seems a little pointless to me. First, people have been waiting for this forever. The delay had something to do with concerns over trademark questions, and yet, those haven't been answered at all. Then, while ICANN says they went through a large number of proposals before deciding which ones to chose, the results still seem incredibly arbitrary. To be honest, a lot of this has the feel of something that a lot of companies are hyping up, but which might not really be as big as everyone thinks it is.

Reader Comments (rss)

(Flattened / Threaded)

  1. identicon
    Ryan, Nov 17th, 2000 @ 7:33am

    No Subject Given

    I agree mike but when we (sorry I couldn't resist) applied for .name it was as a proof of concept. I know a lot of people are sending out harsh criticisms of the names that were accepted but they're all different types of domain level experiments (i.e. .aero will probably be run by sita and was probably granted as an experiment into vertical level domains for specific industries, to indentify if they might be useful).

    But remember if these "experiments" succeed icann plan on continuing a roll out of further general top level domains.

    p.s. I think that chicken.coop is going to be a hot one (the guys at Slashdot are getting all excited about it).

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  2. identicon
    Ryan, Nov 17th, 2000 @ 7:38am

    But what are they going represent?

    I actually had a long tirade about what are they going to represent, but I actually went and did a little work, and for anyone besides myself who is still puzzled about what exactly these new names are supposed to represent, check out this AP article on Yahoo. It gives a brief rundown of what the domains are supposed to cover. I think .info and .pro are my favourites, while .aero and possibly .coop probably could have been replaced by a better choice - they're my least favourite, and in my opinion, the least useful (I hope no one at Techdirt was associated with these). Of course, that's just my opinion. My suggestion? I'm sure ICANN even got it a few times - .crud or .crap to help clear out all the useless stuff. Or even better, relegate all banner ads, popup ads, etc. to a simple .ad domain, so we'd never have to see them again.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  3. identicon
    Ryan, Nov 17th, 2000 @ 8:27am

    Re: No Subject Given

    That's a very good point (the experimental). I didn't even think about that. Of course, as time rolls on, will that mean that general names like .com will not be used much at all, or will only very general vertical level domains be granted? Also, if that happens, regulations will have to be put in place to define who fits in where - will this turn the internet into a more have and have-not sort of place? ie If you are an airplane business (I'm not very creative this morning), but you don't quite fit the requirements for .aero for one reason or another, will you be looked down because you have to adopt a lowly .com name?

    BTW, I actually think that the .name concept is pretty good, once they figure out how to manage 10 million John Smiths applying for webpages. I for one don't want to be typing in John.Smith7684766.name, or even worse, searching for the one John Smith page I want amongst 9000000 of them.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  4. identicon
    Ryan, Nov 17th, 2000 @ 8:34am

    Re: But what are they going represent?

    What did you think about .name? I'd be interested in getting an unbiased opinion (feel free to dis' it if you don't like it)?

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  5. identicon
    Ryan, Nov 17th, 2000 @ 11:36am

    Re: But what are they going represent?

    Last night I was driven nuts by the decision process, it felt almost like a football game that's tied up until the last minute. I've slept like 3 hours today and yesterday. I actually think that ICANN are being a little more original by "testing" these strings out (I think a lot of people don't really understand ICANN's motivation for these TLD's).

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  6. identicon
    mhh5, Nov 17th, 2000 @ 11:58am


    I'm confused by who's who in the Ryan posts here... :)

    Anyway, I don't think these new TLDs solve any problems. It's not like anyone is really enforcing the strict adherence to being an org to have a dot-org. Are the owners of the new TLDs going to be more strict about who can get a domain? If I buy a domain, can I sell it to whoever I want to? Can I sell it for millions if some fool is willing to pay? I guess I need to read up on why ICANN thought this would change anything....

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  7. icon
    Mike (profile), Nov 17th, 2000 @ 1:16pm

    Re: Ryans...

    Yeah, I agree, that I'm not sure why this is being done. If this is a test (as one of the Ryan's implies) then, why isn't that clear. Why isn't ICANN saying "this is a test"? For all the time it took and planning that went into this, it seems pretty muddied.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  8. icon
    Mike (profile), Nov 17th, 2000 @ 4:07pm

    NTK's take

    Personally, I like NTK's take on the matter:
    .pro, .biz, .museum, .aero, .mudpie, .coop, .seagull, .info, .name? ".NAME"? I'm sorry, but isn't that the kind of top level domain proposal you'd get if you grabbed a seven-year old off the streets, and told him to come up with a suggestion or you'd give him a black eye? Oddly, that seemed to be exactly the procedure chosen by ICANN for their final consultation on Wednesday in LA. In fact, we rather warmed to the event, from the moment that Esther Dyson stormed onto the Webcast with apparent backing from Joni Mitchell, to the Gong Show spectacle of dozens of sweaty suits having 90 seconds to justify their sorry existence. Vint Cerf was excellent in his role as a ghostly Obi Ben Kenobi, and a particular commendation goes to the head of the dotNom consortium, who spent his three minutes berating the whole procedure, only to have second thoughts moments after a stern, "That's Life"-style, dressing down from Esther ("Don't you want to talk about your domain then?" "Uh. Can I have another three minutes?") These are the benefits of open process: any ICANNspiracy theories evaporated in the face of the truth, which was as arbitrary and bizarre as anyone could have hoped. As St. Cerf repeatedly hinted, the whole thing was really just a "proof of concept" trial, and still sucks in several ways. Mainly the "Sunrise" provision of many of the chosen domains means that legitimate businesses (latin for "those with lawyers") get to grab their choice of domains before the grubby masses. Like anyone cares: the "concept" being "proven" here, we reckon, is that any number of top level domains are possible and, hopefully, inevitable. And the more that the gTLD hopefuls and domain-snapping corporations realise they're about to be sucker-punched thousands of times, the more we can watch the whining on RealVideo. Encore!

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  9. identicon
    mhh5, Nov 17th, 2000 @ 5:41pm

    Re: NTK's take

    I like the "any number of TLDs are possible" comment. I've always wondered why there's a limit. We should just make make TLDs unlimited in size, and *really* use it only for classification. By that I mean TLDs could be a really long string of keywords, but in order to be in that TLD, you actually have to prove that you are associated with every keyword. Yes, I realize it makes it impossible to type in a URL, but then I think URLs are outdated and browsers should be able incorporate a mini-search engine to get you to the URL you want to go to. There are probably tons of technical problems with this proposal, but what do I know anyway? I just think there's a better way to organize the net. What that way is... I guess we'll find out someday.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  10. identicon
    Ryan, Nov 20th, 2000 @ 2:32am

    Re: NTK's take

    I have to admit that I'm not too certain about a mini search engine, they still aren't accurate enough to have to use one everytime you want to type in a domain. Having unlimited tlds with classification systems would be a pain in the butt to implement (we looked into when we applied for .name and it turned out to be unfeasible). But your right, eventually these gtlds will be extended to a much larger number and broader array of types.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

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