The Fascinating World of Top Level Domains

Yesterday was another big day for the Internet when details of who had applied for what ” gerneric top level domains” (gTLD). A top level domain is the bit that comes after the final period in a domain name, so .com, etc. A process was begun a while back to open out the allocation of gTLDs and allowing anyone to apply for a gTLD so I could apply for .neil, for example. In practice only those with deep pockets could apply and it is fascinating to see who has.

Ignoring that this could be incredibly confusing for users the opening up of gTLDs gives brands an opportunity to create a more unique presence on the web. So to that end the BBC have applied for .bbc. Similarly ITV have applied for .itv (sorry Apple! Who incidentally have applied for .apple). Other UK based businesses that have similarly applied for a gTLD are Next, Books, Barclays, Jaguar, Land Rover, ASDA and the Guardian. Someone has also applied for .london, presumably as a way to create a revenue stream selling domains to London based businesses and individuals.

Further afield car manufacturer Fiat has applied for .fiat, .ferrari and .alforomeo amongst others. Google meanwhile, under the name “Charleston Road Registry Inc.” has applied for over 100 including the obvious .google and .android to the less clear .rsvp and .soy.

As I say the list is an interesting read as an insight into what companies believe to be important and who is missing from the list. I have created a Google doc of the list that you can have a play with that you can access here. If you would like to see the original list that is available from ICANN.