ICANN HAZ DOT CAT? Get Ready For Another Domain Gold Rush!

They may not allow domain tasting, however Internet regulator ICANN has voted unanimously to expand the number of top level domain names, as the BBC reports.

The decision provides companies the opportunity to turn their brands into web addresses, while individuals could potentially use their names. A second proposal, that would introduce domain names written in scripts such as Asian and Arabic, was also approved.

“We are opening up a new world and I think this cannot be underestimated,”

said Roberto Gaetano, a member of the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN).

Another Domain Gold Rush!

ICANN has been working on the move for nearly six years.

Some companies have used the current system to suit their own needs with country domains, such as .tv , which was originally created to designate the Polynesian island of Tuvalu, but ended up being adopted by many companies in the television industry. Others have been even more creative – Can you say “del.icio.us?”

The new plan is sure to inspire a rush for thousands of new top level domains based on any string of letters, providing a “business plan and technical capacity” can be demonstrated.

Expect the new system to come replete with contentious battles and bidding wars as companies move to secure domain names based on their intellectual property.

The new system is anticipated to come in the next year, so get ready domain buyers! There’s gold in them there extensions!

  • http://www.jozsoft.com/blog/ Joe Hall

    Is there any information on the pricing model that will be used? I heard that they will be rather expensive.

    Joe Hall’s last blog post..Google Shows Gay Porn In Ads

  • http://wyblog.us/ Chris

    I’ve heard pricing in the US$100,000 range, subject to competitive bidding and other machinations associated with “dispute resolution”.

    FWIW, I lived through the Great Usenet Renaming and I suspect that was a walk in the park compared to the technical, policy, and administrative headaches to come as a result of this decision.

    Chris’s last blog post..The right of the people to keep and bear Arms shall not be infringed

  • http://trademarks.smiglaw.com/blog/ Owen Smigelski

    This will certainly open up a flood of new domain names, however it’s likely people will be more confused and thus rely on search engines more to find “official” websites.

    On a side note, your LOL cat is SOL:


  • http://www.mbwebdesign.co.uk MB Web Design

    This is going to make web searchs so much more important – its bad enough trying to remember if the extension is .com, .co.uk, .net, .org, .name etc. Now we will have a pile of others to contend with. To many less technical users, there are .coms and nothing else.

  • http://www.freeneverendingsuccess.com Rahil

    Price range as started by chris is bit too high!! wish it was cheaper!

  • http://www.otlacan.com Otilia Otlacan

    I’ve also heard $100 k and, expensive as it may seem, I’ve also heard many start-ups willing to foot the bill as they ended up with whatever domains were left or even forced to re-brand from their initial plan once they figured there’s no suitable domain. I think many lawyers are rejoicing :-D

    Otilia Otlacan’s last blog post..Publicis Groupe Launches VivaKi, a New Growth Engine for the New Media and Digital Environment

  • http://widestep.com Keylogger Guy

    So new age of Internet domain names will come, does somebody know when?

  • http://www.TheFreelanceNation.com WordGuy

    Does anybody know where I can get the ‘Minutes’ from the meeting? I’d like to know more about the details of the implementation. If I’m Dell Computers, do I really want http://www.Porn.dell (or worse) out in the marketplace? if I spend $100k (which seems cheap for large corps), can’t I restrict those who can and cannot register domains under my trademark? If I can restrict registration and therefore usage, I don’t see how this is going to be a gold rush for domain investors. If you can reg ‘em, you can’t resell ‘em or develop them. Seems like a gold rush for ICANN in the form of a bunch of $100k fees.

    If anybody has insight to this, please chime in!


  • http://www.TheFreelanceNation.com WordGuy

    If you CAN’T reg ‘em, you CAN’T resell ‘em or develop them.

  • http://www.seoresults.co.za Web Marketing Man

    This has been badly needed for far too long! Expect price to have little impact on uptake here!

  • http://www.TagTeamAdvertising.com TagTeam Advertising

    I don’t see much benefit to domainers, either. What I do see is the ability for a company to control it’s brand both internally and externally. $100k is pretty cheap advertising if you consider that employee email activities would be branded, as well as any external links that link back to my site. What changes, if any, will Google make in the algorithm? Will a URL that has a ‘branded suffix’ get more weight since it has the name included in the domain? Unless, like WordGuy brought up, companies can’t control who registers domains that include their suffix, than there is no benefit for domainers. This would be pure marketing.

  • http://beyondpr.blogspot.com Joel

    This is a nightmare for brand owners as they will have to buy their brand names with whatever suffixes others come up with (.food, .london, .shop….). I agree with WordGuy, nice little earner for ICann.

    Joel’s last blog post..Icann’s new naming system is a brand owner’s nightmare

  • http://www.TagTeamAdvertising.com TagTeam Advertising

    Joel brings up an interesting point…generic terms! Is someone going to spend $100k to register the suffix .food, .london, .shop? Sure it would start a TRUE gold rush and add to the economy, but what advantage is it to the entity who registers the suffix if they can’t own it? Does the entity who registers the suffix get first dibs on domain names associated with that suffix? If so, sign me up! $100k for first pick of a bunch of generic single word domains associated with .pets or .porn or .city? That’s an EASY investment! Me thinks there will either be a run to try and trademark generic terms (Apple?) or this will be limited to existing brands and not generic terms. Either way, sounds like a box of Pandora’s worms. :)

  • http://www.TagTeamAdvertising.com TagTeam Advertising

    Joel brings up an interesting point… generic terms! Is someone going to spend $100k to register the suffix .food, .london, .shop? Sure it would start a TRUE gold rush and add to the economy, but what advantage is it to the entity who registers the suffix if they can’t own it? Does the entity who registers the suffix get first dibs on domain names associated with that suffix? If so, sign me up! $100k for first pick of a bunch of generic single word domains associated with .pets or .porn or .city? That’s an EASY investment! Me thinks there will either be a run to try and trademark generic terms (Apple?) or this will be limited to existing brands and not generic terms. Either way, sounds like a box of Pandora’s worms. :)

  • Pingback: Joe Hall » ICANN Hands Out SEO Gold Nuggets to Large Corporations()

  • http://www.esiss.com Michael D. Colyott

    How does one find out what is in the process before the news is released that all the decisions have been made and it is a done deal? Is it possible? As business people, we all have an interest in the future.

  • http://www.futurefactory-software.com Warenwirtschaft

    It could be, that this new systems takes the money out of the domain market. Why should i pay a fortune for a domainname with pizza or any other word, if there are hundreds of TLD to choose from. Pizza.com, Pizza.pizza pizza.washington etc.
    Pizza.com suddenly is not so expensive any more if companies just can pick another Top Level Domain.

  • http://www.seopositive.com SeoPositive

    again… Price is a little too high.

  • http://www.poems.md Ashley

    I should say the price is too high

  • Sean Maguire

    @Joe Hall – Seems with all of the misinformation of the pricing models, I may do a follow up.

    @Owen – SOL for my CAT!!! Oh no!!! I didn’t realized the Catalan people had their own tld. Maybe dot spot!

    @keylogger – I’m told it will begin rolling out in about a year. Of course, with ICANN you never know. It took six years of debate just to make the decision.

    @WordGuy – Haven’t seen a transcript, but I’ll check. If so, I’ll link to it in f/u.

    @Joel – It coudl very well become somewhat of a nightmare and cause people/companies to spend money they otherwise might not want to.

  • http://www.netage.co.za Goran Web Design

    I just don’t get it. There are millions of words, who gets to have what. Granted if you own the trademark worldwide on your brand its obvious that you get it. But keywords like .business. It cannot be whoever pays the most gets it, $100,000.

    Anyways there is not enough money in the world to buy every possible variation of .domainname

  • http://www.blogcontentprovider.com Chris McElroy

    If you register a TLD, you become the registry for that TLD and have the option of allowing others to register domain names in your tld and you get paid for each registration. For some tlds 100k is not bad and you can make it up in domain sales.

    From a marketing perspective, it will help companies brand their name better than the current system.

    Currently there are 1000’s of tlds already created and operational in other roots outside of ICANN’s control.

    Many of them will likely protect their legal first come, first serve claim to the generic tlds they created and have operated for years. I know I will protect the tld I currently own.

    So while it may seem a land rush is coming in the tld market, many have already laid claim to many tlds and have spent money to make them operational.

    The land rush will come when people want domains on gernertic tlds that are really viable for commerce.

    As for the value of dot coms dropping, some will, some won’t. Business.com would still hold a lot of value. Business.biz doesn’t even compare.

    Chris McElroy’s last blog post..How A Blog Writer Drives Traffic To Your Landing Pages

  • http://www.exposedseo.com/ Mr Marketing

    I think this might become slightly confusing for the user. Now days you can add .com to a company name and the chances are, it is going to be there. What happens if everyone starts using their own individual extension? Besides, think about all the software upgrades that will be needed from the smallest scripts like submit forms to Google algos.

    Mr Marketing’s last blog post..My way of generating revenue with BANS (Build a niche store)

  • Crystal

    The thing is it is not juat a flat $100K and you’re done like it to just register something.com (and I’ve seen up to 500K also). You would have to prove you are capable of providing registrar type services and managing the database(s), program(s), etc. So you’d have to cost in management of the registrar services, equipment, etc. into the total cost of ownership. Supposedly you could choose to be open (to the public) or a private (limited to your approval).

  • http://www.erikvossman.com Erik

    It’ll be interesting to see how this works itself out. I’m still up in the air whether it will be “great for the internet.” I can see where it will make for more specific content based worlds, but it’ll be tough to remember every single .whatever along with the prefix to that. Even if it is .dell or .pepsi, it’ll be annoying at first.

    But then again I haven’t thought it completely through.

    Does anyone know exactly how this will work? Let’s say dell does get .dell. Will you only be able to buy through dell to get .dell? That would make sense. But what about generics or the coveted, .xxx, will godaddy and the like be able to offer these? This will make for some junk names.

    Erik’s last blog post..Wanna Buy Some Blogs?

  • Bob

    Can anyone comment on any immediate impact from the ICANN decision and how it has effected the values of traditional domain names? I am trying to bid for a .com, and am wondering if the price was just lowered – perhaps dramatically.

    Thanks in advance.

  • http://www.InvestInURLs.com Domain Investments


    This will not have a short-term effect on the .com TLD. If anything, I think .com prices will rise long-term as more and more options crowd and confuse the market.

    Domain Investor

  • http://foolishmumbles.com Top Rated Digital

    Whenever this happens, it feels like a swarm of used car salesmen have descended on the internet. Maybe, it’s time to join the crowd?

    Top Rated Digital’s last blog post..The Top 10 Digital Cameras Ripped Apart

  • http://www.PetProductsDelivered.com/blog Kimberly Spencer

    That’s a wonderful blog entry, thanks for sharing. We just started a blog ourselves and I’m a complete newbie at this so kudos for such a good job on your blog! Good read by the way, thanks again for your efforts, I very much appreciated reading your thoughts. :-)

    Kimberly Spencer’s last blog post..Welcome to PetProductsDelivered.com Blog!