Domain-Name Bosses Approve Huge Expansion

Forget .com: we'll soon see sites ending in brand and city names
By Matt Cantor,  Newser Staff
Posted Jun 20, 2011 9:54 AM CDT
ICANN Approves Huge Expansion of Domain-Name Suffixes

It's a huge day for the Internet: The organization in charge of online addresses has OKed a giant boost in domain endings, giving the green light to nearly any word in any language, reports the New York Times. The Internet Corporation for the Assignment of Web Names and Numbers "has opened the internet's addressing system to the limitless possibilities of the human imagination," says its CEO. The group will start accepting applications for the suffixes next year, the BBC notes, and cities (think .berlin) and companies (like .canon) are expected to be first in line.

But critics argue that the current system offers more than enough naming options. Trademark owners fear that the expansion will allow more room for opportunists to gobble up their brand names. Others complain the move will mainly help Internet name registrars. “The more domains they have out there, the more names they can register and the more money they take in,” notes one opponent. Icann says it will have protections in place—including a $185,000 price tag for such extensions. Click through for more on the domain-name debate, or the controversy over .xxx. (More ICANN stories.)

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