Back on January 12th of this year, the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) began accepting applications for new generic top-level domains (gTLDs) – the “.com” part of website addresses at $185,000 a pop! Potential domain buyers had until April 12th to submit their application(s), and yes, the $185,000 was for the application fee, alone. At that price, ICANN (non profit) brought in more than $350 million – not too bad!
On the 13th of this month, ICANN released the official list of all 1,930 proposals for these new gTLDs. As you can imagine, there was some overlap in companies wanting to secure the same names. In total, 231 out of the 1,410 unique domain names had two or more applications filed for its ownership. Sounds like there will be some serious fighting over those . . . or should I say “respectful” business negotiations involving high cash payoffs?
The winner of this domain name popularity contest was .app with 13 applications filed to secure its name. The two runners-up were .home and .inc with 11 applications each. Now on the lighter side, some of the funnier names I found included .sucks, .lol, and .wtf! If you want to see the full list of names for yourself, click here.
These new domains are expected to go live on the world wide web by April or May of 2013. Before then, companies tied up in multiple application scenarios (for one domain name) will have to come to terms with all participating parties, or failing that, the coveted domain name will be sent to auction. Experts predict auction price tags to be in the millions. As this is only the reveal, Adrian Kinderis, CEO of ARI Registry Services shed some light on this situation by saying,
“[This] is going to be a be a very long process . . . Reveal day is really just the end of the beginning.”
ICANN is rationalizing the high sticker price for submitting an application, and this extended process in general as a way to weed out any cyber-squatters. ICANN wants all domain names to fall into the right hands, be used appropriately, and be given to the “rightful” owners.
It should be interesting how this all unfolds – I know Google really wants to manage .lol!