Posted In: Generic Top Level Domains

Debate Continues Over New gTLDs

When ICANN first announced its plans to release new generic top level domains (gTLDs), and the process by which they would do so, they sparked a debate that has only intensified as those plans were solidified and the time for their implementation draws near. Skeptics worry about the potential legal and financial ramifications of opening the flood gates for top level domains that could include brand names, company names, trademarks, and the like, and proponents celebrate the vast expansion of available domains that will likely result. published today an article by Deanna Conn and Victoria E. Tandy, of law firm Quarles & Brady LLP on the topic. It is a succinct and informative overview of the process and pros and cons of the release of new gTLDs, and should help people who haven’t been following the story get caught up. To paraphrase from their synopsis, the general pros and cons are as follow:

» New gTLDs will increase the opportunity for expression as well as competition online
» The rapid expansion of domain names may accelerate the adoption of an expanded IP addressing scheme
» The expense and process involved in getting one of these new top level domains will discourage spammers and domain tasters from grabbing up names with the hope of selling them for profit.

» Companies who are already having difficulties and spending large amounts of money protecting their names, brands, and trademarks, may see those expenses skyrocket.
» The cost of application is very high, but may be necessary to protect trademarks, etc.
» There will likely be disputes between companies with the same or similar names, even if they are in different industries.
» Registered trademarks will not be automatically reserved as a gTLD.

It will be interesting to see how this development plays out. Many companies, and even some government institutions, are already exploring the potential possibilities of unique gTLDs (New York City is an example), and 101domain is looking forward to the increase in variety and availability of unique domain names which may have been impossible to get before because of squatters and the like. We will continue to keep you updated as news and developments occur, so keep up with the blog and our newsletter!