ICANN Opens Up Internet Domain Free for All

The Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN), who oversee the way internet addresses are assigned, signed off a policy that will set a milestone for the history of the internet.

Historically top-level domains (TLDs), such as .com, .co.uk.org etc could only be bought by those looking to set up a new website. The new internet address shake up now means that people can apply for a website that ends in any collection of letters......but there are catches.

Firstly, the new domains will cost $100,000 each. They don't come cheap, but once you own the TLD domain you can then sell web addresses that fit within that domain. For example, if I purchased .man, I could then sell www.tall.man, www.thin.man, etc.

This will no doubt spark an internet land rush, with entrepreneurs and companies snapping up the domains faster than you can blink. So what will be the most valuable domains? The list is endless, but generic names that have already proved popular in exisiting domain names are likely to go first. Here's a shortlist;
  • .card
  • .hotel
  • .flight
  • .holidays
  • .jobs
If had a spare $100,000, I'd be straight in there. You can apparently write to Icann from April next year, but you need to have a business plan and demonstrate how you would make money from the domain, and how you would support the domain.
The reason for the hefty price tag is that Icann wants to keep demand low to begin with. They say they simply want to recoup the cost of developing the web's infrastructure to cope with the new domains.
Disputed domains will apparently enter into a auction system, and will be sold to the highest bidder.
So let the land rush begin!

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