Icann releases new domain names

According to the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers, names with the .info suffix will be available as early as August, while .biz will be available on 1 October.

Icann said that .info will be unrestricted and open to any business or individual, while the .biz domain name system will be restricted and open only for commercial or business purposes.

Registry operators NeuLevel (.biz) and Afilias (.info) were among seven registry operators for new domain names selected by Icann last November. Agreements with the remaining five domains – .aero, .coop, .museum, .name and .pro – are expected shortly.

The accreditation means that NeuLevel and Afilias can begin the process of making addresses available. Both companies will allow trademark holders to reserve addresses first. For example, Coca-Cola would be permitted to reserve and before other applicants.

The first round of new top-level domains is considered a ‘proof of concept’ to test and examine different types of top-level domains, registry business models and procedures.

Vint Cerf, chairman of Icann, said: ‘This is a momentous step forward in the continuing evolution of the internet’s domain name system.’

But he stressed that it is just one step among many in a long process of providing consumers with the benefits of competition through a variety of domain name options and services.

Despite recent progress in the area of domain name dispute resolution, along with moves to create additional registries and the formation of new naming organisations, disputes and conflicts over domain names and trademark law are still occurring, according to analysts Gartner.

The likelihood of domain name disputes has not decreased in the past few years and Gartner predicts it will get worse before it gets better.


Seven new domain names approved

Related reading