What is a gTLD?gTLD = Generic Top Level Domain = What comes after the dot = ‘com‘ in www.thiswebaddress.com
‘.com‘ is a gTLD, as are ‘.net’, ‘.org’, ‘.gov‘ and ‘.edu‘.
Domain Name Levels
In the example www.this.web.address, the top level domain is ‘address‘, thesecond level domain is ‘web‘ and the third level domain is ‘this‘.
What is the ICANN New gTLD Program?ICANN or, Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers is planning to allow organizations globally to apply for the right to operate a new gTLD registryof their choosing and introduce it to for use on the world wide web. They are expecting between 300 to 1000 new gTLD applications. There are already 100 groups who have declared intentions to apply (list) and there are probably hundreds more with plans to apply but remain in stealth mode. (prospective list).
What a gTLD is NOT
A gTLD is NOT a ‘domain name‘. It is a ‘NameSpace‘. Like .com, .net, .org and .de, a gTLD is critical piece of internet infrastructure. It is not meant for individuals or casual users. A gTLD registry is expected to be a functioning technical business, operating in a manner that supports the security and stability of the world wide web. more
When a new gTLD extension is delegated, the registry can, if they choose, make second level domain names beneath it available for registrars to then sell to end users (Registrants) for use as their address on the world wide web.
A gTLD Registry can be a profitable business enterprise for an exciting new business venture.
Internet users can expect to see domain names such as www.hotelrooms.vegas, www.chase.bank, www.indieart.film, www.videofilm.art and many more. ICANN expects New gTLD applications to number between 300 to 1000 (prospective list). This dramatic increase in the number of gTLDs will have far reaching implications. Every internet user will be impacted, especially businesses small to large.
Why New gTLDs?Openness, Change, Innovation
The internet is growing at an astounding rate. In addition to 50,000 new domains coming online every single day, the number of internet users globally will double to over 3 billion within 4 years. Internet commerce is expected to be $1.4 Trillion by 2015. There is insufficient space in the existing gTLD space to accomodate this growth. Even today it is increasingly difficult for entrepreneurs coming online to find a decent name for their business at a reasonable price. Because of this, ICANN is ‘opening up’ the domain name space.
The manner in which people and businesses use and interact with the information super highway is changing everyday. Users are going mobile. Apps are gaining popularity. Social media is huge. Internet search is getting more localized. New gTLDs can help facilitate these changes and more. New domain names and new opportunities can lead to . .
There can many new services and applications for new gTLDs. Already there are plans for gTLDs with special purpose or use that will provide new services. .SECURE, for example, is being developed to provide additional security for its domain users. The truth is, nobody can say exactly what new ideas and innovation may come as a result of the New gTLD Program. What will be the next big.THING? Who knows?
How will New gTLDs happen ?ICANN is the organization charged with the internet Domain Name System (DNS). After years of policy development, working with the internet community, governments and Intellectual property groups, ICANN has approved the New gTLD Applicant Guidebook. The Guidebook , at 360 pages, details the New gTLD Application Process . Applicants for New gTLDs will pay $185,000US application fee and undergo extensive evaluation for technical, financial, and administrative qualifications to operate a gTLD registry in a manner that supports the stability and security of the internet.
When will the New gTLD Program happen?The application window for this first round of New gTLDs opens January 12, 2012 until April 12. 2012. Evaluation, Resolution, and Delegation will take approximately 8 – 18 months, depending upon the type of application and the level of objection or contention. We can expect to see New gTLDs available for distribution and use early in 2013.