In a major shakeup for the Internet, the global Internet governing body ICANN has voted to allow any word or name to be used as an Internet suffix.
Currently the number of suffixes, commonly known as TLDs (Top Level Domain) sits at 22 and includes '.co.' country variations that bring the total up to 250, and other common ones for organisations and governments. This new change would allow domain names with any ending to be registered and approved.
This is good news for the adult industry which has long been fighting for a .xxx domain name to help them maintain the seperation of their industry that so many parents and families organisation have been calling for. It also means that many companies will be able to capitalise on the change.
Rob Beckstrom, the president and chief executive of ICANN said in a statement "Icann has opened the internet's addressing system to the limitless possibilities of the human imagination, No one can predict where this historic decision will take us."
New TLDs we can expect would include .google, .coke and .apple. We could also expect some to be used for resale or user profiles, such as mikehalsey.fb for Facebook.
Before you rush to register your new .sarah tld however you should know that it won't be cheap to register for your own TLD. The cost will be $185,000 (£114,00). The TLDs will only be available to companies and they will have to show they have a legitimate claim to the TLD as part of the applications process.
Applications for the new TLDs will begin on the 12th January 2012 and are the culmination of six years of discussions on the future of the domain name system. This might be hard to believe but the first domain name, .com, which was also originally intended to be used just by companies, was released 26 years ago.
It can be expected that most major companies will take up the new domains though how popular they will be compared to .com remains to be seen. The public are used to the current domain name system and may find a move to .google confusing. For now we can probably expect such names to be used simply for competitions and promotions.Advertisement
Ghacks is a technology news blog that was founded in 2005 by Martin Brinkmann. It has since then become one of the most popular tech news sites on the Internet with five authors and regular contributions from freelance writers.