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Here's a transcript of an informative article about .BIZ and .US that recently ran in Finance Director Europe:
New domains for a new Internet
While it is clear that the heady days of the dot-com gold rush are over, it is equally clear that the Internet is a valid business channel that can complement, or even replace, existing communications channels. However, even with years of innovation that have radically redefined the parameters of the Internet, the dot-com domain hasn't been upgraded in its 15 years of existence. The time is here for new domains that are built for the modern Internet, helping it to deliver on its potential for years to come.
Narrowcasting the 'Net
The Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) recently approved seven new generic Top Level Domains in order to narrowcast the Internet more efficiently. These new domains will assist in categorising sites more effectively, making it easier and more secure for people to find the information they want. Previously, legitimate businesses, personal home pages and everything else all shared the same domain allocation and space on the Internet.
The lack of Internet order makes it difficult for users to verify what type of site they are visiting. The new domains help separate businesses, personal sites and other sites into distinct Internet regions. They include dot-biz, for companies conducting business on the Internet; dot-info, to provide an appropriate area for information; dot-name, for personal names and sites; as well as dot-pro, dot-aero, dot-museum and dot-coop.
Also, the release of the country-specific dot-us domain offers European businesses a means of targeting the American market more appropriately for the first time. All of the new purpose-specific domains are intended to ease the transition from today's undefined, parameter-less Internet into the business, communication and entertainment medium of choice for the future.
Fool's gold domains
With a lack of appropriate domain name options in the late 1990s, a 'land-grab' ensued. Speculators acquired popular dot-com names in the hopes of selling them at vast profits (also known as "cybersquatting"). However, as these registrations have started to expire, and cybersquatting has become less effective, the volume of registered dot-com, dot-net and dot-org domain names has also declined. In fact, State of the Domain, a monthly publication that monitors domain names, reported that these older domains shed 372,140 registrations in March of this year, while dot-biz, dot-info and dot-name grew by 108,519.
A secure place to do business
The introduction of dot-biz and dot-us finally guarantees businesses a more secure, business-oriented space on the Internet. These new domains have expanded security for e-commerce customers with the creation of a 'thick' registry, which includes detailed and searchable information about site owners, as well as a more effective registration process. Companies wanting to register a site need to provide in-depth information about their whereabouts, contact information and more.
This enables the public to precisely track the location or contact details of a site's owner, contributing to a higher level of trust. Currently, the registry that manages the dot-com domain requires only four pieces of information: the IP address, the domain name, the domain's registrar and the expiry date.
These new domains are required to help advance the Internet to its next stage of evolution. They are able to provide a more purposeful identity online, as well as address the concerns that currently hinder the expansion of e-commerce and other Internet-based initiatives. Domains like dot-biz and dot-us are needed if the Internet is truly going to deliver on its promises for the future.
If a man will begin with certainties, he shall end in doubts; but if he will be content to begin with doubts he shall end in certainties. Sir Francis Bacon