Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Dot Anything

Remember the good ole days when a 212 area code meant NYC, 215 meant Philly, and .com meant business web address. Well the proliferation of smart phones and websites means that there is a shortage and the we must continue to grow the numbers. "The new rules affect what the industry calls top-level domain names, the familiar dot-coms and dot-nets that end every Web address. Now, instead of having to use one of those existing forms, users will be able to end their addresses with the name of their company, such as dot-Ford, or their city, like dot-Berlin."

But with this growth comes the need for zoning and now it seems it is harder than ever to know where a phone number is generated from or where a website originates. Exciting , yet problematic. "The shift, however, could also cause anxiety and disputes among governments, companies and other entities in safeguarding their brands and identities in cyberspace. Those seeking religious or political names, for example, could lead to sensitive situations."

Nothing can stop the proliferation of addresses, but certainly governance can help to better manage it. It certainly may hurt squatters to websites who hope to force brands to pay for rights to their name. Yet I am confident that new opportunities will present themselves. And in cases when companies with the same name in different industries each want access to their domain name, challenges will arise as well. It is the start of a whole new internet and let the battles begin.