Who will manage “dot-radio”?
Four organizations have applied for the registry of that new generic top-level domain. Their applications are part of a planned dramatic expansion in the Internet’s domain name system, so big that some are calling it an Internet “land grab.”
The four applicants for .radio are the European Broadcasting Union, BRS Media, Tin Dale LLC and Afilias Ltd. Radio World had reported earlier that EBU and BRS Media planned to apply.
EBU has said that its application has the backing of the World Broadcasting Unions and has promised that if chosen, it will “create an Internet-based platform where the world’s radio broadcasters could assemble.”
BRS Media has noted that it pioneered industry-specific domains, launching “multimedia-based” TLDs .fm and .am. “The company is well positioned and understands how to manage, operate and market, a new top-level-domain name for a diverse on-air and online radio community,” it wrote in April.
Afilias Ltd. is based in Ireland and began operations in 2001 with the launch of the top-level domain registry for .info. It also manages .mobi and .pro.
Tin Dale LLC is the fourth applicant; website Evolver.fm reports that Tin Dale is part of Donuts.co. The latter is based in Bellevue, Wash., and is a private equity/VC-backed company that applied for more than 300 names. It has stated that it intends “to be a formidable presence in Internet namespace growth.”
The Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers, or ICANN, held a “Reveal Day” in London and released the list of who applied for what. Notable names for which companies applied include .abc, .audio, .bbc, .cbs, .cern, .dtv, .ieee, .java, .music, .video, .WTC and .studio. National Australia Bank Ltd. was the only one applying for .nab.
Notable non-broadcast applications include .porn, .apple, .ketchup, .home, .sucks and .google.
According to an analysis by the publication Fast Company, Amazon was a big applicant, applying for 76 names including .book and .kindle. “Curiously Facebook is notable in its absence from this process — there’s no ‘.facebook’ in the list,” it noted.
A gTLD is an Internet domain name extension such .com, .net, or .org. There are 280 ccTLDs but only 22 “generics” in the domain name system. The plan is to expand that dramatically; Web observers think this expansion will encourage an important evolution in Internet marketing and search. ICANN says it will encourage “online innovation.”
Each registry is responsible for technical management of a top-level domain. “Registries play a role key in the technical management of Internet infrastructure and in stability and security of the Net,” communications attorney Kathy Kleiman of Fletcher Heald Hildreth recently wrote.
ICANN Senior Vice President Kurt Pritz said, “A 60-day comment period begins today, allowing anyone in the world to submit comments on any application, and the evaluation panels will consider them. If anyone objects to an application and believes they have the grounds to do so, they can file a formal objection to the application. And they will have seven months to do that.”
A total of1,930 gTLD applications were received including 116 for “internationalized” domain names with strings in scripts such as Arabic, Chinese and Cyrillic. Applications from Latin America/the Caribbean and Africa would be the first gTLDs from those regions.