Twitter has registered the domain name t.co, to use as a secure URL shortener.
Just minutes ago, t.co started resolving to a page containing this text:
Twitter uses the t.co domain as part of a service to protect users from harmful activity, to provide value for the developer ecosystem, and as a quality signal for surfacing relevant, interesting tweets.
The page links to a FAQ describing its current URL shortener, twt.tl.
Under this program, companies can partner with .CO to get a free premium .co domain if they commit to promote it.
TechCrunch was previously the highest-profile site to join the program, when it registered disrupt.co.
I would say getting Twitter on board definitely beats that deal.
UPDATE: Twitter published a blog post on the launch. I guess they beat me by about three minutes.
“When this is rolled out more broadly to users this summer, all links shared on Twitter.com or third-party apps will be wrapped with a t.co URL,” the firm says.
Probably too soon to say for sure, but it looks like Bit.ly is kinda screwed.