Dyson says new gTLDs will kill the DNS

Kevin Murphy, February 7, 2012, 15:00:50 (UTC), Domain Tech

Former ICANN chair Esther Dyson thinks apps and new gTLDs will cause internet users to abandon domain names.

In an article for TechPresident entitled “Is the Open Web Doomed? Open Your Eyes and Relax“, Dyson writes:

Right now, we’re moving slowly from open data and APIs and standards, to a world of Facebook and apps. We’re likely to see abandonment of the DNS by consumers both because of those apps, and a tragedy of the commons where new Top-Level Domain names (.whatevers and .brands) confuse users and lead to more use of the search box or links within apps.

The point seems to run counter to the rest of her argument, which is that the open web will continue to be used even while Facebook carves away its own little corner of it and that the whole “walled garden vs open web” war is fought in cycles.

(At least, I think that’s what she’s saying, it’s not an easy read.)

I always find these arguments confusing.

If consumers are not using the DNS, where are these “search boxes” and “links within apps” sending them? IP addresses? How do the consumers know they got to where they wanted to go?

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Comments (2)

  1. Tim says:

    Domain names or DNS will still be used. I think the point she is trying to make is that finding what you want, which today most likely takes place with the usage of SEs (Google primiarily) or direct navigation, will be used a lot less. People will start to click their way to the places they want to go. Places like FB will help faciliate this process where they are evolving to become a lot more than just a social network. Also, mobile devices and tablets will be used a lot more in the future which are not apps suitable of doing a lot of typing. It’s no wonder Google fears Facebook more than any competitor today.

  2. When people use links and search engines and social media to navigate to a site or page, the trust in the validity of the site is transferred from the DNS to the referrer. And when I look at Google, Facebook and my connections on social media through which I am fed content, I trust them better than seeing a DNS that I may or may not recognize and trust. It is in the best interest of these content providers (in the case of Google and the like) to properly vet their content. In the case of Facebook and the like, it is in their best interest to not only vet the content but also to ensure that the actors in the network are trustworthy.

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