XYZ.com’s new gTLD .xyz has become the first in this round to accrue over half a million domains in its zone file.
This morning I count 500,050 domains in the zone, up 3,485 on yesterday.
The registry has added over 60,000 domains in the last 30 days.
It’s well-known that the large majority of .xyz names have been given away for free, largely without the registrants’ explicit consent, so it’s not a great measure of demand.
Still, it’s a milestone of sorts.
Some percentage of .xyz’s registrants will renew for a fee next year, so the larger its installed base, the larger the number of paid-for domains the registry could wind up with.
Minds + Machines’ first day of general availability for its first six wholly owned new gTLDs has produced some very disappointing numbers.
The company managed to net just 1,694 new domains across .country, .cooking, .vodka, .rodeo, .horse and .fishing combined yesterday, according to this morning’s zone files.
It has fewer than 2,000 names across all six zones.
Meanwhile, .vegas, which also went to GA yesterday, managed to net 2,933 new domains, ending the day at 3,903.
Here’s a table of M+M’s performance over its first seven or eight hours of GA, which began at 1600 UTC yesterday.
|Net Gain||Total Domains|
Assuming the zone files are fresh, it’s a poor first day for the company whichever way you look at it, especially given that M+M has been accepting pre-registrations in its TLDs since November 2013.
As well as being vertically integrated, M+M has about 80 third-party registrars on board to sell its names, including the largest.
Afilias’ .organic, which also went to GA yesterday, shows just one new registration today.
However, this can be attributed to the fact that registrants need to submit credentials for manual verification before their new domains are allowed to go live in the zone file.
The prospect of a healthy .scot gTLD would be improved if this week’s Scottish independence referendum produces a majority “Yes” vote.
People living in Scotland this Thursday get the opportunity to vote to split the country from the United Kingdom after over 300 years together.
While the No campaign seems to have been winning most of the opinion polls recently, the margin has been reportedly narrowing, and there are still large numbers of undecided voters.
Whichever way the vote goes, Dot Scot will take .scot to general availability next Tuesday.
The registry is backed by Scotland’s first minister, Alex Salmond, the leading voice of the Yes campaign, and it seems inevitable that a Yes vote will bode much better for its business prospects.
A vote to split would no doubt create a new sense of national pride in the small majority of Yes voters, spurring registrations in that community.
But, more importantly, it will mean that .scot will become, I believe, Scotland’s de facto ccTLD.
If Scotland does vote for independence, it would not formally split from the UK until, it is planned, March 2016.
The new country would not qualify for a ccTLD until some time after that — it would first have to be recognized by the United Nations, the International Standards Organization, and then ICANN.
When it did finally get a ccTLD delegated and launched, probably in 2017, its two-character string would not have much semantic relevance to most of the world’s internet users.
The ISO 3166-1 alpha-12 list, which assigns two-character codes to countries and territories, only has three strings beginning with S — SP, SQ and SW — currently unaccounted for.
.sc belongs to the Seychelles, for example, while Sao Tome and Principe has .st and Sudan has .sd.
One alternative put forward is .ab, which could be used to represent Alba, the Scots Gaelic name for Scotland.
But it’s hardly a commonly known name outside Scotland (even in the rest of the UK) and there are only 57,000 native Scots Gaelic speakers in a Scottish population of 5.3 million.
It seems pretty clear that if .scot goes up against .ab, or any other two-character string, .scot will win in the marketplace, in much the same way as .com eclipses .us today.
That would be the case even if .scot didn’t get the three-year head start that starts next week.
There’s a definite wild west flavor to today’s crop of new gTLD launches, in a week which sees no fewer than 16 strings hit general availability.
Kicking off the week, today Minds + Machines brings its first wholly-owned TLDs to market.
Following the successful launch of .london, for which M+M acts as the back-end, last week, today we see the launch of the less exciting .cooking, .country, .fishing, .horse, .rodeo, and .vodka.
Afilias’ rural-themed .organic also goes to GA today.
As does .vegas, an oddity in the geo-gTLD space as it’s a city pretty much synonymous with one vertical market, gambling. Or three vertical markets, if you include booze and prostitution.
.vegas names do not require a local presence, so I’m expecting to see gambling businesses the world over attempt to capitalize on the Vegas brand regardless of their location.
A second batch of launches is due on Wednesday September 17.
Sticking with the wild west theme, RightSide’s .republican is due to go first-come, first-served.
With a somewhat more eastern flavor, Radix Registry’s first new gTLDs — .website, .press and .host — all hit GA on the same day.
Donuts’ .loans, .life, .guide and .church all enter their standard-pricing phases, while .place and .direct enter their premium-priced Early Access Period on Wednesday too.
Wow. Somebody actually did it.
CITIC, China’s biggest conglomerate, has started redirecting its established .com domain to its new dot-brand gTLD, .citic.
Almost everyone reading this post will agree that as a memorable, attractive domain it’s a step backwards.
But CITIC does seem to be the first dot-brand to make the leap from .com to dot-brand with both feet, and it seems to have done so with little to no penalty to its Google ranking (at least as far as searches for its company name go).
A Google search for “citic” here returns limited.citic as the third result, behind Wikipedia and one of CITIC’s sister companies.
The original citic.com doesn’t appear in the top results.
The company also has ranking for group.citic, one of the five second-level names active in the .citic zone file right now.
It’s not the first dot-brand to launch a web site at its new gTLD — destination.monash and annualreport.axa spring to mind — but it does seem to be the first to throw away its .com completely.
CITIC does not appear to have activated its matching Chinese-script gTLD, .中信, in the same way, however. Only nic.中信 appears in search results for sites under that TLD.
Thanks to Jothan Frakes of NamesCon for the tip.