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DomainsBot : Eight domain name predictions from 2001



In its previous incarnation, DomainsBot was a domain investment resource, providing tutorials and daily droplists.

While the current version seems to focus on the same issues, it’s not related to DomainsBot as it was prior to 2004.

We’ve already presented a newsletter from 2000 about how to profit from domain name investments; today’s resource is titled “Eight domain name predictions for 2001.

The article was added to the DomainsBot newsletter on 2/25/2001 by Lee Hodgson, who back in the day owned the domain DomainGuideBook.Com.

Now that the new year is upon us, let’s look ahead and make a few predictions about how the domain landscape might change in the next 12 months.

1) New global domain names will fail to impact dot com

It took years for ICANN to do anything about adding to the pool of global domain name suffixes, dot com, dot net, and dot org, and when they did, they came up with a pretty lame selection i.e. dot biz, dot name, dot info, dot museum, dot aero, dot pro, dot coop. The only one in this crop likely to affect small businesses is dot biz and purchasing a really good dot com name in the resale market is probably a wiser choice.

2) Dot TV will be the surprise success story

Many companies are attempting to fill the void left by ICANN, and are launching new global domains that were originally meant to serve specific countries. Some examples of this phenomena are dot TV (Tuvalu), dot LA (Lao), dot MU (Mauritius), dot NU (Niue), dot CC (Cocos Islands), and dot WS (Western Samoa). It’s unlikely that all of these domains will be successful in the marketplace, so what will be the key to deciding their fate? In a word, branding. The registrars responsible for promoting these names must plant them in the minds of consumers worldwide and make people feel comfortable about clicking URLs using these new suffixes.

A huge marketing budget always helps, but a critical ingredient is the name itself. If a web surfer saw an advert for a dot WS site, would they know that the initials ‘WS’ stood for ‘Web Site’? Probably not. But if the same web surfer saw an advert for a dot TV site, there would already be a familiarity with the domain suffix, even if the user had never been exposed to dot TV’s promotional campaigns. This ‘in-built’ familiarity of the dot TV name will be invaluable weapon in the branding wars that will rage all year. Given that dot TV has a powerful set of financial backers (including Verisign Inc. / Network Solutions), I expect dot TV to be the clear winner amongst the new domain names, and even challenge the superiority of dot com in many niche markets.

3) Nothing comes close to replacing domain names

Although other technologies are emerging, notably voice-driven keyword based technologies on mobile devices, nothing will come close to replacing the mighty URL. Like it or loathe it, the domain name is here to stay for quite a while.

4) Domain disputes will escalate

With the increasing number of domain name and related trademark registrations, the number of domain disputes will escalate to record levels in 2001. At least it will keep the lawyers happy.

5) Multi lingual domains will be mired in conflict

It sounds easy enough – allow people to register domain names using their native languages. But what sounds easy in principle turns out to be a big can of international worms. For instance, in Thailand, there are already two competing systems that allow people to register domain names in the Thai language. Some names are registered in both systems, but by different organizations. Trying to resolve these types of namespace conflicts will always be a long and difficult process.

There will also be other problems dogging non-ASCII domains, such as how people will type them into their browsers, and how DNS systems worldwide can resolve them. It will be a while before prudent businesses even consider using non-ASCII domain names for their web sites.

6) Importance of domain names will grow

As more companies and individuals go online, and learn about the importance of having their own domain name/s, the number of domain registrations will continue to soar worldwide.

7) Multiple domain names will become fashionable

Businesses of all sizes will begin to realize the value of investing in multiple domain names, even if they only own one web site. It’s now becoming very cheap to register a domain name and point it at an existing web site or even a page within that web site. Extra domain names will be used as ‘traffic catchers’, or just provide a convenient way for customers to access long URLs.

8) Secondary domain market will go mainstream

The buying and selling of domain names has up till recently been inextricably linked with ‘cybersquatting’, the practice of registering domain names that other people have intellectual
rights (notably trademark rights) to. With the purchase of the two major domain name trading sites: GreatDomains by Verisign Inc. (formerly Network Solutions), and AfterNIC by Register.com, buying domain names rather than registering new ones will become a much more mainstream and safe method of domain acquiral in 2001.

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One Response to “DomainsBot : Eight domain name predictions from 2001”
  1. Dn Ebook says:

    One day .tv ……… on day ………..ummmm

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