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ICANN take your money… TLD specials… $185K while they last…

The hierarchical domain name system, organized...

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Wow! What a bargain. ICANN (that’s the Internet Association for Assigned Names and Numbers, for the uninitiated) offers to sell Top Level Domain names (aka TLD‘s) for a mere $185,000.00. Buy two, they’re cheap.

Heralding  “the most significant change to the Internet, really, since it was created,”  Peter Dengate Thrush, chairman of ICANN’s board of directors, in his understated style, introduced the new naming convention to the world. No more dot-com, dot-net nonsense, nosiree. The new convention allows companies to create a TLD in just about any format they can imagine.

“Once this is set up,”  Thrush says, “the theory is, or the hope is, this is going to lead to innovation in ways we can’t imagine.” Thrush goes on to  note that the fee is relatively modest. “It’s not the price of a domain name. This is to create a registry that … can sell and manage millions and even hundreds of millions of domain names. You’re talking a reasonably serious business investment.”


Of course, others may take a more jaded view. Esther Dyson, internet pioneer and former founding chair of ICANN’s board, fails to see the value in the new naming system. “Nobody’s creating new value here,” Dyson says, “They’re just selling words … The trademark system is good enough.” The high price of the naming system, given that the existing dot-com system seems to work just fine, seems rather exorbitant.

Dyson goes on to say  “I think it’s kind of a useless market and if I had $185,000, I’d spend it on something else.” She says this is an expensive solution for the wrong problem.

Dengate-Thrush, the ICANN board’s current chairman, insists what’s best for consumers is choice. To demonstrate his concern for consumers, Thrush and ICANN have established a tight and inflexible schedule for application submission.

It doesn’t hurt that this “choice” will potentially create a huge income stream.

Prey for fear, indeed!

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