In one of the biggest shake-ups the internet has yet seen, the number of domain endings is set to rocket and personalisation will be allowed. But in case you fancy an internet after your own name, you’ve got to have deep pockets.
This means that addresses such as .google; or .barclays; or .bbc, could become the norm, working alongside the more common .com, or co.uk.
The plan has just been announced by the body which oversees website domain suffixes.
There are currently a limited number of domain endings and Icann (The Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers) says that soon any word will be able to end an internet address, and, be in any language.
But Icann struck one note of caution: it’s not going to be a free-for-all. Applications will have to be made in writing to Icann and its believed that the world’s major corporations and cities will be first in line.
The new gTLDs, which stands for generic top-level domain, will number around 700 and join the existing 22 gTLDs we know today, as well as the 250 country level domain names, which are formed .uk and .de.
But Icann expects a fee of around £114,000 and companies will have to commit to an exhaustive form filling process in order to demonstrate that they have a right to a particular name. This is designed to avoid domain name hostage taking which happened when the internet first become popular.
Icann, in defence of the fees, says it will cost them a small fortune to check the application and defend themselves against legal action from disappointed applicants.
Applications start on 12 January 2012 and the form is set to be a whopper, with 50 searching questions and no multiple choice!