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A New Blog About “New gTLDs”

There are many blogs about new gTLDs. Some are interesting, others are not. Some are about domaining in which new gTLDs are included, some are from Law Firms and rather repetitive about the necessity to protect a brand in the Trademark Clearinghouse and how URS is the best (billable) mechanism to protect the brand; some are truly about domain names and remain must-read; very few are about new gTLDs only.

I am partial to those from Law Firms which develop and offer their own gTLD products, with more often than not, many flaws in their offers. In the end, as you will doubtless find out, it is actually their ICANN Accredited Registrar that solves problems for their client for which the law firm bills at three times the price of the registrar.

I think that brand owners, involved in domain name issues, should trust their domain name service provider and reduce the number of people involved in the chain of infringement. I also like blogs that deal with personal opinions: that testimony about this new gTLD applicant who launched his TLD, that amusing expert who keeps saying that the world will collapse because of name collision (just like it happened with IPV4 and Y2k), and finally, these members from a common new gTLD project who inform me about how the project is doing. I like those live and real life experiences.

I recently noticed a new blog about new gTLDs “only”. Surprisingly it was the blog from the Famous Four Media’s team. Here is why I like to read it.

A solid project

The Famous Four Media project was created long ago and I still have printed on my notebook the list of the first TLDs they had selected for their initial investment. Of course, ICANN delays forced every applicant to adapt and to make choices, so the list FFM has applied for today is not the same as the one I have on my notebook. However, they have still managed to apply for probably the strongest portfolio of names of any applicant.

The initial organization had to adapt while ICANN delayed again and again and it is interesting to see that they have built a strong and experienced operational management team and project is now synchronized; the only kinks remaining are string contentions but the path to delegation of their entire new gTLD portfolio is straight ahead.

I will enjoy following the development of this project: the results of launches, once all TLDs are on the market, will be a great source of learning.

A team located in the same region

All information comes from the same place and in my experience, working for top brands at several Registrars, taught me one thing: it works when you can walk to your colleague next door, to ask him or her a question. When you need to solve a problem “fast” and in an efficient way, it is the only way to do it.

I will be following this blog’s posts because all its sources of information are communicated by the core team. In this case, I appreciate the volume of information sent: not too much and only what they think necessary to tell the public.

Posts are written by members of the team

It is always interesting to read how strong someone from a team believes in what she or he does; it is precisely what you will read in this blog: posts from the Chief Marketing Officer, from Account Managers, from Business Analysts, from the Premium domain name manager…

Potential applicants will be interested in reading what insiders from a project think, because it is what drives them.

One will write:

“The greatest shock for me was a few months after starting at Famous Four Media when I looked back and thought to myself, “wow, and I thought I knew this about Internet stuff”. I can now safely say that I know a lot, I can also say that I know how little that is compared to what’s left to learn”.

Another will say:

“j’ai le vertige d’imaginer des noms tant divers que variés tel que astronomie.science, biologie.science, physique.science, chimie.science ou bien plus précis lyceefrancoisrabelaisastronomie.science multiplié par tous les sujets, tous les collèges, tous les lycées, et toutes les institutions de France et de Navarre, ça va faire énormément de noms de domaines et tellement de compétition à nationalgeographic.fr”.

And finally:

“Lo primero que apareció en mi mente fue la página manu.WEBCAM para así no tener preocupada a mi madre con la típica pregunta de qué has comido, te abrigas bien, etc. De esta forma le enseñaría al mundo lo que hago, como una nueva red social.”

You will have noticed, the posts are in many different languages, something I am sensitive to. This team is truly International: so posting blog pieces in native tongue is logical, as its members come from various countries and authentic, it is clear that there has been no sanitizing or censoring of these blogs by the marketing department. Evidently this team trusts in each other.

These sources of information are interesting when they are authentic: there are many blogs on which posts are all about internal promotion. I do agree: it is necessary for dealers to do this; but a true story with no price tag on it, is always 100 times more interesting.

By Jean Guillon, New gTLDs "only".

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Great post Chris McElroy  –  Apr 30, 2014 7:11 PM

Going to visit the site to check it out. Just a comment about the hype around new gTLDs.

The posts are already getting out there, like “New City-Based TLDs to be a Boon for Real Estate Agents” etc. insinuating that these TLDs will help people rank better in Google for searches like real estate nyc or atl or whatever.

.Asia and .Eu are already geo-targeted TLDs and Google says it treats them no different than .com, org, or net.

Unless Google makes a significant change, the new city-based TLDs will not help anyone rank better in local search results.

So I agree with you about some of the hype to help sell domain names.

Geo TLDs and ranking. Jean Guillon  –  May 1, 2014 7:22 AM

I once wrote that regarding TLDs and ranking but I noticed it worked with TLDs which had a meaning. In this case: .MUSEUM

New gTLDs are far too new and there are far too few on the market to notice changes yet.
As a user, I buy a domain name if it means something: .wine would be a good one for wine related content but I am not so sure about .NYC. I would be much more confident in a .MIAMI or a .LONDON because they are keywords with a very strong meaning.

I also read what Matt Cutts said once and that was a long ago. If geo TLDs are not better considered by Google it is possible that this has changed slightly already and if it has not it probably will. I already see Google’s competitors using this as a serious communication advantage to promote their search engine.

Google is kind of the problem Steven Waechter  –  May 3, 2014 4:24 PM

That people only care how google handles thing is part of the problem IMHO. Who made them so authoritative? Well, I guess we did. And that is part of the problem.

There are other Search Engines Jean Guillon  –  May 3, 2014 4:57 PM

...as you say, we chose Google.

We chose google Steven Waechter  –  May 5, 2014 4:19 PM

We chose Google, mostly because of the minimalist nature of google. Before google Yahoo owned search, I used to get stats years ago and 70% of the traffic was from Yahoo. Not anymore. Along came google and they minimized the ads. Now, sure, they have ads, but they are mostly so much less intrusive than some other search sites. Yahoo comes to mind, with all the blinking and videos playing. It's a great strategy google used and it worked well for them. It's not that they are perfect, far from it. But they are often so much less annoying. If we got 10s of thousands of new and authoritative gTLDs, this will make search so much more important, and add to how authoritative google is. Because with so many no one will be able to remember any of them.

You're right Steven Chris McElroy  –  May 3, 2014 4:58 PM

We made them authoritative, and they are a reality for now. Doesn't mean they always will be. There are already so many ways to get good traffic other than Google. They are struggling with social media. The heads of Google Plus keep quitting. They now say it will be something else and won't be trying to compete with faceBook, etc. But it seems they don't know what to do and that they are losing some of the control they had. We'll have to wait and see. Google has a way of rebounding and surviving despite challenges.

Google Plus? Jean Guillon  –  May 3, 2014 5:11 PM

Google Plus offers an entry point to members of Google only... Google pages do not offer to use a domain name, as well as their communities. I'd say the problem is here : it is the domain name. I'd love to be able to take a reader to a communitiey on google because the tool is very good but there is no way to connect a domain name to them...

Google Plus is essentially dead Steven Waechter  –  May 3, 2014 5:59 PM

Google Plus failed. I can mark the day. It was the instant Google created a default Google Plus page for *everything*. Their index is now chock full of business listings that the business knows nothing about, with incorrect phone numbers, domain names, addresses, you name it. It's nowhere as visible as on a google android phone, where you look up a business, push the "call" button and you get something completely different. A wrong number. I had one corrected once because some poor person was receiving numerous calls. It's bad, really bad. It's complete desperation that google did that.

Too early to say Jean Guillon  –  May 5, 2014 9:12 AM

Let's hope new options come with new gTLDs. G+ needs more open doors to drive traffic to it.

Back around 2001 Chris McElroy  –  May 3, 2014 4:55 PM

In the mailing lists for the General Assembly, the DNSO working groups and other Internet Governance Mailing Lists, Others and I urged ICANN to take the yellow pages approach to new TLDs. A TLD for every heading you'd find in the phone book. Then the companies that managed those TLDs could have set up search.plumber, search.cpa, search.atty, search.wine, etc. etc. Commercials on TV could have been run to educate people on how to find exactly what they are looking for by going to search.whatever you want. We were told by ICANN Fanboys and BoD members that would be too complicated for users. At the time, Vint Cerf was the head of ICANN. Now he works at Google. The yellow pages concept for new TLDs would have been bad for Google, Bing, Yahoo, etc. I think that was the reason they didn't do it, because the excuse about it being too complicated was simply ridiculous.

... Jean Guillon  –  May 3, 2014 5:02 PM

Anybody is free to launch a search.wine, I don't see what you write above as a problem. Google is good because the algorithm is good. A search.domains offering to search selecting TLDs is an idea they yet have not had. Who knows, maybe it is now what end users need for a change.

It's bad right now Steven Waechter  –  May 3, 2014 5:26 PM

It's bad right now, with the pitiful amount of TLDs we have. The .com is 99% authoritative, all those other TLDs have nearly no authority by comparison. No one thinks of any of the other TLDs at all, or nearly so. Of course the whole problem is the .COM is about gone now. All the short, advertisable domain names are gone, even though only a fraction seem to be in actual use. Getting 10,000 more TLDs would be a snoozer. They are mostly ignored. We're talking business use here. Mentioning a domain name on the radio without having the announcer spell it, twice.

Again, it is far too early to say Jean Guillon  –  May 5, 2014 9:17 AM

The benefit of launching so many new gTLDs at the same time = more education because Registrars have already started spamming their clients and more people talk about them. I like use that old speech about coming generations...they'll grow up with new gTLDs. New domain names are still ignored, that is true but - as you write it - there are no .com left and new gTLDs are here to offer new opportunities.

Yeah Chris McElroy  –  May 1, 2014 7:32 AM

That’s why they call it speculation. :)

$10 a year to speculate Jean Guillon  –  May 1, 2014 7:42 AM

I take it.

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