Four new generic top-level domains - the letters that appear at the end of web addresses, such as .com - have been announced. The Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (Icann) is expected to roll out the new names within weeks. They are: شبكة, the Arabic word for “web”; 游戏, the Chinese word for “game”; and the Russian words for “online” and “web site”, онлайн and сайт.

BBC News - New top-level web domains announced by Icann

New York City Seeks to Become a New Internet Address

Businesses have long jockeyed for an address on Fifth Avenue — and the city is now hoping it can create a similar phenomenon online.

New York City is gearing up to apply for a new Internet domain with a .nyc suffix, a move made possible by a recent decision by the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers, which oversees the Internet address system, to approve the creation of a large number of new so-called top-level domains.

» via The New York Times (Subscription may be required for some content)

Internet address expansion set despite ".worries."

Bidding will begin this week for words and brand names such as “.sport,” “.NYC” and “.bank” to join “.com” as online monikers.

Up to 1,000 domain name suffixes — the “.com” in an Internet address — could be added each year in the most sweeping change to the domain name system since its creation in the 1980s.

To some, the system will lead to “.cash.” To others, it will mean “.confusion.”

» via Yahoo! News

A .data Top-Level Internet Domain?

There are product catalogs, store information, event calendars, regulatory filings, inventory data, historical reference material, contact information—lots of things that can be very usefully computed from. But even if these things are somewhere on an organization’s website, there’s no standard way to find them, let alone standard structured formats for them.

My concept for the .data domain is to use it to create the “data web”—in a sense a parallel construct to the ordinary web, but oriented toward structured data intended for computational use. The notion is that alongside a website like wolfram.com, there’d be wolfram.data.

If a human went to wolfram.data, there’d be a structured summary of what data the organization behind it wanted to expose. And if a computational system went there, it’d find just what it needs to ingest the data, and begin computing with it.

» via Stephen Wolfram

Terrified of cybersquatting, businesses battle plan for more top-level domains

Now ICANN has done it—they’ve gone and made the advertising industry angry, along with an army of other trademark and intellectual property stakeholders. The Association of National Advertisers (ANA) is leading a petition drive asking the US Commerce Department to stop ICANN’s planned roll-out of potentially hundreds of new “generic” top-level domains (gTLDs; existing gTLDs include .com and .net), including the controversial .xxx domain for pornographic content.

In an interview with Ars Technica, Dan Jaffe, EVP of Government Relations for ANA, said that the Coalition for Responsible Internet Domain Oversight (CRIDO) had so far signed on 101 companies and associations in support of its petition—including the US Chamber of Commerce, Ford, General Electric, and Hewlett-Packard—which it initially sent to Commerce Secretary John Bryson on November 10. 

"And we’ve heard from other groups who have similar concerns, including the Council of Better Business Bureaus," he said. Jaffe said that ICANN’s plan would divert millions of dollars from companies, money that would be better spent creating jobs.

» via ars technica

'XXX' Marks the Spot

The exercise of figuring out one’s “porn star name” is probably more familiar to college students than to college administrators. (For the uninitiated: the standard formula is your first pet’s name, then the name of the street you grew up on.) But a new standard for the addresses of pornographic Web domains, approved in March by the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN), might prompt administrators to think of their college’s “porn star name,” and consider whether they ought to snatch it up before some opportunistic flesh-peddler tries to do so.

College marketers may also have to decide if it is worth it to move beyond their traditional “.edu” domains to more intuitive Web addresses that will soon be available due to another change to the ICANN system — a question that touches on whether Web URLs are still relevant to institutional branding.

» via Inside Higher Ed

Domain Seizures Do Not Violate Free Speech, U.S. Court Rules

A U.S. federal court has ruled that the domain seizure of sports streaming site Rojadirecta does not violate the First Amendment, and has refused to hand the domain back to its Spanish owner. The order stands in conflict with previous Supreme Court rulings and doesn’t deliver much hope to other website owners who operate under U.S. controlled domain names.

» via TorrentFreak

New '.music' web domain worries recording industry

The recording industry is singing the blues over a new online addressing rule that will allow for the creation of a “.music” domain.

The new domain name system was approved in June by the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers, the nonprofit organization that oversees the Internet addressing system.

The music industry is concerned that the new system could allow online pirates to buy new domain names that help make their websites look more legitimate — encouraging more copyright infringement of digital music.

» via Politico

U.S. Government Seizes BitTorrent Search Engine Domain and More

Following on the heels of this week’s domain seizure of a large hiphop file-sharing links forum, it’s clear today that the U.S. Government has been very busy. Without any need for COICA, ICE has just seized the domain of a BitTorrent meta-search engine along with those belonging to other music linking sites and several others which appear to be connected to physical counterfeit goods.
While complex, it’s still possible for U.S. authorities and copyright groups to point at a fully-fledged BitTorrent site with a tracker and say “that’s an infringing site.” When one looks at a site which hosts torrents but operates no tracker, the finger pointing becomes quite a bit more difficult.
When a site has no tracker, carries no torrents, lists no copyright works unless someone searches for them and responds just like Google, accusing it of infringement becomes somewhat of a minefield – unless you’re ICE Homeland Security Investigations that is.

» via TorrentFreak

U.S. Government Seizes BitTorrent Search Engine Domain and More

Following on the heels of this week’s domain seizure of a large hiphop file-sharing links forum, it’s clear today that the U.S. Government has been very busy. Without any need for COICA, ICE has just seized the domain of a BitTorrent meta-search engine along with those belonging to other music linking sites and several others which appear to be connected to physical counterfeit goods.

While complex, it’s still possible for U.S. authorities and copyright groups to point at a fully-fledged BitTorrent site with a tracker and say “that’s an infringing site.” When one looks at a site which hosts torrents but operates no tracker, the finger pointing becomes quite a bit more difficult.

When a site has no tracker, carries no torrents, lists no copyright works unless someone searches for them and responds just like Google, accusing it of infringement becomes somewhat of a minefield – unless you’re ICE Homeland Security Investigations that is.

» via TorrentFreak

Porn Sites Set to Get .XXX Domain Name Option

ICANN, the organization that oversees domain names and registrations for the Internet, plans to approve the .xxx top-level domain (TLD) for adult websites.

According to multiple reports, ICANN officials told people at a public meeting in Brussels that it intends to allow adult businesses to register .xxx domains, which have been the subject of controversy for several years. An ICANN attorney said that due diligence and contract negotiations must still be carried out; if those are successful, Internet porn could have its own distinct TLD.

The .xxx domain has been criticized by everyone from pornographers — some of whom see the TLD as a form of digital segregation — to conservative American activists, who would probably prefer a porn-free Internet altogether.

» via Mashable