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Internet Real Estate Prepares to Boom

June 24, 2008; 03:22 AM

Dallas, Texas  ( — Even though the real estate market is in a downward spiral, a new report by the BBC News sheds light on what may be the most anticipated Internet real estate revolution in decades.

The Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (Icann) will vote on Thursday to determine whether stringent rules set forth on the the top level of domain names such as .com and .uk can be eased up to allow companies and individuals to create their own international brand. The elusive domain .xxx could also be implemented depending on the outcome of the vote.

The current top level domains are divided up according to country “such as .uk (UK) or .it (Italy), as well as to commerce, .com, and to institutional organi[z]ations, such as .net, or .org.” Although there is a mind-boggling variation of domain names in existence, there is a limit to every restriction.

The Icann acts as a sort of grade school hall monitor by managing the content on the net as well as monitoring the system of domain names. The plan to expanding the net has been in the works for the past three years. The Internet could also see diversity in language as the new domains could include international names which could be written in Arabic and Asian language scripts.

In an interview with the BBC News, Dr Paul Twomey, chief executive of Icann, explained the gravity of the proposed reform. “The impact of this will be different in different parts of the world. But it will allow groups, communities and business to express their identities online,” Twomey states. “Like the United States in the 19th Century, we are in the process of opening up new real estate, new land, and people will go out and claim parts of that land and use it for various reasons they have. It’s a massive increase in the geography of the real estate of the internet.”

With change comes the inevitable conflict and arbitration disputes are already being anticipated–though a plan is already in the works. By the end of 2008, thousands of shiny new domain names will have been registered. Icann stated that there will be an independent mediation process for those with a justified reason for objection. Although specifics have not been released, Dr. Twomey said that Icann is still deciding on the cost of the application fee for domain registration. The fee is projected to cost several thousand dollars at the least.

“We are doing this on a cost recovery basis. We’ve already spent $10m on this,” Twomey said.

Companies and individuals will be the ability to register domains based on their name using any string letters “as long as they can show a “business plan and technical capacity”. Though it will remain relatively easy to secure a domain, some names could become involved in a bidding war. Those situations, says Twomey, will be taken to auction and the highest bidder will accept the name.

By: 1VIZABILITY/ Web Design  - A Dallas based web design a& SEO Company. They offer domain registration, web design, professional organic search engine optimization / web site solutions for small business firms in Dallas.




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