private TLDs

Well, this is pretty old news but here are my views on ICANN allowing organisations to buy out an entire TLD. For those not in the loop, basically, in addition to .com, .net, .org and others, ICANN will be releasing lots of new TLDs so we could have stuff like .blog, .cloud or even .google. Well, that is probably beneficial to everyone as it opens up a lot more possibilities to register short and readable domain names. We would not need to start dropping vowels like flickr simply because the alternatives are already registered.

However, what doesn't go down well is the fact that ICANN is allowing co-operations to buy out entire domains. e.g. Changi airport is trying to buy out .changiairport so no one can register a domain ending with that TLDs. In my opinion, that is a stupid move as doing so would defeat the purpose of releasing these new TLDs. Changi airport is likely to use only a handful of these TLDs like web.changiairport and intranet.changiairport and the rest of the .changiairport namespace is going to be wasted. This is similar to back in the days when IANA started giving out class A addresses so generously that we started running out of IPv4 addresses. If this goes through, in 3 years time we might be back at the same dilemma with all short and readable names either taken or privatised. I don't see a IPv6 like solution to this problem. It might be too late by then.

In reality, I see no need for changi airport to have its own TLD. It can simply register for a domain in the .airport TLD. e.g. changi.airport and all other airports can share the .airport TLD, e.g. KL.airport , bangkok.airport and so on.

Even more alarming is the fact that companies like google are trying to buy out generic TLDs like .cloud and .blog. To be honest, I could care less about .changiairport. But if I wanted to start a blog, I wont be able to get a if google privatised the address. Google can claim that they will open it for public registration similar to what they are doing for but they will most likely restrict you to their blogging platform. I wouldn't be able to run wordpress/joomla on it, or to provide my own blogging service.

In short, privatising TLDs is a bad idea, I cant see any possible benefit apart from "protecting their brand name" which is a legitimate concern albeit a minor one considering the potential abuse.