Go ahead – type will.i.am into your browser bar. Ever the master of personal branding, William Adams (a.k.a. will.i.am) has cleverly registered the subdomain “will” in the domain name “i” which is registered to i.am.symbolic, LLC within the Armenian country code top-level domain .am.
As we’ve noted before, country code TLDs have been used in all sorts of clever domain names, from bit.ly (Libya’s country code) to Universal Pictures’ despicable.me (Montenegro’s country code). WordPress founder Matt Mullenweg took advantage of Trinidad & Tabago’s ccTLD when he registeredma.tt.
Expect to see more of these clever, easy-to-“direct-navigate” domain names starting in the late summer to early fall of this year. No, we’re not predicting an explosion of new countries in Eastern Europe or island nations in the Caribbean – but we are awaiting the launch of ICANN’s new gTLD program through which companies have applied for and will be, in many cases, granted generic and brand top level domains. These new top level domains will offer practically infinite opportunities for masters of branding – personal or otherwise – to create clever domain names. “
The introduction of more top-level domains could change the way we navigate the Internet if enough companies and individuals catch on to intuitive domain registration like janedoe.ninja or johnsmith.dad,” says FairWinds Co-Founder Josh Bourne. “It may be so much easier to remember these addresses that choppier, less intuitive addresses — like those with many backslashes and subdomains — will fall into relative disuse.”
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