Since last we reported on new strings added to the root by ICANN, two TLDs were added that seem like a good match for Google but ultimately will be managed by Amazon, providing some possible evidence of behind-the-scenes dealings, two new TLDs were added for the Abu Dhabi government, a surprisingly controversial application finally resulted in a delegation and a new generic Chinese-language TLD has also been added.
.you and .talk — March 25
The .you and .talk extensions are both TLDs with direct relationships to Google properties: .you with YouTube and .talk with Google Talk. It comes as no surprise, then, that one of the two applications ICANN received for each of these two TLDs came from Google.
What is surprising, though, is that Google withdrew its applications for each of these TLDs in July 2014, leaving Amazon as the only remaining applicant on these two TLDs. Interestingly, at the same time, Amazon withdrew its applications for .dev and .drive, leaving Google the only applicant for those two. It would appear, then, that some kind of private arrangement was met regarding these four TLDs. Now, .you and .talk have been delegated and we can expect to see these released by Amazon.
.abudhabi and ابوظبي. — April 6
The extension .abudhabi and its Arabic-character version ابوظبي. (.xn--mgbca7dzdo in punycode) are both two new geoTLDs proposed by the Abu Dhabi government. The Abu Dhabi government will actually maintain a significant degree of control over the two TLDs: the application stipulates that registration will be restricted to agencies registered with the Abu Dhabi government.
The intention is apparently to “supplement existing means of communication” for Abu Dhabi government entities. So while these are indeed geoTLDs, the Abu Dhabi government intends to use them in a more official capacity than the typical geoTLD.
.baby — April 8
The path from application to delegation for .baby was surprisingly rocky. This TLD was one of the TLDs, along with .gay, that the Saudi Arabian government objected to for potentially promoting pornographic content. The European Commission also raised concerns about the potential use of .baby for purposes that “could possibly raise issues of compatibility with the existing legislations (the acquis) and/or with policy positions and objectives of the European Union.” Nonetheless, .baby received six applications, including one from Google, but ultimately it was awarded to Johnson & Johnson as a lifestyle TLD.
.网站 — April 17
The puny code version of .网站 (pronounced /wangzhan/) is .xn--5tzm5g and it means “website.” As a new addition the stable of Chinese-language generic TLDs, .网站 hopes to contend with TLDs such as .在线 (“online”) and .中国 (“China”) to be the go-to generic TLD for the Chinese language community. They may have a late start on these two competitors but, as we’ve noted before, the domain name market in China is only just beginning to open up and already accounts for a significant portion of domains registered.
You can keep track of future developments on this page from ICANN.
Remember: these are new TLDs on the cutting edge of having been added by ICANN. As such, any discussion of one of these TLDs should not be interpreted as meaning any of these extensions will be imminently available on Gandi (though we, of course, try to offer all the extensions we possibly can).