Google and Amazon.com backpedal on closed top level domain names
Google to make one more domain open, Amazon relents on 25.
Google and Amazon.com have changed their minds about operating some of their applied-for generic top level domain names as “closed” domain names.
For many domains, the companies had planned to not offer second level domain name registrations, such as myname.blog, to the public. Instead, they planned to only register such domains within the company. Amazon wanted to keep all of its domain names restricted while Google has a mixed bag of registration policies.
Facing pressure, Google had already changed its mind on some applications. For example, in May it changed .app from a closed TLD to an open one.
But in the wake of “advice” from ICANN’s Governmental Advisory Committee, both Google and Amazon have retreated on more domain names.
Google plans to change one application, .blog, to an open domain.
Amazon’s move is much bigger. It has retreated on 25 domain names and now plans to offer registrations for .cloud, .game, .app, .search, and many others to the public.
It hasn’t (yet) changed its mind on other generics, such as .coupon and .smile.
Of course, there’s a pretty sizable loophole that would allow these companies to make their domains technically open to registration while limiting the number of actual third party registrations: pricing. The applicant guidebook does not prevent Amazon from charging $1 million a year for a domain registration, effectively blocking third parties from registering domains.