.eBay probably not worth it.
One of the examples the mass media has given for the potential of new TLDs is .ebay .
“Imagine eBay (NADSAQ: EBAY) being able to create cars.ebay and electronics.ebay”, is the general line of thought.
I’m imagining, and I’m not imagining much. Why not just ebay.com/cars?
In general, I don’t think trademark holders should plop down the $185,000 to get their own top level domain. Combined with preparing the application and exhibiting the ability to run the registry, it will cost companies closer to $500,000 to obtain their top level domain.
cars.ebay will just confuse internet users. They’ll type in www.cars.ebay.com instead.
If a company decides to create email addresses around their new TLD, such as email@example.com, people will actually send email to firstname.lastname@example.org instead. I see it happen now with lesser known TLDs such as .pro.
Trademark holders will also have the ability to challenge TLD registrations. .eBay seems clear cut: if someone else applies for the domain they probably won’t get it. And at $185,000 non-refundable to apply, I don’t think anyone will be so bold as to try.
Some trademark holders should consider applying. If the trademark could be claimed by more than one party or if it has multiple meanings, companies should consider locking these down. Consider .att. AT&T (NYSE: T) should consider applying for the domain because someone could register it for another use, such as a top level domain for attorneys.