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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.

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  1. M.G. says

    It is easy to switch to open registration, when nobody is going to limit their minimum sales price. Google and Apple can say, yes it is open for registration and annual fee is $100MM. Open for anyone. Yup. Legally open, in real life, nobody is going to buy any name, so it will be closed.

  2. CutieRascal says

    I think the whole idea of ICANN catering for specific companies is bad idea. I suspect profit is what driving many of the new tlds, not just a need for a larger namespace. I think many of these new tlds introduce alot of ambiguity into the naming convention. If we are gonna start using 2nd level names available as top level names and vice versa then we should move towards a flat namespace as opposed to a hierarchical one….but then again it wold be harder to make money…..

  3. blogger says

    Compare this:
    “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.”
    and
    “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.”
    Is .app shared between Google and Amazon? I don’t think so.

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