Every country registers nTLDs according to its own taste – whether that’s .PARIS in France, .TIENDA in Spain, or .CLUB in Canada. Many nations take part in global trends; so their TLD habits might be similar. Yet some countries are very inward looking, showing peculiar affection for TLDs the rest of the planet ignores. Alright, then. Which nations are weirdest?
We can answer that question using this definition of country-TLD bias or “Skew”:
For example, the Skew for .QUEBEC / Canada is 883, indicating that a person in Canada is 883 times as likely to register .QUEBEC (if registering an nTLD domain) than a person outside Canada. Meanwhile, the Skew inside Canada for .PRESS or .TECH or .CLICK or .LOL is approximately equal to 1. That means Canada behaves exactly like the rest of the world where these other suffixes are concerned.
In order to decide how peculiar Canada is overall, we’ll be looking at the Skew values for each country’s top 100 nTLDs:
|Country||Skew > 2||Skew > 4||Skew > 8||Skew > 16||Skew > 50|
So who wins? Which countries turned their back on the rest of the world in order to register their own local nTLD favorites? That depends.
If we focus on extreme cases of Skew > 16, then Germany is the most idiosyncratic country, followed by the Cayman Islands, France, Austria, Spain, Greece, and Italy. Why? Partly because of local GEOs. Germany has several: .BERLIN, .HAMBURG, .BAYERN, etc. So do France and Austria. Yet the same applies to Japan, Belgium, and South Africa – none of which shows the same extremes in Skew. Another factor is keyword language. German nTLDs like .JETZT, .SCHULE, and .GMBH tend to pry German-speaking nations loose from the global norm. As for the Caymans, well, that’s another story altogether.
If we focus on all cases of Skew > 2, then the effect of local GEOs is mitigated. And we begin to see nations whose weirdness is manifest in other ways. Now Canada appears to be the most bizarre nation of all. Germany is still #2; but the next results are equally surprising: Mexico, Australia, Switzerland, Norway, Israel?
Turn this ranking on its head, and we can see which nations behave “normally”. These either set global trends or follow them. Domains with whois proxy ought to be a fairly random sampling of nationalities, yet this group ranks #8 out of 50 for having the least Skew. Oddly enough, not the USA or China that most closely mirrors the global norm. Rather, it’s forgotten nations like Armenia, Cambodia, Vietnam, and Pakistan. Lack of access to local GEOs or to nTLDs in the local language is part of the story. Yet there’s more. Perhaps domainers in the developing world are surrounded by so many foreign influences (and economic opportunities) that they emulate planet earth in its entirety.
Raw domain registration totals were obtained from nTLDStats.