Domain industry pros should read these two articles.
I read a couple of interesting domain name related stories over the past few days that should be interesting to DNW readers. They give perspectives on domain names from people outside the domain name industry.
The first is a story from social media stream company Stream titled Why Stream Stopped Using .IO Domain Names for Production Traffic.
People in the domain industry often talk about the confusion of using alternatives to dominant top level domain names like .com. But Stream has another reason to choose a mainstream TLD: uptime.
The company uses the domain name GetStream.io for its website and also used a .io domain for its API. But a failure by the .io registry on September 20th made it rethink this.
Verisign talks a lot about its uptime record. Here’s a company recognizing that.
After the registry technical issues, Stream decided to move its production domain name to a .com and will add a .org as a backup.
Some of these catchy country code domain extensions are being snapped up by new companies, but I hope they understand what they are getting. .AI is a country code for a country of 15,000 people. The registry is run by one guy. He might be great at what he does, but he also represents a single point of failure.
Afilias has taken over the .io domain name so its backend should be better going forward (although this latest issue seems to have been when the domain was under its control). Afilias manages the registry backend for .org.
I haven’t heard of any downtime issues with new top level domain names. This might be because some are not used very much. As Stream pointed out in its post, if .com had an issue everyone would be talking about it and it would be fixed quickly.
The second article is about the .bank top level domain name. American Banker author Mary Wisniewski wrote The internet name many banks are afraid to use. It’s friendlier to .bank than the headline suggests.
It points out that many banks just haven’t gotten around to transitioning to .bank. They have lots of other IT projects to handle.
But it also talks about consumer confusion. Consider when Farmers & Merchants State Bank switched its domain name to FM.bank.
Here’s something I didn’t think about: consumers can be confused when a new domain is at the end of a sentence. They think the last dot is part of the domain:
The $1 billion-asset bank also noted some assumed when a sentence ended “.bank.” in its promotional materials, the last period was part of the web address, instead of perfect punctuation.
“We had to rework the sentence,” said J. Marty Filogamo, Farmers & Merchants State Bank senior vice president and marketing manager, chuckling.
Both of these articles highlight experiences people outside the domain industry have had with domain names.