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Historic Expansion of Internet Domain Names Include “.clothing”

In what some are calling a historic change for online commerce, a slew of new Internet domain names is soon to be available for purchase, including “.clothing.”

James Cole, spokesman for the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers, said, “If you think about the history of the Internet and the history of domains, this is pretty massive. It could potentially affect every Internet user.”

The enlargement of the Domain Name System (DNS), the largest such expansion since the Internet’s debut in 1994, is the first of its kind since 2004. As it currently stands, the “.com” category has been the overwhelmingly dominant one, accounting for approximately 78 percent of 143 million registered domain names.

Mike McLaughlin, vice president and general manager of domains at GoDaddy, commented on the potential impact on online business. He said, “Domain names are real estate of the Internet, and new land has just been opened up. So getting to stake your claim early is obviously better. He added that the domain name expansion will “fundamentally change how people navigate the Internet, with names that are much more meaningful and targeted.”

There is already significant buzz in the retail industry about the potential ramifications for the new “.clothing” domain name, which some experts anticipate could alter the nature of e-commerce marketing. Some larger retailers have already applied for their own customized domain names; for example, Nike is attempting to purchase “.nike” and Cartier is pursuing “.cartier.”

New web addresses within the additional domains can be purchased through registrars like GoDaddy, and Network Solutions. Most of these will sell in the $10 to $40 range, with the exception of more boutique domains like “.luxury” which could cost well over $1,000 a name.