Comment: Andrew Hinton (Jan 18, 2002)
Don't sweat the lack of "actual user testing." I just paid a month's lunch money for Jakob's new Intranet report, and when I received it noticed it doesn't actually test any users either :-)
Comment: Paul Nattress (Jan 18, 2002)
1. I agree that the new top-level domains are, quite frankly, naff.
2. I think it's easier for an average user* to type in www.usability.com, www.usability.org, www.usability.info etc than to type www.usabilityinfo.com, www.usabilityorganisation.com etc.
* Has anyone ever actually met an average user before?
Comment: Andrew (Jan 18, 2002)
So maybe we should all just use Google to get to everything and do away with the URL field.
Comment: Avi Rappoport (Jan 18, 2002)
Andrew, you're not the only one who's considered this option!
Dan Gillmor just did a column on how search engines have filled the gap between name and URL, so the whole TLD thing is much less important. It's at:
I've always been skeptical of additional TLDs, they might have made sense if they'd been released before the Big Boom. But now ".com" is so strongly identified with web sites that it's the default, so anyone typing a URL has to overcome the intertia to type anything else, such as .org, .ca, .uk, whatever.
On the third hand, many people never type a URL into the location box at all, they type them into the query field in search engines. Actually, that gets us back to Andrew's point.
Comment: the head lemur (Jan 20, 2002)
the new TLD's explained.....
sites for used car salesmen and other offers that are too good to be true..
>>click here for your 100 year lightbulbs<<
sites for infomercials and banner ad networks.
thank you for visiting, your name is now on over 10,000 maillists!!
your free offers will be arriving shortly
sites for identity thieves.
the source of new and old identities.
become someone else
prostitution and outcall services on the web
your source for volcanic eruptions!!
your home for that really clean feeling!
60 minutes or less!!!
(please kids, do not go there. You remember happened in Risky Business)
sites to save the dead arts and sciences.
the home for propriatary tags and effects that only work in certain browsers!
sites for airplanes...
top 100 reasons your 1000 dollar laptop will crash our 50 million dollar plane
sites for convicted felons.
guides to federal prisons... Now with menus!!
bad boys and what they do alone
Comment: Lou (Jan 20, 2002)
Yikes, we've been lemured!
Comment: Jerry Kindall (Jan 20, 2002)
I've thought for a while that the domains they actually chose are dumb, dumb, dumb. There were much better options out there. For instance, we should have an .inc and .corp for corporations which commonly use "Inc." or "Corporation" in their name, and similar ones for other countries (e.g. .ltd, .gmbh, .ag, etc.). Require all corporations to use these domains for their corporate sites and price 'em at $500 a year.
And then we should have .xxx. Require all porn sites to use this TLD. Browser developers then put in a button that blocks any domain name ending in .xxx. In fact, browser developers require a credit card number (not necessarily charged anything) in onder to unlock access to .xxx sites. End of porn filtering problem.
Why ".info" and ".museum" was chosen and not either of these eminently more useful TLDs is mystifying to me.
Comment: L. Lowe (Jan 21, 2002)
The launch of.info and .biz domain names was heralded as a huge success. Why have they done so well?
Basically because those of us who do business online scrambled to register the .info and .biz names that corresponded with our .com name. Otherwise others will.
I, like others, have been burned in the past with identity fraudsters opening websites offering similar services under a .net or .org domain that is the same as my .com. I have found that the only way to overcome this is to own ALL the domain TLD's relating to your company. Domain registration companies are very wise to this fact.
So what's my point? Bascially that .info and .biz domains were released for one purpose only. Profit. Hence the .biz lottery style of pre-registeration. Which I am sure they made a pretty penny from.
Comment: Michael Fry (Jan 21, 2002)
Jerry Kindall wrote (above):
"And then we should have .xxx. Require all porn sites to use this TLD...End of porn filtering problem.
Seems to me we'd still have to define
"pornography" and then figure out how to guarantee that anything "pornographic" carries the .xxx TLD.
In short, I don't see how this solves the "problem."
Comment: Tom Dana (Jan 21, 2002)
How about the company new.net
they offer .xxx as well as many others
They are not ICANN approved.......yet
Comment: Dimitris Anthoulakis (Jan 23, 2002)
I agree with the numbers. You just forgot to calculate how much the domain registration companies will earn by all these useless new top level domains ...
Comment: Lou (Jan 25, 2002)
I'm surprised by the cynicism in many of these responses. I really hadn't considered this as a money-making scam. And though I'm sure that a lot of money is being scammed by the registrars here, do people really think that ICANN itself is in cahoots?
I'd just assumed that they, like so many bureacracies, were benignly incompetent when it came to thinking through these issues in terms of usability and findability.
Comment: Jerry Kindall (Jan 25, 2002)
It's easy to define porn sites. They charge money and let you see naked people, in some cases having sex.
Comment: Nico Macdonald (Jan 30, 2002)
I still think the Internet Keywords concept pioneered by Real Names (http://www.realnames.com/) has a lot of mileage. It doesn't eliminate ambiguity but it is a lot closer to language than the domain name system, which is still a lot better than the IP address system. (I have no affiliation with Real Names, though I do know the founders.) More generally there is still a lot of work to do on non-English language and non-Roman character based resource location.
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