Next Innovation on the Internet: no more slashes?

Here at the ICANN 51 conference (Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers) in Los Angeles this week, sitting in on lots of policy details being examined and re-examined, so as it goes with a multi-stakeholder model of governance, and there’s sidebar presentations of technical layers too.

By the way, did you know there’s now over 418 new gTLDs up and running already? 418gtlds

A question I heard during one of the proceedings sparked my thinking about new possibilities ushered in with the new gTLD program (generic Top-Leel Domains): “What is truly the innovation with new gTLDs?” In other words, “What can the Internet do with new gTLDs that it can’t do now?”

Imagine a new possibility of no more slashes. Granted, my idea here is raw, and perhaps this will be built-upon and spur on newly developed ideas, especially with 50% of Interbrand’s Top 100 Global Brands applied for new gTLDs:

Instead of websites with URLs like,

  • brand.com
  • brand.com/about
  • brand.com/locations
  • brand.com/products

The new web addresses with new gTLDs of brands could be:

  • about.brand
  • locations.brand
  • products.brand
  • shop.brand

What do you think? Shorter and more meaningful URLs as stand-alone domain names. Instead of URLs with keywords after the slash, the slash could disappear, and the keywords in front of the dots can navigate all of the entry points to a corporate/organization’s web presence! Yes, this would mean web servers and search engines have to be recalibrated to this new kind of web presence. And, that’s what innovation is all about, changes that make it even easier to connect with a brand.

I, for one, would like to see more chatter about new gTLDs in the open, on the open Internet, and not only at offline in-person industry conferences. And, yes, I know that for legal concerns and trademarks and brands having a ton more equity at stake (and at risk) for having open conversations, it’s not quite a free and open conversation for kicking around new ideas, yet, but let’s get the ball rolling.

This post is part of a blog series tagged gTLD. Also see How to get the new gTLD domain names you want + When will more new gTLD websites go live? + 6 ways to choose a meaningful domain name with a new gTLD

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4 Responses

  1. @ARIservices says:

    https://twitter.com/ARIservices/status/522174122575409152 @ARIservices: @djchuang Great article, thanks for sharing. We agree, the forward slash will become a relic of the past. New TLDs will promote microsites

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