Last week there was a lot of buzz generated by the ICANN announcement that they would open up the web to allow for an "unlimited number" of new Top-Level-Domains (aka TLDs such as .com or .org or .info, for example) to be created. The initial information from Wall Street Journal was that these could cost anywhere from $100,000 to $500,000, although another report directly from ICANN states that they would be free, and require the submission of an application for evaluation.
Barry actually wrote a post on his personal blog about the new domain extensions, and specifically called out to the SEM community that it might be worth pooling funds to buy the (.seo) and (.sem) TLDs before spammers or domain speculators got a hold of them. Although the cost isn't there yet, these domains will eventually fetch a decent amount of money on the open market, or will they? In either case, I sure would love to own chrisboggs.seo...
Three different conversations are going on within search-related forums and discussion boards, and all are focused mostly on how both search engines and users would react to an influx of additional TLDs. The Sphinn thread leads to the question of whether a TLD implies more authority or trust related to a particular subject. As Kim Krause Berg points out:
Perception is everything. Just because a site ends with .seo doesn't automatically equate to credibility or expertise.This is certainly an interesting slant to the topic. If someone saw a site that was .insurance, would they possibly trust it more than an insurancebrand.com site?
WebmasterWorld Forums member Simsi asks:
How do you think Google will approach this? Especially considering they seem to have move a lot more localized with SERPS.This is also an interesting perspective...will French words forming TLDs do better in France? Doubtful unless other factors are included, but certainly an interesting question.
Lastly, the conversation at High Rankings Forums forecasts havoc brought on by this potential proliferation of TLDs. A UK member states that:
Word on the street here is that certain domain names are going to go for €600,000 (yes, that is not a mistake). There is such terror over cyber squatters that some companies are prepared to pay this. Is it me, or is this just a bit of cyber insanity to entertain me because the summer months are so slow and boring?
These are all great takes on this subject...go share your thoughts and please save the .seos for me!