When Industry Giants Propose New TLDs
Date: Thursday March 11 2004, @03:51PM
Topic: gTLDs hoping to enter the legacy root

Jules Vo-Dinh writes "Some of the biggest names in the mobile communications industry (Microsoft, Nokia, Vodafone, HP, Orange, Sun...) are banding together to create a new gTLDs for Web pages built specifically for access by mobile devices..."
AF writes "It might be a glance at where some of the new domain names may be headed. In a recent press release, Alan Harper says: 'The aim of the initiative is to accelerate the rollout of Internet products and services specifically designed for mobile devices as well as to ensure far greater operating simplicity for mobile subscribers across the globe. This venture should build on the considerable trust that exists in the mobile community between subscribers and operators.'"

"What is this initiative you ask? A new wireless protocol? A new wireless association? Not exactly! Alan Harper is the group strategy director at Vodafone, one the world's largest mobile telecom operators and he is talking about a recent bid to ICANN for a new unspecified mobile top-level domain. That's right a "mobile TLD" or mTLD. Nine software, telecom, and mobile handset heavyweights (3, GSM Association, HP, Microsoft, Nokia, Orange, Samsung, Sun, and Vodafone) have signed a memorandum of understanding to jointly set up a new Internet names registry company to issue domain names for wireless devices, in an attempt to boost mobile services..."

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Is this really needed?
by dtobias (dan@tobias.name) on Friday March 12 2004, @07:08AM (#13175)
User #2967 Info | http://domains.dan.info/
I don't really see the point in having separate TLDs for different protocols, data formats, and so on... that's the sort of thing that's already got perfectly good methods of communication not involving different TLDs. For example, there are longstanding traditions of using hostnames under a domain to represent different protocols or purposes, like 'www' for a Web server, 'ftp' for an FTP server, 'news' for an NNTP server, etc. (e.g., "www.example.net", "ftp.example.net"). "wap.example.net" is a format in wide use for mobile-specific sites using the WAP protocl and WML data format.

Also, HTTP's format negotiation features permit HTML and WML to coexist at the same URI, with the appropriate format sent depending on the user agent.

Having the TLD indicate the media type would seem to be putting this information at the wrong level of the logical structure. Existing TLDs like .com, .edu, etc., designate types of entities owning the site (commercial, educational, etc.), not the type of protocol used by them... all sorts of different protocols coexist on these domains.
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