The New gTLDs Are Almost Here. Will You Be Ready?

The first new generic Top-Level Domains (“gTLDs”) are expected to launch any day now — triggering what many predict will be the most significant transformation of the Internet since its inception. For decades, “.com” reigned supreme among gTLDs (Internet speak for the suffix of a domain name). However, the current list of available alternatives will soon grow exponentially. Over the next few years, nearly 1,500 new gTLDs will flood the Internet—covering everything from industry-based terms (.casino, .ski, .money) to geographic designations (.vegas, .nyc, .tokyo) to brand names (.nike, .jeep, .nfl). We will even see the first gTLDs with non-Latin scripts, like .???? (Russian for “website”).

Why should I care about the new gTLDs?

Proponents regard the new gTLDs as the solution to an increasingly overcrowded Internet, which has forced some companies to pay astronomical sums for domains in the secondary market. In contrast, critics view the new gTLDs as breeding grounds for cybersquatting activity, resulting in increased enforcement costs for trademark owners. For better or worse, we can all agree that early action may mean the difference between thriving and surviving in this shifting Internet environment.

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DISCLAIMER: Because of the generality of this update, the information provided herein may not be applicable in all situations and should not be acted upon without specific legal advice based on particular situations.

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