Internet Assigned Numbers Authority


Statement on Generic Top Level Domains (gTLDs)

In light of recent developments concerning new generic top level domains (gTLDs) and frequently confusing press coverage of these developments, the IANA has been receiving inquiries about and requests for assignment of gTLDs that are not appropriately addressed to the IANA.

The IANA manages the root of the Domain Name System (DNS) to promote stability and robustness. This role is primarily one of making minor technical decisions about the location of root nameservers, the qualifications of applicants to manage country code top level domains, and evaluating any additions to the established generic top level domains which are proposed by the community.

Through the course of development of the Internet, IANA has historically played a central role in the management of the DNS to support and implement the community consensus about the appropriate overall structure of the system.

There is now a community consensus that additional registries and additional gTLDs are needed to deal with trademark-related scarcity and conflicts, to add flexibility to the choice of domain names and to promote competition in the provision of domain name registration.

The IANA initiated and supported a community process to arrive at a system for selecting and establishing these new registries and gTLDs. This process culminated in the International Ad Hoc Committee (IAHC) report and the signing of the gTLD-MoU. This system is now moving forward with the formation of the Policy Advisory Board (PAB) and the Policy Oversight Committee (POC) contemplated by the IAHC report.

The IANA fully supports this activity and expects all new gTLDs to be established through this new system. That is, any changes to the root zone (or the dot domain) to add new gTLDs will be as a result of decisions made under the new POC/PAB/CORE system.


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Last modified 28-May-97.