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The .art TLD
June 1, 2014 6:36 PM   Subscribe

The .art Top Level Domain. It will be one of the new ICANN generic top level domains. Ten outfits want to manage it (applicant list is closed, winner will be one of those ten). Of the ten, notables are Top Level Domain Holdings Ltd., which has applied for 68 top level domains (at $185,000 US per application) and Donuts (Baxter Tigers, LLC), which has applied for 307 TLDs. At the other end of the scale, two applicants want to create Community TLDs.These are e-flux, an association of art professionals, museum directors, gallery owners, etc.; and well-known online art-slash-community site DeviantART. Here is e-flux's announcement to its members of its intention to apply. TechCrunch has a copy of deviantart's letter to ICANN.

e-flux also has a page headlined SAVE DOT ART, "An Open Letter to the ICANN Board and the Governmental Advisory Committee" which starts out in a somewhat orotund manner ("Throughout the history of humankind, art has always been created both inside and outside of structures of government and management.") and goes on (tl;dr version) to grump about there being only two community-TLD applicants that made the final cut compared to eight reeks-of-commerce-only applicants. As would I, if I had a vote. I told esr back in '92 that commercializing the internet was a bum idea. He didn't listen.

The e-flux open letter does note regarding itself and deviantart "Both organizations mutually support each other’s applications" which I take to mean "if we don't win we hope the other community-TLD applicant does." The TechCrunch article, linked outside, also claims "deviantART says the two groups support each other’s applications" which is in the letter TechCrunch has, and "[the two groups] would be involved in policy issues if either gets awarded the domain" but has no link for that.

Some of the other new TLDs are .sex, .dog, .rockwool, .gmbh, .music, .game, .tires, .love, .dds, .lupin, .med, .tube, .clinique, .lego, .baby, .progressive, .corp, .music, .movie, .seat, .mba, .islam, .lifeinsurance, .shriram, and .sucks.

When will we have a decision on .art? Some time in 2014. With luck.
posted by jfuller (42 comments total) 11 users marked this as a favorite

 
f.art
posted by wcfields at 6:46 PM on June 1 [16 favorites]


Another new TLD: .holdings
posted by hellojed at 6:47 PM on June 1


.rockwool?

Okay, I googled it, and I'm still befuddled. .rockwell would make more sense.
posted by Etrigan at 6:56 PM on June 1 [1 favorite]


Who would ever use this ridiculous bullshit? And why would they pay $185,000 just to file an application? Is this some kind of money laundering scheme, or what?

Seriously, have you ever seen one of these alt TLDs and not thought "spam" before clicking delete/moving on?
posted by indubitable at 7:03 PM on June 1 [6 favorites]


It's good to see the original promise of OpenNIC finally coming to fruition...at $185,000 per applicant per suffix.
posted by fireoyster at 7:03 PM on June 1 [2 favorites]


I really want to own clownpenis.f.art.
posted by mathowie at 7:27 PM on June 1 [9 favorites]


> Okay, I googled it, and I'm still befuddled.

My source. Not the most authoritative source ever, maybe, but I was charmed.
posted by jfuller at 7:34 PM on June 1


Who would ever use this ridiculous bullshit? And why would they pay $185,000 just to file an application? Is this some kind of money laundering scheme, or what?

Back of the envelope, a 10% chance of a decent return on $185,000 means they believe that the .art TLD is worth... about $2.5M in revenue over five years? That's ten to one for the initial bet, plus a rate of return that beats typical market returns for $200k _very_ comfortably. At (say, to make the numbers easier) $50/year, that's 10,000 ".art" TLDs, say 12,000 when you include infra/support costs, which should be pretty minimal for an established TLD owner.

This is all armchair market research, but I would imagine that there are probably fifteen thousand organizations and people out there who'd register an .art TLD in a heartbeat, and maybe more. If that's the case, it doesn't seem all that unreasonable to make that bet, if you've got $200k you can afford to wager.
posted by mhoye at 7:37 PM on June 1 [1 favorite]


dumb.domains
posted by slater at 7:46 PM on June 1 [8 favorites]


I can't imagine .lupin being used for anything other than Harry Potter fanfic.

remus.lupin/snape_otp
posted by Metroid Baby at 7:50 PM on June 1 [2 favorites]


Why not Lupin the 3rd?
posted by JHarris at 8:00 PM on June 1 [3 favorites]


.lego

WTF?
posted by ChurchHatesTucker at 8:05 PM on June 1


I'm still baffled by .ninja.
posted by McCoy Pauley at 8:15 PM on June 1


The existing .museum TLD has been such a rousing success, of course we need a .art to complement it. Surely .palace and .gallery and .scam aren't far behind?
posted by Nelson at 8:24 PM on June 1 [1 favorite]


Some of the other new TLDs are .yadda, .yadda, .yadda, .yadda, .yadda, .yadda, .yadda, .yadda, .yadda, .yadda, .yadda, .yadda, .yadda, .yadda, .yadda, .yadda, .yadda, .yadda, .yadda, .yadda, .yadda, .yadda, .yadda, .yadda, .yadda, .yadda, and .sucks.

.sucks is such an obvious rent-seeking tactic. "Oh, so you're a social media director for $car-company. What can I do you for?" ... "No, I guess my secretary must have deleted the email. She tends to delete any offer under a few million, I guess." ... "Tell you what. If you really want to own car-company.sucks, just up your bid by a few hundred thousand and I'll be sure to take a look at it."
posted by sebastienbailard at 8:49 PM on June 1 [3 favorites]


I don't think domain extensions should be more than three characters. I'm not typing out "whatever.progressive". I didn't think they'd go this crazy with them. There's so many of them now, it's mind-boggling.
posted by Redfield at 8:52 PM on June 1


dennismoore.lupin

How many other of the new TLDs will point back to a Monty Python sketch?
argument.clinic?
silly.walks?
dead.parrot?
crunchy.frog?
okay.lumberjack?
.nudge?
.twit?
and the TLD that would save email... .spam
posted by oneswellfoop at 8:55 PM on June 1 [8 favorites]


BLUE UNICORN: Hey, Charlie. Hey Charlie wake up.
PINK UNICORN: Yeah Charlie. You silly sleepy-head, wake up.
CHARLIE THE UNICORN: {Groans} Oh God you guys. This better be pretty freakin' important. Is the meadow on fire?
BLUE UNICORN: No Charlie. .unicorn scored only 5 out of the required 22 points on its technical evaluation, easily the worst score they can recall seeing. Worst score Charlie.
PINK UNICORN: Yeah, Charlie, worst score Charlie. Worst score Charlie.
BLUE UNICORN: Yeah Charlie, it's the worst score. We got the worst score Charlie.
CHARLIE THE UNICORN: Yeah, worst score, right. I'm just gonna, you know, go back to sleep now.
posted by unliteral at 9:47 PM on June 1 [7 favorites]


And then the .unicorn TLD sings a song about the domain name system and explodes.
posted by JHarris at 10:00 PM on June 1


People are going to set their keyboards on fire typing so fast if/when a .fart TLD happens. On the bright side clownpenis.tips is totally available for like 17$ a year on namecheap. I briefly considered it but decided I'd just toss that out here for someone much more imaginative than myself.

If the site graphics don't incorporate red ball nose ends I'll be more than a little dissapointed...
posted by mcrandello at 11:00 PM on June 1


I can't wait for .mesothelioma, it's gonna be so convenient.
posted by boo_radley at 12:06 AM on June 2


.rockwool and .lego are clearly just about trademark protection.
posted by dhartung at 12:18 AM on June 2 [1 favorite]


As well intentioned and honourable as e-flux and deviantart are (presumably, I don't have any experience of deviantart) I'm nervous of anyone imposing curatorial control over the .art domain and deciding what should or shouldn't qualify. Even though their intentions are good they must know they're opening a nightmarish can of worms - the traditional free-for-all system seems preferable to me
posted by silence at 1:57 AM on June 2 [2 favorites]


http://www.alt.barney.dinosaur.die.die.die
posted by rory at 2:45 AM on June 2 [8 favorites]


smelltheg.love

theonlywayises.sex

dont.go.back.to.rockwool

you.cant.stop.the.music
nobody.can.stop.the.music
posted by rory at 2:50 AM on June 2 [1 favorite]


Is this one of those things that if we ignore it, it goes away?

I think it is.

Watch me try.
posted by Devonian at 3:05 AM on June 2 [7 favorites]


When can my email address be radical@awesome.cool? That's all I care about.
posted by Sticherbeast at 4:31 AM on June 2 [1 favorite]


sh.art
posted by quonsar II: smock fishpants and the temple of foon at 6:00 AM on June 2 [3 favorites]


quonsar II: smock fishpants and the temple of foon: "sh.art"

clearly a site dedicated to the beauty of bourne shell scripts, no?
posted by namewithoutwords at 6:33 AM on June 2 [2 favorites]


> I'm nervous of anyone imposing curatorial control over the .art domain and deciding what should or shouldn't qualify.

That's certainly a concern (and one mefi users might be especially aware of, given our experience of life with both formal moderators and mod-wannabees.) In spite of that, I'm cheering for one or the other community-TLD applicant to become the domain admin. I could be wrong to want that and have been before.

As between e-flux and deviantart, New York artist Tom Moody also has an overview of the subject that pops up on the first page of GOOG results I get (search string being ".art" Top Level Domain) on which he observes "Deviantart.com would be an interesting choice because its large community of creatives thrives despite near-invisibility to the theory-driven art world represented by E-flux. Its winning would be noteworthy because it would mean a web-based art culture bested one rooted in a gallery-based power structure (evidenced by E-flux's closely-held mailing list of curators, museum directors, critics, etc.)"

e-flux (per ICANN) proposes to require new sites registered in the .art domain to be "endorsed as legitimate by two existing .art registrants, thereby creating a network of verifiable art professionals." Which sure does sound to me like "amateurs need not apply" (though ICBW and have been before.) I personally don't know a soul at saatchi galleries or even anyone who has ever exhibited with them.

Deviantart's own announcement has a different flavor. "Organizations or others dedicated to the arts need to know that the people behind .art will respect their names and their status and not just sell 'Louvre,' 'Chagall,' 'MOMA," or 'StarCraftFan' to the highest bidder or to the first one in the door." No idea whether anyone at either e-flux or ICANN has any clue what StarCraftFan might be.

Whether deviantart's stated intentions would last once their little spinoff organization DAdotART actually got control and (maybe) went power- and money-mad I dunno. It has happened before. At least they obviously have no problem with snobbery over 12-year-olds posting MLP fan art to deviantart itself. Or 28-year-olds, come to that.
posted by jfuller at 6:55 AM on June 2 [2 favorites]


Previously: with such in-demand TLDs as .guitars, .sexy and .tattoo, Donuts seems to be going after the lucrative mail.com multiple domain offerings (their free email sign-up form is tucked away at the top of their main page, hidden amidst the generic Current Events You Might Want To Read About that cover the main page), but with TLDs.
posted by filthy light thief at 7:17 AM on June 2


I went to mail.com and a huge popup appeared offering me an email address, so no it's not totally hidden.

When I clicked the popup it told me I'm not allowed to sign up for an address within Germany and I should use gmx.de instead.

(I think this is because Germany has specific data protection and don't-sell-data-to-advertisers laws that most US companies cannot even handle.)

The web is so dumb right now. Except Metafilter. It's cool.
posted by sixohsix at 8:40 AM on June 2 [1 favorite]


I already have a cute domain for my work: egypt.urnash.com. I really have no interest in acquiring egypt.urnash.art. Or egypt.urnash.comics for that matter, given that's what I'm doing right now.

Also, I'm on DA and I really don't know if I want them in charge of anything.

Also if you get one of these new domains you'll start having to train people out of thinking that ".com means a site on the Internet". We'll have to come up with some new way to indicate that this arbitrary string of period-delimited words are something you can type into your browser. I figure something will evolve but I don't want to be involved in figuring it out with my publicity money...
posted by egypturnash at 9:07 AM on June 2


Blinky Frostbite, LLC has applied for control of .creditcard

There are a LOT of obviously machine-generated LLCs applying for various TLDs. I wonder who they'll turn out to be a front for.
posted by egypturnash at 9:15 AM on June 2 [1 favorite]


.rockwool and .lego are clearly just about trademark protection.

Okay, I can see that Lego wants to protect its brand and have kids be able to find it, like, supereasy.

But I doff my hat to the mad genius who convinced the CEO of Rockwool that they had to fork over $185K to protect themselves.

"Sir, the data clearly indicate that our target demographic has problems finding 'www.rockwool.com,' but 'www.rockwool.rockwool' makes perfect sense to them."
"Oh, I don't know about this newfangled Internet stuff..."
"Plus I heard that Woolrock Ltd. might try to steal it out from under us."
"That sounds exactly like something those bastards would do! Spend the money, Smithers!"
posted by Etrigan at 9:21 AM on June 2 [3 favorites]


What I find most irritating about this whole affair is that Amazon has applied for like twenty gTLDs where they just straight up say that they're only going to register their own websites. And these are super generic things like ".room". I can begrudgingly accept the for-profit registrars because infrastructure doesn't just poof out of thin air, but letting Amazon have exclusive control of ".room" because they paid a bribe filing fee of $185,000 doesn't sit right with me.
posted by Pyry at 9:35 AM on June 2 [3 favorites]


Don't forget .sexy, .christmas, .ninja and .iwishiwasmakingthisup.
posted by four panels at 1:19 PM on June 2


15+1 Cool Name Ideas For A World Without Search Engines

thesecond.sex
hot.dog
[film/book IP]the.game
allyouneedis.love
Arsene.lupin

Ah.med
Doo.med
playmobil.lego
ohbaby.baby
rock.progressive

rentseeking.corp
ofthepants.seat
Zu.mba
yusuf.islam
thisidea.sucks

horsebehindthec.art
posted by ersatz at 1:56 PM on June 2


There are a LOT of obviously machine-generated LLCs applying for various TLDs. I wonder who they'll turn out to be a front for.

Wintermute.
posted by reynir at 2:37 PM on June 2


not.art
posted by maryr at 4:49 PM on June 2


egypturnash: "Also if you get one of these new domains you'll start having to train people out of thinking that ".com means a site on the Internet". We'll have to come up with some new way to indicate that this arbitrary string of period-delimited words are something you can type into your browser. I figure something will evolve but I don't want to be involved in figuring it out with my publicity money..."

We can start our address with something web related; maybe http for Hyper Text Transfer Protocol. But then we'll need something to separate that from the domain so that someone can register httpXXXXX.com. How about a colon and two front slashes, I don't think anyone uses those characters in that order for anything so it should make a good delimiter. And we can swap out the http part for different protocols like FTP and MAGNET and those will reference things other than web pages. We'll call the whole thing a Universal Resource Locator. It'll be glorious.
posted by Mitheral at 11:16 PM on June 2


> you'll start having to train people out of thinking that ".com means a site on the Internet".

Thread looks over, pretty much, so maybe now's a good time to go waaaay out on a limb and make a firm prediction: the .art domain will be THE place for fanart. IF a domain registrar is chosen who's willing to register that kind of site, and IF registration is affordable for the sort of folks who do fanart. Given both those ifs I expect that everyone with the least passing interest in fanart will know, all at once all over the net by magical ESP osmosis, that .art is the place to put it and look for it. Lisa-n-Joeys.RainbowBriteFan.art. Just as surely as there once was a geocities.
posted by jfuller at 11:13 AM on June 3


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