ICANN, Domain Names and You

Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) is a nonprofit organization that is responsible for a bunch of technical things that are an essential part of the inner workings of the Internet.

These include such things as IP address space allocation, domain name system management, protocol parameter assignment and root server system management.

ICANN Is the governing body that also accredits domain name registrars (these can also be accredited by a national ccTLD authority). ICANN Handles what is known as generic top level domains, or gTLDs for short.

These include .com, .net and .org. It has authority only over those generic top-level domains, not what are known as the Country Code Top-Level Domains (ccTLDs), such as .ca (Canada), .de (Germany or Deutschland), .fr (France), .in (India), .uk (United Kingdom), .us (United States), etc.

ICANN was created by the late John Postel in1998 In response to the US Department of Commerce. It is run much like any other large organization.

icann-fellows-san-juan-2007
29th ICANN meeting

It consists of 19 directors and 9 at-large directors who are elected to their office by a membership organization. The directors serve for one year and their successors are drawn from the pool of at-large directors.

The whole domain name registration system eventually transitioned over from government authority to private hands, and ICANN was the organization that coordinated and oversaw this decentralization. It was part of a move to integrate the registration process into the overall global community.

The companies that have the authority to register and manage domain names are chosen by ICANN to act on its behalf. There are a number of such companies that offer domain name registration services.

Some of the top domain name registrars include Domainz, Dynadot, Go Daddy, Hover, Name.com, NameCheap, Network Solutions, NeuStar, Register.com, Tucows, and Web.com.

ICANN continues to work to enhance and expand the domain name system. The organization has recently announced the largest expansion of the Internet address system since it was created in the 1980s.

The organization has accepted proposals for 1,409 new domain name suffixes. These include .love, .joy, .beauty, .cruise, .kids, .tires, .app and .music. The new suffixes may possibly be used by large web companies to dominate their share of the Internet. For example, Amazon and Google both want .apps and .music, while Gallo Vineyards wants .barefoot!

Says Rod Beckstrom, current ICANN CEO, “The Internet is about to change forever.” Whether the new suffixes make using the Internet easier or harder remains to be seen.

Perhaps one day we’ll will need to figure out whether we wish to visit Apple.com, Apple.app or Apple.music!

Tim Arends is an Internet, Apple and computer user for nearly 20 years who is well-versed in technology and the Web. He provides freelance writing services to bloggers, Internet marketers and app developers. Hire him for a complete content-creation strategy for promoting your business.

Author bio:
Tim Arends is an Internet, Apple and computer user for nearly 20 years who is well-versed in technology and the Web. He provides freelance writing services to bloggers, Internet marketers and app developers. Hire him for a complete content-creation strategy for promoting your business.