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Britain Gets National .uk Web Address 111

Posted by timothy
from the actually-top-level dept.
hypnosec (2231454) writes 'Starting today businesses and individuals in the UK will be able to register a new national web address (".uk") and drop their existing ".co.uk" or ".com" suffix in favour of a shorter and snappier domain name. The entire process along with the transition is being overseen by private yet not-for-profit organisation Nominet, which has already started notifying existing customers with a ".co.uk" domain of their chance to adopt a ".uk" domain. Nominet will reserve all ".uk" domain names, which already have a ".co.uk" counterparts, for the next five years offering registrants the chance to adopt the new domain and to keep cyber squatters at bay.'
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Britain Gets National .uk Web Address

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  • In other words (Score:5, Insightful)

    by rujasu (3450319) on Tuesday June 10, 2014 @08:51AM (#47201925)

    Everyone with a .co.uk domain name is now basically obligated to register (and pay for) another domain name within the next five years to avoid confusion.

  • by BigIrv (695710)
    on F
  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday June 10, 2014 @08:53AM (#47201937)

    As a Nominet member I voted against this (twice now, they were defeated the first time, then ignored everyone). Perhaps someone from Nominet can tell me why somedomain.uk is pre-allocated to whoever has somedomain.co.uk rather than the owner of somedomain.org.uk.

    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by Anonymous Coward

      Yes I completely agree.

      In my case, the .co.uk address is a cyber squatter. Why should he get priority over a genuine domain?

      • by ledow (319597)

        Cyber-squatters pay more money for domains than you ever will.

        Hence, Nominet has really just offered a product preferentially to it's prime (if unethical) customers.

        And to think we complain about ICANN not being completely "International"... Nominet doesn't even represent the interests it's supposed to at all...

    • For us non-UK folks, can you explain the distinction? I mean, obviously they are different domains, but what about org.uk suggests it should be used instead of co.uk?

      • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday June 10, 2014 @11:49AM (#47203479)

        Not a UK person, but I believe that they're complaining about the fact that, for instance, the person who registered london.co.uk (currently a domain parking page) gets preference for the new london.uk domain over the person who registered london.org.uk (apparently "The London Organization", which appears to be a Visitors/Business organization to promote the city of London.) Or why the (again, domain parking) owner of oxford.co.uk gets preference for obtaining oxford.uk as opposed to the University of Oxford, which has oxford.ac.uk registered.

        • What I wonder is why does it matter. Ever since the first decent search engine came into being, guessing domain names stopped being a necessity. london.uk or london.org.uk or london.frog matters not a whit to me if it's the site I'm looking for. And any decent search engine will distinguish them quite easily. A proliferation of TLDs makes it easier to get the name you want and still have it be short enough to be easy to type. It will eventually make a shambles of the hierarchical structure of DNS but t
  • by Anonymous Coward

    ... or they'll be battling, e.g. Frederick Connors in the courts.

  • I've been waiting for this. I pre registered kowalch.uk for making awesome email addresses. -peter@kowalch.uk
  • That reminds me.. (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Virtucon (127420) on Tuesday June 10, 2014 @09:24AM (#47202195)

    "The new phonebook's here! The new phonebook's here!"
    "Page 73, Johnson, Naven R. I'm somebody now! Millions of people look at this book every day!"
    "This is the kind of spontaneous publicity, your name in print that makes people!"
    "Things are going to start happening to me now."

    - The Jerk

  • What about Ukraine? (Score:1, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward

    Surely they deserve .UK more than United Kingdom, a farce of an aggregation of separate "countries" who love the use of the term UK unless it's football worlcup where they can send multiple teams (Scotland, England, ...). What a joke!

    • by rossdee (243626)

      I think United Kingdom has been around for longer as an independent country, Ukraine was just part of the Soviet (and before that Russia) empire.

      • by ledow (319597) on Tuesday June 10, 2014 @09:44AM (#47202337) Homepage

        However, technically, the UK's identifier for everything else is actually "gb", hence we should have the ".gb" instead of ".uk".

        But, first-come, first-served which is pretty much the mantra of anything to do with grabbing domain names despite the complete irrelevance of having a "particular" domain to modern computing.

        • by Alioth (221270)

          .gb would be less accurate than .uk - Northern Ireland is part of the UK but not part of Great Britain.

          • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

            by pablo.cl (539566)

            There should be nor arguing about CCTLDs. All CCTLDs, (except for .uk, which is an oddity) are in ISO 3166-1. The standard may be right or wrong, accurate or vague, fair or unfair, but it's a standard.

            .gb would be standard.

            • by gbjbaanb (229885)

              hmm. but then what would Northern Ireland get if the rest of the UK was given the GB code?

              On the other hand, .ni might be an interesting code, but would surely encourage independence claims from the republicans in NI.

          • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

            by 91degrees (207121)

            The official ISO 3166-1 2 letter code for the UK is GB though - Short for "United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland".

            "United" and "kingdom" aren't usually considered part of a country's name according to the ISO. Although it does seem a little odd that no exception was made in this case, since the United Staes of America is US.

            • by PRMan (959735)
              It was done because everyone calls America "US" already. And "UK" is extremely clear where "GB" could be Gambia or something.
            • by TeknoHog (164938)

              The official ISO 3166-1 2 letter code for the UK is GB though - Short for "United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland".

              "United" and "kingdom" aren't usually considered part of a country's name according to the ISO. Although it does seem a little odd that no exception was made in this case, since the United Staes of America is US.

              In other words, UK = {GB, NI}. There's nothing wrong with metonymy (using a part when referring to the whole), but I think we can all agree that NI is a lot (as in "Sir *lot") is more appropriate for the country known for all the knights.

        • by fellip_nectar (777092) on Tuesday June 10, 2014 @11:16AM (#47203157)

          The UK was initially assigned .gb and it's still reserved for us. But we got to use .uk too, as it made the transition from JANET NRS [wikipedia.org] to DNS easier for our pre-existing academic network.

    • Re: (Score:2, Flamebait)

      by qbast (1265706)
      Don't worry, you will be using .ru soon enough.
    • by omnichad (1198475)

      The TLD .uk was already in Britain's control. They just decided to not use that and to use subdomains such as .co.uk and .org.uk instead. There's nothing new about who is allowed to use .uk.

  • For example: http://bggc.org.uk/ [bggc.org.uk] vs. http://bggc.co.uk/ [bggc.co.uk] - is the new http://bggc.uk/ [bggc.uk] going to glof club or gliding club and why?
  • This is all wrong (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Grishnakh (216268) on Tuesday June 10, 2014 @10:30AM (#47202737)

    What we should be doing is eliminating top-level names like .com, .org, .net, and especially .mil, because these are all American-biased. Instead, every country should get its own two-letter domain (.uk, .us, etc.), and inside each of those there should be .co, .org, .mil, .gov, etc. So Twinings Tea from London would have the site "twinings.co.uk", and that's it. Apple Computer would be "apple.co.us". Multinational corporations would get sites in the country where the corporate HQ is located. No multiple domains for the same company; companies only need a commercial address, not a .net or a .org since they aren't non-commercial entities. The Apache Foundation would get "apache.org.us", the US Navy would get "navy.mil.us", the Royal (British) Navy would get "navy.mil.uk", etc.

    What they've done now is just a total mess.

    • by Richy_T (111409)

      There is a .us domain. .com has just about become multinational now anyway.

      Though you are absolutely correct that it's a mess.

      • by Grishnakh (216268)

        Yes, there is a .us, but no one uses it. Even US governmental entities don't use .us or .gov most of the time; lots of town governments and other entities have .com or .org domains for some dumb reason. In Arizona for instance, the DMV (they call it MVD) website is "servicearizona.com". WTF? It should be something like mvd.az.gov.us. But I guess they think that's too hard for idiots to remember. In this age of Google (and other search engines), websites don't need to be that easy to remember; if you d

        • by tlhIngan (30335)

          Yes, there is a .us, but no one uses it. Even US governmental entities don't use .us or .gov most of the time; lots of town governments and other entities have .com or .org domains for some dumb reason. In Arizona for instance, the DMV (they call it MVD) website is "servicearizona.com". WTF? It should be something like mvd.az.gov.us. But I guess they think that's too hard for idiots to remember. In this age of Google (and other search engines), websites don't need to be that easy to remember; if you don't r

          • by Anonymous Coward

            > Netscape will try a lookup of "www." what-you-typed ".com" just in case.

            And, it is still causing problems today. Twenty-five years ago when I first got on the Internet, we all understood hierarchies and would often use hostnames rather than FQDN, for example, just the name prism. Also, we used the next level of the hierarchy if we wanted to access a server in another department, for example prism.cs if we were under the .eng hierarchy. Now Netscape, aka Iceweasel, will send the hostname you typed in

            • by Richy_T (111409)

              Annoyingly, it will also do this for unqualified local names also if the website is down. So if there's a problem with a local app, you get redirected and you can't even F5 until it comes up. Not to mention, as you say, the potential for broadcasting private information to the local web.

              Broken by design.

          • by PRMan (959735)
            We have a ton of idiots in California, but ours is: www.dmv.ca.gov
          • by gbjbaanb (229885)

            But if the .com domins went away, the idiots would have to get used to the new naming system and you can guarantee there'd be a load of information on mainstream news sites telling people what has happened, why and what to do about it.

            Generally, they use Google for the .coms anyway.

            It would have an advantage of spreading the .co.xx domain names around anyway, rather than having the pretty poor arbitration and cybersquatting that goes on at the moment. Slashdot.co.us - no worries. Certainly better than Slash

        • by pnutjam (523990)
          SSL certs are to blame for some of this. I you are trying to get azdept.com and you have registerd azdept.com, you can get that no problem. If you are trying to get dept.az.gov.us you need to get your ssl approved up that whole chain. The owner of .az.gov.us, the owner of .gov.us.

          It's a painful process.
          • by omnichad (1198475)

            That has nothing to do with it. Both .uk and .co.uk are at the registrar level. No problem getting SSL for either one. dept.az.gov.us would be a subdomain of a registered domain. Not the same thing at all.

            Honestly, even subdomain validation works fine if you have administrative emails on that subdomain. Maybe EV-SSL is different in that regard. I have worked with a reseller account for SSL and don't see any isue.

          • by psyclone (187154)
            No, not for SSL. It's only a single certificate for: www.arent.new.gtlds.fun.wtf

            However, you are correct for DNSSEC, the roots must sign .wtf, which must sign fun.wtf, which can then sign the A record for www.arent.new.gtlds inside the fun.wtf zone.
    • by Anonymous Coward

      Youre absolutely right - freedom of choice is so messy and makes it hard to figure things out. Someone should do something about that.

    • by sudon't (580652)

      What we should be doing is eliminating top-level names like .com, .org, .net, and especially .mil, because these are all American-biased. Instead, every country should get its own two-letter domain (.uk, .us, etc.), and inside each of those there should be .co, .org, .mil, .gov, etc. .

      Hey, that actually makes sense!

    • by Kjella (173770) on Tuesday June 10, 2014 @12:46PM (#47203985) Homepage

      So Twinings Tea from London would have the site "twinings.co.uk", and that's it.

      And who'd go around remembering that Twinings is British, Sony is Japanese, Audi is German and so on? If it's sold here, I expect a localized version of their website in my country's domain (even if it's just a redirect to $brand.com/countrycode, as so many do), the country of origin is only marginally interesting. It makes guessing the correct domain harder without the use of Google, not easier.

      No multiple domains for the same company

      Let's forbid anyone doing anything about domain squatting. And won't this be massive fun during mergers, acquisitions and spinoffs.

      companies only need a commercial address, not a .net or a .org since they aren't non-commercial entities.

      The world and their dog already has a dotcom no matter what, you're trying to clean a pool that has more piss than water in it.

      Stop the madness, just accept globalization as a fact and move the whole .com to become root domains at reasonable prices and that's that. Google is just "google", Twinings Tea is just "twinings" and let Apple the computer company and Apple the music company and Apple the produce company fight over who's "apple", absolutely nobody wants their domain name to be some kind of unique categorization down a tree, it's "google" not "google.searchengine". Reserve the two-letter domains as special cases for nations and let the free market settle the rest. Practically there's no problem, are you Tesla building cars? Get teslamotors.com and the whole thing is solved with 99% less drama.

      • by Grishnakh (216268)

        And who'd go around remembering that Twinings is British, Sony is Japanese, Audi is German and so on?

        They don't have to; that's what Google/Bing/DDG is for.

        If it's sold here, I expect a localized version of their website in my country's domain (even if it's just a redirect to $brand.com/countrycode, as so many do)

        That shouldn't be done either. If they sell in a country, it'd be in their interest to have a domain in that country's domain: Sony would have sony.co.jp for Japan, and sony.co.us for the US, and

    • by PRMan (959735)
      Well. All you guys DID start squatting on OUR Arpanet...
  • With all the spamming and phishing going on, I don't understand why more businesses don't use the *.ltd.uk and *.plc.uk domains which can ONLY be registered by the legal owners of the Limited company or Corporation, preventing people from domain squatting and adding a level of trust similar to https.

    • by Richy_T (111409)

      .com is .king.

    • by u38cg (607297)
      Because websurfers, being a flighty and difficult to please lot, think that .ltd.uk is black magic and refuse to go anywhere near it. Srsly.
  • Man : "God, why did you give me this useless appendix? it serves no purpose, and it gave me appendicitus"?
    God : "Ah i see you have trouble with that appendix, what you need is MORE OF THEM!!"
    Man : "Eh? uehah wait a moment... "
    God : "Sure, that one i put in first wasn't really in the best spot, the next five i put in will be much better... "

    Seriously, i don't see why we cant just drop ALL top level domains entirely. 'google' not 'google.com' 'slashdot' not 'slashdot.org' etc. if businesses really
  • The public suffix list [publicsuffix.org] will need revision, I suppose.

  • Can we visit their website?

  • Quick, someone get me in contact with Orchard House Foods [ohf.co.uk]...

  • This reminds me of the inanity of a certain supposed educational institution that insists on calling itself 'KU'.

    "Oh, so you're Kansas University."

    "No! We are the University of Kansas!"

    "So... you're UK."

    "NO!!! That's Kentucky! We're KU!!"

    Lather, Rinse, Stupid.
    • by u38cg (607297)
      Reverse Polish naming. Calm down.
    • by MiniMike (234881)

      As a graduate of the U of I (no, not that one, the other- no not that one either. The good one. No, not that good one. Nevermind...) I can sympathize with the confusion aspect of this (although at least we keep our letters in the right order).

  • Since browsers now all support IRIs, this is likely going to be a big problem when someone registers something like gоv.uk or pоlice.uk (note that 2nd letter in each case is not 'o' but CYRILLIC SMALL LETTER O: U+043E) and starts sending out "official" directives.
    • My point would have been made a lot more succinctly if Slashdot's Unicode handling weren't completely hosed.

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