New domain name deadline extended by ICANN following software hitch
12th Apr 2012 | 18:59
gTLD registration process halted
ICANN has been forced to extend the deadline for companies to apply for a host of new suffixes to their domain names.
The organisation, which regulates the naming of internet sites, were hours away from closing the application period, when an embarrassing technical glitch halted the process.
In a massive shake-up of the rules, ICANN has allowed hundreds of new words beyond the 22 original .net or .com type top-level domains (gTLDs) and the 522 signifying the country of origin, such as .co.uk.
Now companies can apply to control suffixes under their own brand (.google or .pepsi) or through other genetic words like .camera or .pizza.
Companies must pay £114,000 ($185,000) to apply for the new naming convention, regardless of whether they are successful.
Successful applicants will then control that suffix and will be allowed to charge anyone who wishes register their website under that umbrella.
For example, if Apple was to apply for and win .apple, authorised re-sellers may be able to own a .apple website if granted permission.
ICANN (Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers) says the deadline has now been extended one week until April 20th, following a technical issue, which caused "unusual behaviour with the operation of the [application] system."
The regulators added: "ICANN is taking the most conservative approach possible to protect all applicants and allow adequate time to resolve the issue."
ICANN was quick to point out there was no hint of a cyber attack.