dotSCO is delighted that the First Minister of Scotland, Alex Salmond MSP, has announced that the Scottish Government will be supporting a bid for new top-level internet domain (TLD) for the Scots community of interest online.
The Scottish Government setup a working group to consider a community top-level for the worldwide family of Scots in response to a petition from dotSCO earlier this year. As our previous newsletter highlighted our Policy Director, Davie Hutchison, has been an active member of that working group.
The First Minister has released research from the working group which shows that there is strong support for a new community TLD. 58% of organisations (from the public, private and third sectors) in Scotland support the creation of a Scots community TLD with only 18% being against. A huge 82% of organisations in the Scots Diaspora back the application with just 8% being against.
As was indicate in the last newsletter the final choice of what string or code to apply for was still under consideration, either ‘.sco’ or ‘.scot’ .The research from the working group has shown that some 59% have supported ‘.Scot’ with 14% preferring ‘.sco’. With .scot being the clear preference of the community we will continue our campaign for a new TLD using that code.
The dotSCO campaign team is looking forward to the year ahead and helping to prepare the bid to ICANN for a new Internet domain for the worldwide family of Scots!
After literally years of speculation and several delays, ICANN have this month published the draft Application Guidebook for applying for new top-level internet domains. The Guidebook, although still in draft form, provides some of the detailed criteria that we will have to satisfy. In a few months there will be a second draft followed by the final version in the 2nd quarter of 2009. On the current timetable it looks like the window to make bids for new top level domains will open in Autumn 2009. If this was the case then we are looking at the early stages of 2010 for dotSCO domains becoming available for purchase.
ICANN are reportedly expecting up to 500 applications for new top level domains, some will be community bids like ours and dotCYM while some will be ‘open’ commercial projects.
The new top level domains will fall into 4 broad categories –
(1) Commercial TLDs -such as dotSHOP or dotWINE. (2) ‘Vanity’ TLDs – such as dotEBAY and dotGOOGLE.
(3) City TLDs – such as dotNYC, dotBERLIN, dotLONDON and dotPARIS.
(4) Community TLDs – such as dotSCO, or dotCYM for the Welsh Community, dotGAL for the Galician Community and dotNAI for the North American Indigenous Community.
Since we began three years ago we have been campaigning for a new top-level internet domain for the Scots community of interest online, Scottish Culture and Scotland’s languages. The ‘string’ or ‘code’ that we have been using has be SCO, however we believe that since this top-level domain is for the community that it should be chosen by them too.
In the near future we are going to establish a mechanism to allow supporters of the dotSCO campaign to vote and chose their preference SCO or SCOT – the final decision will be up to you.