The mission of the .blog TLD is to provide bloggers around the world a designated and dedicated namespace that they can use to house their blogs.
A Nielsen⁄McKinsey study across a sample of 10 global markets revealed that social networks and blogs are the top online destination in each country, accounting for the majority of time spent online and reaching at least 60% of active Internet users (^1) . The integration of blogs with social media such as Facebook and Twitter has further increased blogging activity. As per this study, Americans spend close to 23% of their time online on social media and blog sites, more than twice the time spent on the #2 category in the list.
Not only is the time spent on viewing blogs high, the number of blogs being created is also on an uptrend. The number of blogs on the internet at the end of 2011 was pegged at 181 million representing a compounded annual growth rate of 37% from 2006 – 2011 (^2).
Blogging has evolved into a large part of the internet experience and has metamorphosized the way internet users express themselves online.
And yet, there doesn’t exist a dedicated namespace for blogs today. Existing TLD namespaces are saturated with 70% of the domain availability checks resulting in the name not being available (Internal .com checkavailability research). Bloggers are thus left with little choice but to pick sub-standard names instead of the ones that they would actually prefer. .Blog aims to plug this gap, and be the bloggers’ first choice TLD giving them a larger pool of names to choose from and allowing them to build their online presence at a URL that they can directly associate with.
We understand that many bloggers use free URLs provided by their blogging platforms⁄social networks. However, with the growth in the usage of blogs, both commercially and non-commercially, a TLD that clearly sets aside a URL as a blog will help bloggers distinguish their online identity from the myriad of domains in use, and certainly add value to the existing blogosphere.
An increasing number of organisations also maintain an active blog allowing them to interact with their stakeholders, customers etc. These organizations can also derive value from a designated TLD at which the can host their blogs, making it easier for their audience to locate and identify their corporate blog online. This benefits the end users as they will be able to locate blogs with ease e.g.: Visitors will not have to look for ‘companyname.tld⁄blog’ or ‘companynameblog.tld’; they can simply go to ‘companyname.blog’.
The motivation behind blogging ranges across a plethora of reasons – right from personal to professional to business motives. A study on why people blog (^3) shows that 61% blog in order to supplement their income, 53% of professional bloggers are primarily interested in attracting new clients via their blogs, while over 70% blog to speak their minds and share their expertise. Blogging has evolved into an interesting blend of commercial and non-commercial activity with many users looking for ways to create an online impression.
We give registrants the opportunity to make .Blog what they want. “A blog is a medium that lets you do anything, from sharing your shopping list to changing the world.” – Anonymous.
The .Blog Registry also aims to:
1.1 ENHANCE REGISTRANT CHOICE
To create a namespace that provides registrants greater choice to represent themselves online in the manner they please. Due to the saturated nature of the existing gTLD space, many Internet users have to opt for a name that does not suit their needs best. Our Registry will provide Registrants a higher probability of obtaining their desired name.
1.2. CREATE A CLEANER INTERNET SPACE:
We aim to create a cleaner internet experience for end users by implementing pioneering registration policies, content and usage policies, and abuse mitigation processes.
1.3. CREATE A STABLE AND RESILIENT INTERNET SPACE
The .Blog Registry aims to deliver a stable and resilient internet experience to registrants and end-users by going above and beyond the ICANN mandated SLAs and delivering 100% resolution uptime
(^1) Source: NielsenWire - http:⁄⁄blog.nielsen.com⁄nielsenwire⁄online_mobile⁄social-media-report-spending-time-money-and-going-mobile⁄
This completes our response to Q18(a).