Tomorrow, a new top-level domain just for .ME

Those interested in getting a .ME domain name -- perhaps one named just for themselves -- can do so after ICANN, the organization responsible for overseeing Internet domains, opens up .ME domain registration tomorrow.

The "Sunrise" period of registration for .ME domains began in May, where trademark owners were permitted to register their own names early. The "Landrush" period began in June, in which any interested party can submit a domain application without restrictions.

According to the .ME Registry, more than 30,000 domains have been registered, and auctions for domains with multiple bids are now taking place. Successfully completed open registrations will enable domain owners to launch their .ME Web sites immediately after registration opens publicly tomorrow.

Auctions are expected for domains that will likely be considered high value, with Love.Me, Buy.Me, Contact.ME, Drive.ME, and Date.me, and other verbs you can conceivably do to ".me," at the top of the list.

The open registration period makes it possible for anyone to get any domain name on a first-come, first-served basis.

The Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers had a busy year in 2008, opening up several new top-level domains and drastically altering the rules for introducing new Top-Level Domains (TLDs). The most popular generic TLDs today are .COM, .ORG, .NET, and to a lesser extent .BIZ, though a rule change initiated last month could complicate things drastically.

Companies and interested parties will be able to create their own gTLD depending on what their needs are - for example, japan.yahoo in place of yahoo.co.jp. The rules restriction could open up more than 70 million possible new domains operating under the .COM gTLD.

Also with the rule changes, ICANN also made it possible for Chinese corporations to create a domain that ends with Chinese ideograms instead of .CN.

Earlier in the year, ICANN eased restrictions on the .PRO TLD. Interested parties now only have to fill out an online registration form that has a company's name, profession, and a qualifying license number.

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