Moscow Joins Growing List of gTLD Applicants

The Russian capital of Moscow has joined the growing list of likely applicants for a new generic Top Level Domain (gTLD) when ICANN begins taking applications, most likely sometime in 2011.The idea, initiated by the successful Russian registrar RU-CENTER, has gained popular support among Russians with the popular Russian newspaper Moskovskiy Komsomolets conducting an online survey to which more than 7,900 people or 53.3 per cent of respondents saying they supported the idea of a .MOSCOW and .МОСКВА gTLD, the remainder ( about 6,900) being opposed.”In the autumn 2010 there will be some public consultations regarding the idea of .MOSCOW and .МОСКВА implementation. Such discussions will be organised during the main IT Russian events. We hope the community will actively participate in this project and help to develop it,” said Andrey Vorobiev, the head of external relations and communications at RU-CENTER.According to the comments of those supporting the gTLD’s introduction, Moscow is one of the biggest cities in the world and it is quite reasonable to create a TLD for the Russian capital. Also users who voted for .MOSCOW and .МОСКВА are sure that the TLDs will help to identify Moscow on the internet.Most of those who voted against the idea of the TLD’s implementation consider that Moscow has a unique exclusive status among other Russian cities and it is wrong to give other privileges to the capital by the creation of its own part in DNS. There is also a fear that .MOSCOW and .МОСКВА are able to damage the global principals of the internet. Finally, there is an opinion that there are enough TLDs and introduction of more will confuse users.However Vorobiev believes the introduction of the two gTLDs could kick start other Russian cities into applying for their own city gTLDs.”.MOSCOW and .МОСКВА introduction might be a good start for the implementation of TLDs intended for other Russian cities,” said Vorobiev. “And in this case Moscow has no exclusive status. It’s just the first Russian city among others that will apply for its own TLDs. And Moscow is the first because it is well-known abroad, it is one of the biggest cities in the world and is popular with travellers. Finally Moscow is Russian leader in internet-technologies’ development.””Designation for the TLDs intended for Russian capital is quite deliberate. During the poll some people wondered why not to use the string .MSK as a top-level domain for Moscow. Though abbreviation MSK is quite widespread in Russia, it is not well-known abroad. That’s why .MOSCOW is the best choice. Of course this designation is longer than .MSK, but in the long run it’s quite simple in spelling and pronouncement, so there will be no problems with usage of it”.More information on the .MOSCOW and .МОСКВА initiative is available from