A generic top-level domain (gTLD) is the last part of a domain name that usually consists of three or more letters. There were originally six gTLD namely . edu . org . com . gov . net and . mil. Among these, . com is the most widely used. This can be attributed to the timing when . com use became unrestricted and when the internet gained popularity. The use of . com was primarily intended for commercial units or bodies. The . edu gTLD on the other hand was implemented for the use of any educational institutions.Presently, the .edu gTLD is now restricted to post secondary institutions only. A gTLD was also implemented for organizations that are not covered by other gTLDs. Back then the . org gTLD was restricted, but now anybody can freely register a . org domain. Lastly, the . gov gTLD was put into operation for the exclusive use of the US government. This gTLD is regulated and operated by the US General Services Administration. Today, any institution around the world that has proper authorization can use a particular gTLD in conjunction with a country code top-level domain (ccTLD).
ccTLDs are only two letters long and specific to a certain country. It is now common to see domain names ending with . edu. uk, . gov. jp and . com. tw. Knowing the background of four of the most popular gTLDs, one can now expect what a website offers based only on its domain name. For example, the site www. mit. edu will probably offer information about a certain educational institution with an acronym of MIT. Upon visiting this site, one will find information about one of the best if not the best engineering school worldwide, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.
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www. fbi. gov will probably be the site of a particular department or bureau of the government. Looking it up on the internet, fbi. gov is actually the official site of the United State’s main investigation bureau. At first, the site unicef. org will probably be a site of a certain organization. Entering this site, one will be enlightened to see that unicef. org is about UNICEF, the arm of the United Nations that looks after the welfare of children worldwide.
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