Saturday, June 28, 2008

Everyone knows 90210

We can remember zip codes like 90210. We can remember the phone numbers of the eight (or so) people that we allow to reach us via voice at any time. Why do we need domain names?

There are probably less than 5 IP addresses any of us need to remember and for the rest we have bookmarks. Jeff Jarvis makes the point, and much more eloquently, that I was making the other day on the new Icann domain name scam: The online name game:

Who could win in this? Who always wins these days – Google, of course. I know many people who never bother to type in internet addresses; they find it quicker to just enter a Google search and click from there. All roads lead from Google.

The bottom-line is that you don't need a domain name to be found by a Google search. You can make up any crazy name you want, do a little SEO magic around that made up name, and Google will take care of the rest. No domain name is required.

Maybe it's time to retire the whole concept of DNS.


Anonymous said...

There's actually a technical gotcha to this proposal. Under IPv4, it became apparent that the IP address space was in danger of running out, so it is possible to map multiple domains to a single IP. In fact, it's done all the time. Hosting services charge an extra "rent" for having your own private IP address.

There's also a point about domain name contributing to brand recognition and building outside of any Internet context.

The point is well taken that most people will arrive at your content via search, that is, if your site is search accessible. Many features of academic sites are not, for instance all content barricaded behind learning management systems.

Kevin Gamble said...

I have to admit that I haven't looked at the status of IPv6 in over four years. (Since I stopped working in networking stuff.) Thanks for the clarification. I think I need to do do some more reading. I'm feeling out of touch.

Anonymous said...

IPv6 is meant to solve the issue of IP addresses, but it only has low adoption to date.

DairyScienceMark said...

The data about Google usage (almost all searches resulting in one click from near the top of the results) is from people you describe in your post as "they find it quicker to just enter a Google search and click from there."

As the saying that's attributed to Curly of the Three Stooges goes, 'I resemble that remark.'

Kevin Gamble said...


True, and that is almost everyone these days.


Anonymous said...

I find myself sending people Google search URLs instead of the company's URL because I want them to also be aware of the related content Google has found. In those cases though, I'm looking for more than one click from a search result.