Indigenous Domain Names

The term Indigenous Domain Name is an unofficial coined term that should not be confused with the official terminology from the Internet Corporation of Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) of Geographic Domain Name – GeoTLD. GeoTLD is described as a Top Level Domain that identifies a: Cultural, linguistic, ethnic, geopolitical group. .scot is one such example.

I believe that the ICANN community need to re classify domain names into a further category as Cultural and Indigenous have two very different meanings and Indigenous is not geographic based to one geographic location.

The ICANN board have since its inception been wanting of Indigenous representation and knowledge, as was seen with the issues relating to Native Sovereign Nations in their struggle to be recognised as an independent nation and the lack of Indigenous considerations with the New GTLD process.

iwi.nz, maori.nz and māori.nz are three of the world’s nine indigenous domain names. Another two are nsn.us and -nsn.gov for Native Sovereign Nations in America (excludes Mexico and Canada). The creation of these 5 domain names are unique as there was no independent process for the Indigenous Peoples to follow. Their creation was dependent on the government and governing body of the Internet in their country.

The other 4 Indigenous domain names are .cat (Catlan Peoples) .eus (Basque Peoples), .gal ( Galician Peoples) and .bzh (Breton Peoples). These names were created using a process from the worlds international and independent internet governing body the Internet Corporation of Assigned Names and Numbers ICANN using a transparent process of the New GTLD program or as a Sponsored Domain. Both processes require paying a large fee to ICANN.

A country and a sovereign nation (not Native Indian sovereign nations) are automatically assigned a name in the Domain Name System. This is what differentiates a country who still has its Indigenous Peoples as the majority and in government such as Samoa, Tonga etc., there is no need for their people to apply or lobby for their right to be represented on the Internet.

 

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