include unique websites as well as those of speculators and traffic aggregators. There also appears to be a
significant proportion of names that are either used for purposes other than the World Wide Web
e mail), defensive registrations or those that are simply not used.
Cyveillance undertakes surveys by crawling more than 40 million registered domain names to
determine the proportion that are in use on the World Wide Web. The survey splits the results into three
categories of domain names. Where a registered domain is an accessible site, with unique content, they are
counted as live domains. Parked domains consist of a placeholder page usually provided by a registrar
while domains that generate an error message are counted under a third category. In March 2003 the
traditional domains (
) recorded the highest proportion of live domains (Table 15).
had significantly more parked pages. The latter two domains also had a higher
proportion of redirects to sites under other domain names.
Table 15. Registered domains in use, (March 2003)
Proportion of live domains which redirect to
other sites (%) (October 2003)
54.1 11.8 34.1
39.8 19.5 40.6
ccTLDs 39.2 8.4
36.6 19.7 43.6
: Cyveillance (www.cyveillance.com).
One further consideration in respect to the geographical location of registration deserves to be noted.
New gTLDs, as has been discussed earlier, are more popular in some countries than others. Where this is
the result of a new service associated with that gTLD, such as with international domain names, there is
clearly a benefit produced by meeting previously unmet demand. In these cases if business users need to
register names under new domains the benefits may well outweigh the costs, in terms of reaching new
markets or better serving customers. At the same time additional domains may allow separate businesses
with equally valid claims to a particular name to register names. This latter point can be related to
geography in that business users in some countries may have joined the Internet well in advance of
businesses in another country. Afilias, for example, report that the largest share of registrations under
are made from Europe. As other countries develop greater Internet access, and new international domain
name character recognition further develops, increasing demand for new gTLDs might be expected.