Press release Brussels, 28 October 2016.
The operators of geographic top-level domains such as .nyc, .london, .berlin and .tokyo have founded an international non-for-profit association in Brussels.
The GeoTLD Group [AISBL] aims to promote geographic top-level domains, ensuring they become essential components of the digital infrastructure, benefiting stakeholders of a location, language or culture. Geographic top-level domains are here to foster information, communication, growth, wealth and prosperity at community-level, and the GeoTLD Group is there to support them. Along the above mentioned, the GeoTLD Group counts as its initial members: Amsterdam, Cape Town, Paris, Sydney, Vienna and other worldwide cities and regions.
For over 30 years cities and regions have had to peg their digital identities to their respective countries top-level domains or international ones. Brussels, for instance, communicated online as www.visitbrussels.be, owing its identity to the .be country extension. Today cities and regions may own their geographic extensions such as a .brussels, or .alsace; and so can cultural communities and languages such as .gal for Galician, offering the opportunity for a creative next steps in place branding, local e-government and the Internet of Things (IoT). With its own top-level domain, the City of Brussels is now of course using www.visit.brussels for its branding, locally and internationally.
“With the new geographic TLDs, we enter into an age where local communities have their own slice of the Internet. The new digital identities have been well accepted by Internet users and are increasingly used by everyone locally – from governments and local companies, to individuals.” says the GeoTLD Group’s Chairman Sébastien Ducos, “With an international association we are now able to connect and promote the interests of our members and engage the different stakeholders locally, nationally and internationally.”
The GeoTLD Group also aims to make more cities, regions and communities aware of the advantages of their own local Internet identity. The experience and best practice of the association and its members will help interested parties promote its benefits and speed access to their slice of the Internet.