At the end of last year, Nominet announced plans to launch .uk domain names – a suggestion which received a mixed response. Now, after a recent consultation process and modification of some of the more controversial points in the original proposal, the discussion is back on the table, but there is still debate over whether the .uk domain will offer any discernible benefit to businesses.
Nominet justifies the decision, saying: “We believe that a new secure product will create a new, trusted online home for British businesses. We hope it will help the internet economy by combating cybercrime and creating a namespace which consumers trust.” They say that the domains will be priced competitively, at around £5.50, and will give businesses a reputable, secure address that their customers can depend upon.
However, critics of the proposal say that the current co.uk scheme needs little modification – security standards could easily be streamlined and brought up to date, and the running of co.uk and .uk domains alongside one another could ultimately cause more confusion than consistency.
The final decision on the .uk domain will be made on 23rd September, but UK businesses will need to consider their stance carefully. If the .uk domain does become a reality, our tip is to purchase ‘www.[yourbusinessname].uk and redirect it to your .co.uk or .com site – that way you have the option of doing something with it later if the .uk domain does take off, and you’ve protected yourself against somebody else registering it.