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#1 Posted : 28 March 2017 10:54:54(UTC)

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DNS and browser technology was originally developed for ACSII Latin keyboard sets and it was not until 2003 that real support for Greek, Cyrilic and Oriental sets began to appear. With the full alphabet of some languages extending beyond 1800 characters it is easy to see reasons why a standard was developed early on the US systems that then had to be aded to later in order to supoort worldwide adoption of the Internet as a local tool. The tool in question converts from ASCII to other alpahbets and back again and so still has to confrm to the 63 character limit of DNS as well as other rules.

But what does a Chinese web user think of as a sensible suffix if their browser is displaying Chinese characters anyway? Surely we are all bidding for the same domain names? Well actually no - in 2010 ICANN standardised Chinese domain character suffixes including Russia and China and although China have only registered 200,000 or so thus far, the number is increasing daily. https://en.wikipedia.org...ry_code_top-level_domain

So does this mean that we cannot bid on Chinese domains? Well the CN domain extension is becoming more and more important to many in China as, although their language permits far easier trade inside of their country, China is now the world largest exporter and so CN domains are big business.

This leaves an interesting Gap. Because CN domains are really only understandable by those of us with a good appreciation of the Latin text, there is a great opportunity to buy up CN domains that the Chinese have not yet identified as being destined for greatness.
#2 Posted : 05 April 2017 08:33:42(UTC)

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China’s newest investment craze is short domain names
Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers, ICANN, President and Chief Executive Rod Beckstrom, left, and Kurt Pritz, Senior Vice President speaks on expanding the number of domain name suffixes during a press conference, London, Wednesday June 13, 2012. Proposals for Internet addresses ending in ".pizza," ''.space" and ".auto" are among the nearly 2,000 submitted as part of the largest expansion in the online address system. Apple Inc., Sony Corp. and American Express Co. are among companies seeking names with their brands. The expansion will allow suffixes that represent hobbies, ethnic groups, corporate brand names and more. The Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers announced the proposals for Internet suffixes — the ".com" part of an Internet address — in London on Wednesday. Among the 1,930 proposals for 1,409 different suffixes, the bulk came from North America and Europe.

Thanks to an e-commerce boom in China, thousands of investors like Wu are rushing to snap up “short” domain names, ones with five or less letters or numbers, and pushing up the value of domain names around the world in the process.
Chinese buyers accounted for nearly 75% of all global short domain name purchases in 2015, according to the latest 2015 Year-to-Date Top 100 Sales Chart provided by DNJournal and WHOIS data provided by DomainIQ (paywall), and 48% of the top 100 sales.
This data may even underestimate their involvement, as many high-end domain name sales are never reported publicly, or involve private buyers. For example, the most expensive domain name sale this year, porno.com, involved a private buyer—one who the purchase price of $8,888,888 indicates was probably Chinese (eight is a favorite number in Chinese culture because it represents “making a fortune” ).
“China has become the largest buyer of short dot-com domain names, without a doubt,” Alan Dunn, the managing director of NameCorp, a Delray Beach, Florida-based digital naming agency, told Quartz via email. And Chinese buyers are amassing a growing percentage of the global internet’s short domain names, other experts say:

Most Chinese buyers aren’t snapping these up to start their own online companies, they’re buying them to sell for a higher price.

A recent auction in Shenzhen showed how hot names are right now. On Dec. 19th’s “Domain Day of China,” the first-ever Chinese Domain Festival and China Digital Asset Investment Summit, a crowd of over 200 Chinese investors spent 154.49 million yuan ($24.1 million) to snap up domain names like house.com.

An entire cottage industry of brokers, auction houses, and domain name valuation websites has sprung up to cater to these investors that controls the industry. “Most large deals are done via agencies,” said Chen Xuedan, the chairman of 190.com, a digital asset company that co-sponsored the Shenzhen auction; some Chinese investors have found that short holding times can yield big profits.

As anyone who remembers the US tech bubble of the 1990s can tell you, domain name investing has existed for years. “Even before the influx of Chinese investment, there was an established wholesale market for buying and selling domain names,” Dunn said.
But these new Chinese buyers have very specific appetites for domain names, Mimayi’s Zhang explained, with a preference for initial consonants and short, numeric names.
Two-, three-, and four-number domain names that do not include a “0” or “4” are the most popular, he said, “because ‘0’ looks like ‘O’, because zero looks like the English letter O and might be confusing, and ‘four’ in Chinese pronunciation sounds like ‘death.’ ” The number eight is especially popular for gambling websites, because of its association with making money.
As for English-sounding web names, most of the alphabet, except vowels and the letter “v,” are popular, and short is best. Jingdong, a famous Chinese e-commerce platform, changed its domain name from 360buy.com to JD.com (JD is short for Jingdong in Chinese Pinyin spelling).
As Chinese investors and the agencies that cater to them have rushed into the market, finding good names has become more difficult, Dunn said. “Many domains listed on one venue may never show up on others,” he said, and some domain names are only available to subscribers or customers of brokerage houses.
Looking for the big payout

As e-commerce booms in China, companies are paying millions to buy the right domain name—and some investors are hitting the jackpot. Earlier this year, Qihoo 360, an internet security company, spent 110 million yuan ($17 million) to purchase “360.com,” by far the highest price paid for a domain name in China this year.
Within the past four years, there have been several other multi-million dollar deals in China:

After pouring money into real estate, stocks, and a host of less orthodox investments, there are warning signs that Chinese investors jump into domain names may be causing another bubble.
First of all, the number of registered names is growing incredibly fast. At the recent “2nd World Internet Conference“ held in Wuzhen, China, the China Internet Network Information Center (CNNIC) reported that the registered numbers of .CN (link in Chinese) domain names has hit 12.25 million, a year-on-year growth of 200%.

And because the domain name market is not regulated by any official government, there’s no oversight whatsoever. “For most domain names the only key regulation is that you must provide accurate WHOIS information and verify an email address,” Dunn told Quartz. Regulators aren’t paying attention because domain name investment is “still only a small fraction of the financial ecosystem,” he said.
The purchase of domain names is not public, which means many are high-end sales are done without open records of the purchase prices, and handled in private auctions or even over messaging service Wechat. Over the last year, “great domains like HongKong.com, Taiwan.com, DD.com and others” have changed hands, Dunn point out, but no one knows the details of the sales.
Investors in the industry have to rely on agents and brokers instead for information, who are making money off of domain name sales and are incentivized to make the market look at lucrative as possible.
Zhang, Dunn, and others in the business compare domain names to antiques, because they are one of a kind assets that can’t be reproduced. But to sell them at a profit, someone else has to want them. As a domain investor himself, Zhang said he lost thousands of yuan early on, because no one wanted to buy the names he had.
Whether the market is a bubble is “certainly a fair question,” Dunn said. “Very few assets ever have a chart that just shows an upward motion.”
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