.design, .wiki Approved by MIIT of China

On January 23rd, Top Level Design’s .design and .wiki top-level domains (TLDs) received the official approval by China’s Ministry of Industry and Information Technology (MIIT).

This follows on about the one year anniversary of MIIT’s approval of Top Level Design’s .ink. In the intervening year, .ink has found an interested and growing market, especially at registrars like Alibaba’s HiChina and Chengdu West. In China, .ink is often interpreted as “INternet King.”

The Chinese government requires all TLDs to be certified by MIIT. Once approved, Chinese residents can register domains in the TLD and host domains in mainland China. As of January 23rd, all of Top Level Design’s TLDs have been officially approved in mainland China.

The .design TLD has great potential in the Chinese market. The word design is internationally associated with smart and luxury products, which certainly have large and increasing cultural appeal in China. Good design, associated with companies like Apple, are sought after and China is experiencing rising interest in thoughtful and well-designed products, web services, apps, and more.

Furthermore, the .design premium model means domains like luxury.design and jewelry.design will soon be available on a first-come first-served basis via the registrar channel. This model has been hugely successful elsewhere, with over 20% of .design’s premium inventory registered in the first two years of operation. In fact, .design was on sale in China before current regulations required the approval process and during that time it was selling well, especially premium names, short domains, and potentially valuable names that were not designated as premium.

One of the most trafficked .design sites is ant.design, of Ant Financial, which is a part of the Alibaba Group and the most valuable fintech company in the world (formerly known as Alipay). The ant.design site is in both Mandarin and English and is a dynamic resource that lays out the design language used across Ant and Alibaba brands.

The .wiki TLD will be buoyed by the international association between wiki and authoritative information, such as that found on one of the world’s most trafficked site, Wikipedia.org. Current, popular .wiki sites in Asia and China include a Korean Wikipedia style project namu.wiki, and the Chinese byr.wiki search engine. In both cases we see the sites being used as knowledge resources. Wiki sites are generally associated with wiki software, allowing for collaborative editing, but it is not a requirement of .wiki. There is interesting potential for the .wiki TLD in the large, Chinese market that does not readily use Wikipedia but is aware of its influence.

Top Level Design’s CEO, Ray King, welcomed the news, “We have been working diligently since MIIT regulations were put in place to deliver our TLDs to the Chinese market. During this time we heard repeatedly from end users in China that our domains are wanted there. We’re excited to finally deliver, and our team in both China and the U.S. are ready to serve our current and new Chinese users. This is an especially auspicious way to prepare for the year of the dog!”

Availability for .design and .wiki is forthcoming at China’s major registrars and implementation is already underway at many; current registrar partners can be found here. New registrar partners, business interests, and domain buyers can reach out to Top Level Design’s Chinese Market Coordinator, Kimberly Sheng (in Chinese or English).  

Introducing Slack.design and Opentable.design

Introducing Slack.design and Opentable.design

I’ve previously written about major brands combining .design domains with their Medium publications to create stand alone sites focused on their internal design processes. This is perhaps the easiest and most professional way to create a design blog that builds the breadth and personality of a brand rather than just glom on an existing .com site.

We’ve already seen this on npr.design, booking.design and medium.design itself. These sites function as designer recruiting and content channels much like uber.design and facebook.design but are not built with the same intensive web design and presentation work. All they require is a Medium publication, a .design domain name, and a onetime fee to Medium to connect the two.

The new sites we’ve recently come across are opentable.design and slack.design.

Dropbox Unveils Its New Brand Design On Dropbox.design

Dropbox Unveils Its New Brand Design On Dropbox.design

Yesterday, Dropbox unveiled its new brand design on dropbox.design. It’s the biggest change to the Dropbox brand in its 10-year history, and the shift is dramatic. The accompanying .design site gave them a platform to fully present the change and explain the strategic reasons and aesthetic choices behind the relaunch.

Instead of their flagship blue box logo, Dropbox is trying out a whole new range of colors which change depending on which part of the page the user has scrolled to. They explain how this array of color options allows them to keep the normal, recognized blue dropbox logo for when people are using their product, and employ other colors for other occasions.

Uber.design Site, Personalizing Their Design Department

Uber.design Site, Personalizing Their Design Department

We might as well start with the elephant in the ride-share, Uber has had no shortage of PR issues recently. I do not know exactly when Uber launched the site uber.design to showcase various aspects of its design work and team but I found it during the last bout of negative headlines.

Maybe it was launched to personalize a team that has felt under siege, to showcase the things they’re doing right and the diverse group of people that contribute to their enviable and unmatched growth! If it wasn’t launched for this purpose, it’s hard to not see it in this light now.