• Economic Development

last modified June 3, 2014 by tomlowenhaupt

The .nyc TLD offers benefits to tourism , small businesses, entrepreneurs, and global corporations with a presence in the city. By creating a more connected city it will facilitate innovation and enable New Yorkers to create and sell their services and products to one another and the world.


(Commons photo courtesy of onthespiral.) 

Proximity and Networking 

The ability to effectively connect people, ideas, products, and resources is the basis for New York's existence and its economic success. Our role in the global economy depends on a social informality and a local web of specialized and supporting human infrastructure. (See Cities & Networking below.)

These proximity and networking features, once key city advantages, were diminished by the distance-insensitive Internet and the globalizing .com TLD. With the Internet's arrival in the mid1990's, commerce and ideas flowed globally at the blink of an eye, making local resources seem quaint and unnecessary: Why consult the parish priest when you can instantly connect with the Vatican?

Repairing the .com's globalization impacts provides rich but difficult opportunities for the .nyc TLD. We will explore the possibility that a geographically aware TLD, with mobility intimate, will enable New Yorkers to efficiently locate and acquire local resources, helping to rekindle the city's traditional proximity advantages. And we will explore how improved networking can facilitate civic awareness and pride, raising consciousness about resident's role in making New York a visitor-friendly city. See the Development Environment and GIS and city-TLDs for more on these opportunities. 

Cities & Networking

"Complex cities allow for this multiplication and diversifying in a way that neat suburbs do not. While at one end of the scale informality is a form of injustice and powerlessness, at the other end it enables actors to ‘make’ new economies – and is a form of survival but also of creativity. Many immigrant entrepreneurs start informally, because it allows a more experimental form of business we might say. Many Silicon Valley tycoons started informally in garages. But we also saw informal architectural practices in all our Urban Age cities – from Mexico to Berlin."

Krischenowski on Search Engines 
& City-TLDs

Dirk Krischenowski, CEO of .berlin, after discussing the impact city-TLDs would have on search engines with industry executives, reported: “I had talks with Google and Yahoo CEOs on how the .berlin domain would be handled. They said that search requests which include 'berlin' will present domains which have .berlin as their TLD much higher.”

They also indicated that if a short domain like office.berlin is among the top search results, the search engine will perceive this as a good - "clearly identifiable and trustable search result.”

­Buy & Build Local

Writing for the American Independent Business Alliance, Jeff Milchen wrote on the multiplier effect of local independent business ownership and "buy local" public education campaigns.

The multiplier effect is the boost the local economy receives from locally-owned independent businesses, owners, and employees spending business revenue within the region.

In Cities and the Wealth of Nations Jane Jacobs detailed the economic development advantages that arise from building local.

The impact of .nyc on our city's economy depends on the thoughtfulness and care that goes into its planning and development.


We view the .nyc TLD as digital infrastructure upon which New York City will build its future. Some advantages will arrive early while others will require creativity and time to achieve.

The Low Hanging Fruit

The .nyc TLD will provide several immediate advantages and set the foundation for future growth. Some early advantages:

  • Good Domain Names - Short, descriptive, and memorable domain names will be available for the city's businesses. With 100,000,000 .com names issued, locating a good name - one that is short, descriptive, and memorable - for a new business is near-impossible.

  • A More Intuitive & Navigable City - Many local businesses will have the opportunity to reclaim their traditional and familiar names within the .nyc TLD. And residents will learn to trust their intuition, able to  thumb pizzaboy.nyc into their cell phone, making it a friendlier, more navigable city.
  • Better Business Environment - Our more organized and intuitive city will make it more livable, creating a better business environment with current businesses staying and others contemplating a move here.
  • Identity - A .nyc domain name says "Made in New York" and "From New York." And it advertises the city with every email, blog post, and web page - billions of free ads per year.
  • Small Business Benefits - The new set of domain names will reduce the time consuming task of locating a good domain name, provide identity, and promote "findability" through the intuitive names and Search Engine Optimization, helping city businesses rise to the top of Google search results. (See Advantaged Search Engine Positioning below.)

  • Marketing Efficiencies - A Google search for "New York City Hotels" returns more than 1,000,000 results for the city's 402 hotels. Imagine the marketing efficiencies of an inclusive hotels.nyc.
  • Tourism Boost - The city can better market itself globally by organizing its resources for presentation on .nyc's more intuitive Internet. With domain names like hotels.nyc and tours.nyc developed to assist visitors, the city can better present itself on a global scale.
  • Billions of Free Ads for New York City - With every email sent, every blog post, or web page accessed using a .nyc name, people will be reminded of our great city, and dream of their next visit.
  • Big Business Benefits - Firms like Chase, Citibank, and Coke have invested millions in their domain names and will not switch wholecloth to .nyc. However, those with a city presence will choose a local TLD for more focused communication. For example, Coke might select coke.nyc to let residents know of their local jobs, distributors, concerts, and community events they sponsor.
  • Homegrown Internet - With the creation of a local registrar business, Internet domain name revenue will remain in the city. TLD exploration sites - search.nyc, index.nyc, etc. - will enable advertising revenue to remain in the city.

Advantage New York

  • Advantaged Search Engine Positions - Using a .nyc name will assist with search engine optimization, helping businesses using .nyc names rise to the top of Google search results. Local businesses will discover that, when people enter a search for a New York resource, search engines will place those using the .nyc TLD higher in listings than those under the .com TLD, making them easier to find and avoiding some .com competitors. For example, a search for "east side bakery in Manhattan" will show eastsidebakery.nyc higher in Google’s listing than www.eastsidebakery.com.
  • Trusted TLD - In contrast to standard TLDs like .com, .net, and .org, we will establish eligibility criteria for those seeking a .nyc domain and provide ongoing oversight. Eligibility for a .nyc domain name will require a city nexus. (See the Nexus Policy page for more.) It has been suggested that we adopt requirements similar to Singapore, where a local postal address is required to purchase a .sg TLD. A trusted TLD requires an oversight structure that assures the public that websites operating under the .nyc umbrella are accountable. For inspiration we think of the comfort one feels within a more managed TLD like .gov or .edu. We will offer an advantage over the standard TLDs in this regard. We'll not be FDIC secure, but more trusted than a .com name. Providing trust and accountability starts with devising an effective governance process, composed of ex-officio seats for representatives of respected city institutions (city government, libraries, tourist bureau, chamber of commerce…), and representatives of civic organizations, users, and the Internet community.
  • Local “Trademark” - Another search benefit of .nyc will arise with increased availability of local names, or what might be called local trademarks. Trademarks were traditionally local in scope. And there are thousands of local businesses - bakeries, copy shops, delis, hair cutters etc. - which use generic business identifiers like Star, Blue, York, Cook, Magic, Link, Finest, Sun etc. The .nyc TLD will provide local identity for companies using the same name used in other cities. thus while Chicago's Fresh Bakery may use freshbakery.com and Toronto has freshbakery.biz, New York will have a freshbakery.nyc. With .nyc we can reclaim and return to traditions and quality, as judged by local residents.

Slow Ripening Fruits

  • Identity, Trust, Community, Justice and Civic Pride - Good domain names for new ideas and local causes will become available. A planned TLD, networked proximity, and an intuitive Internet will enable residents to more easily locate and network with one another. If neighbors can locate one another, discuss issues, and collaborate within a realm of informed decision making, the prospects for a just society brighten. A just society promotes stability and economic vitality.

  • Strengthened Public-Private Partnerships - Good local networking will facilitate strong local governance and help sustain the public part of the "public-private partnerships" that seem to dominate global thinking. Local communication in New York City has always been difficult and the globalizing TLDs like .com and .org has made it even more so. A key goal of the .nyc TLD will be to provide new venues for local civic discourse where residents can more easily locate and network with one another within an organized and managed .nyc top level domain.

  • Meeting Global Competition - New York City will be better able to serve as a corporate headquarters city with competitors like Singapore (.sg) and Hong Kong (.hk) which already have TLDs.

  • An Intuitive Internet - When the Commissioners Plan of 1811 created Manhattan’s street grid, it organized and provided ready access to the city’s real estate resources to great economic gain. Imagine .nyc as a digital parallel to the city’s street grid, organizing and facilitating access to the city’s Internet resources. The .nyc directory and Intuitive names will provide this 1811-benefit.

  • Portal Businesses - Directory-type portal pages with names like schools.nyc, hotels.nyc, and parks.nyc, will be set aside as search aids and facilitate the creation of a more navigable city. The number of portal pages and the qualifications and responsibilities of their developers - yellow page operator, an industry group, or small businesses - needs to be decided. Editorial and advertising content will also be found on directory pages, with advertising revenue shared between the page maintainer and .nyc. Creating these pages and advertising sales will create local jobs. A Portal Page Management discussion addresses the how, how many, and who of portal pages. 
  • Advertising Revenue Control and Retention - Local advertising revenue can stay in our communities as channels such as the dotNeighborhoods - Astoria.nyc, GreenwichVillage.nyc, Harlem.nyc - are effectively developed.
  • Internet Training & Access - Funds raised through name sales and other revenue opportunities will be invested in Internet access, training, education, and creating networking applications, all basic to a strong local economy. Some of this training should prepare residents for those import-replacement businesses mentioned above.
  • Regional Consolidation - Immense inefficiencies from overlapping governance systems reduce the competitive position of the New York region. The .nyc TLD can be used to facilitate regional consolidation and a reduction of these barriers to efficient commerce.
  • General Fund Revenue Contributions - Revenue in excess of operations and digital empowerment efforts will be contributed to the city's general fund. 

Key .nyc Pages