• Domain Name Allocation Plan

last modified March 3, 2014 by tomlowenhaupt

­­­­­­The number of domain names available within the .nyc TLD is essentially limitless. To efficiently and equitably distribute these names we must create a methodology for identifying, reserving, allocating, and recycling domain names important to the city's future. Here we recommend policies and processes for setting aside names to facilitate the TLDs operation and navigation.

­ ­­ ­­Good Names for a Great City



(Commons photo courtesy streetart.)

How Many .nyc Names?

A most difficult question to resolve is how many domain names will be issued under the .nyc TLD. The answer to this is vital for planning purposes. Here's some background. 

      • We are primarily interested with second level domains. For example, in www.fourth.third.second.nyc our concern is primarily with the names in the "second" position.
      • The number of second level domain names available through the .nyc TLD is virtually limitless - 38 valid characters in each of 68 positions, thus 38x38...68 times.
      • In all or most instances, there will be an annual fee for second level domain names.
      • Under a typical ICANN contract we will be required to pay a fee of approximately $.25 for each such name issued per year.
      • With our desire for a city nexus requirement, we might make our high-end estimates based on the current population of 8,200,000 and 240,000 businesses registered. 
So while we won't run out of names any time soon, "Good Names" is another issue. Short., descriptive, and memorable names will always be in demand. See Sustainable City-TLDs.

First Draft: ­­City of New York 
­­­­­­Reserved Names

In an October 5, 2009 Request for Proposals for a contractor to assist with the acquisition and development of the .nyc TLD, DoITT (the city's IT agency) issued the following 200+ "PRELIMINARY LIST OF RESERVED SECOND-LEVEL DOMAINS" along with an invitation to prospective contractors to submit others. ­

­ ­­ ­ ­­

­• 211.n­yc

• 212.nyc

• 311.nyc

• 311online.nyc

• 347.nyc

• 646.nyc

• 718.nyc

• 911.nyc

• 917.nyc

• access.nyc

• accessnyc.nyc

• acco.nyc

• administrativecode.nyc

• airquality.nyc

• alert.nyc

• alertnyc.nyc

• antidiscrimination.nyc

• antiterrorism.nyc

• antiviolence.nyc

• benefits.nyc

• bigapple.nyc

• bigevents.nyc

• borough.nyc

• boroughs.nyc

• bronx.nyc

• brooklyn.nyc

• budget.nyc

• buildings.nyc

• bus.nyc

• buses.nyc

• business.nyc

• businesses.nyc

• businessexpress.nyc

• call.nyc

• call211.nyc

• call311.nyc

• call911.nyc

• census.nyc

• charter.nyc

• citizens.nyc

• city.nyc

• citycharter.nyc

• citycouncil.nyc

• citygov.nyc

• citygovernment.nyc

• cityhall.nyc

• cityofnewyork.nyc

• citythatneversleeps.nyc

• civilcourt.nyc

• commissioners.nyc

• communityboards.nyc and all individual community boards, eg, communityboard1.nyc,


• concessions.nyc

• cops.nyc

• council.nyc

• councilmembers.nyc

• courts.nyc

• data.nyc

• departments (newyorkpolicedepartment.nyc, departmentofsanitation.nyc), their acronyms (nypd.nyc)

dos.nyc) & subjects (police.nyc, sanitation.nyc)

• dial.nyc

• dial211.nyc

• dial311.nyc

• dial911.nyc

• discrimination.nyc

• districts.nyc and all individual districts, eg, 1stdistrict.nyc, 2nddistrict.nyc

• domesticabuse.nyc

• domesticviolence.nyc

• dot.nyc

• dtv.nyc

• economicdevelopment.nyc

• education.nyc

• elections.nyc

• emergency.nyc

• environment.nyc

• events.nyc

• familycourt.nyc

• fcrc.nyc

• finance.nyc

• firecommissioner.nyc

• firefighters.nyc

• five-digit numbers (zip codes)

• franchises.nyc

• go.nyc

• gonyc.nyc

• gov.nyc

• government.nyc

• green.nyc

• greenstreets.nyc

• greenyc.nyc

• health.nyc

• housingauthority.nyc

• housingdevelopment.nyc

• humanrights.nyc

• iheart.nyc

• iheartnewyork.nyc

• iheartny.nyc

• iheartnyc.nyc

• illegalguns.nyc

• ilove.nyc

• ilovenewyork.nyc

• iloveny.nyc

• ilovenyc.nyc

• info.nyc

• information.nyc

• infrastructure.nyc

• intermediateschools.nyc and all individual intermediate schools, eg, is1.nyc, is2.nyc, etc. (through three digits)­

• landlordtenantcourt.nyc

• laws.nyc

• licenses.nyc

• manhattan.nyc

• marketing.nyc

• mayor.nyc

• mayoral offices, eg, immigrantaffairs.nyc, intergovernmentalaffairs.nyc

• mayorsagainstillegalguns.nyc

• mayorsoffice.nyc

• mbwe.nyc

• medallions.nyc

• medianyc2020.nyc

• muni.nyc

• municipal.nyc

• munimeters.nyc

• narcotics.nyc

• neighborhoods.nyc and all individual neighborhoods, eg, tribeca.nyc, foresthills.nyc

• newyork.nyc

• newyorkcity.nyc

• newyorkcitygovernment.nyc

• newyorksboldest.nyc

• newyorksbravest.nyc

• newyorksfinest.nyc

• newyorksproudest.nyc

• newyorksstrongest.nyc

• newyorknewyork.nyc

• notify.nyc

• notifynyc.nyc

• ny.nyc

• nyc&company.nyc

• nyc.nyc

• nycandcompany.nyc

• nycbudget.nyc

• nycfeedback.nyc

• nycgo.nyc

• nycgov.nyc

• nycgovernment.nyc

• nycradio.nyc

• nycscout.nyc

• nycstat.nyc

• nyctv.nyc

• nycvisit.nyc

• oath.nyc

• one- and two-character names

• parks.nyc and all park names, eg, centralpark.nyc, cunninghampark.nyc

• payphones.nyc

• permits.nyc

• plan.nyc

• planyc.nyc

• planyc2030.nyc

• playgrounds.nyc and all playground names, eg, triassicplayground.nyc, utopiaplayground.nyc

• policecommissioner.nyc

• policeprecincts.nyc

• population.nyc

• precincts.nyc and all individual precincts, eg, 1stprecinct.nyc, 2ndprecinct.nyc

• procurement.nyc

• public.nyc

• publichealth.nyc

• publicprivatepartnerships.nyc

• publicsafety.nyc

• publicschools.nyc and all individual schools, eg, ps1.nyc, ps2.nyc, etc (through three digits)

• queens.nyc

• radionyc.nyc

• rcny.nyc

• readynewyork.nyc

• regulations.nyc

• residents.nyc

• rfp.nyc

• rooseveltislandtram.nyc

• rooseveltislandtramway.nyc

• rules.nyc

• safety.nyc

• schools.nyc

• scout.nyc

• speaker.nyc

• statenisland.nyc, si.nyc

• subway.nyc

• supremecourt.nyc

• taxi.nyc

• telephone numbers (seven- or ten-digit numbers with or without hyphens plus additional numbers for country codes and otherwise necessary numbers as appropriate)

• thebigapple.nyc

• thisis.nyc

• thisisnyc.nyc

• tourism.nyc

• train.nyc

• trains.nyc

• transit.nyc

• variances.nyc

• vendex.nyc

• violence.nyc

• weather.nyc

• wnye.nyc

• wnyefm.nyc

• wnyetv.nyc

• www.nyc

• ­yourcityyourneeds-

• ­yournumber.nyc

­• zoning.nyc

    Shift Day

    Recall February 2009 and the huge public awareness campaign surrounding the transition from the analog TV to the newer digital TV.

    The transition benefited from a hugely effective public awareness campaign run by the broadcast television industry. A similar day will arrive when we switch from the old .com to the .nyc Internet - Shift Day.
    Distribution Steps

    Through lessons learned from the introduction of the .biz, .info, .cat, .eu, and .asia TLDs, Intellectual Property activists have devised an order of distribution that serves to protect their interests. Perfect Sunrise details this view. 

    • Sunrise - The careful allocation of names to appropriate entities. This might be scheduled as follows:
      • Trademark
      • Transportation
      • Civic and Government Infrastructure
      • Small Businesses
    • Landrush - The period of first availability of names not allocated during sunrise.
    • General Availability - The routine availability of names as is the case today for a .com or .org name. It's first-come first-served. 
     Name Conflicts








    With ICANN's TLD assignment process having assured that .nyc will be issued to our city, time is now on the city's side. And with several global cities soon to begin operating their TLDs - Barcelona, Berlin, London, Paris - valuable experience will soon to arrive. Haste is our enemy.

    Deciding on a nexus policy and distribution process, identifying names that significantly impact the public interest,  and managing competitive name claims is a complex task.

    Serving The Public Interest

    Developing a Domain Name Allocation Plan that serves the long term interest of the New York City community entails difficult choices. Over the past 7 years Connecting.nyc Inc. researched the processes and experience of issuing names for the .com, .org, the .eu, .asia, .uk, .hk, and other TLDs. We studied the Name Space Reserves plan of CORE, and re-crafted it as a Cyber Land Use Plan for New York.

    To discern the broad public interest, we engaged with experts from a variety of fields, consulted with city officials, solicited the public's s view  through this wiki and face to face meetings. We learned from the thoughtful contributions of our board and Resident Advisory Network, and from our founder's participation on the .NYC Advisory Board. And we considered the experience gained from the community standards developed by the FCC. We continue to welcome views via this wiki and email.

    Name Categories 

    One of the challenging questions we've sought to address involves identifying civic and public interest domain names that should be reserved to benefit the public interest. Some individual names were obvious: gov.nyc, mayor.nyc, and council.nyc for government. And for the tourism industry, tours.nyc and hotels.nyc. For the general public names such as directory.nyc and index.nyc offered benefit.

    In terms of categories, we recommend that the commons of English words be divided into two categories, Primary Intuitive Names and Portal Names. Primary Intuitive Names should be auctioned with appropriate Public Interest Commitments that detail various content and function prescriptions. These auctions should provide adequate time for small investors to gather the requisite capital to develop informative and profitable ventures. Portal Names should be operated by several competitive domain name management firms that compete for names and locations (e.g., Brooklyn streets).

    Reserved Names

    There are several categories of reserved names.

    Required as per ICANN Contract

    As registrar for the .nyc TLD, the city will comport with ICANN recommendations on reserved names for technical and public policy reasons. The ICANN will require that the following second level names be reserved: 0, 1, 2, 3,4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, a, AFRINIC, APNIC, ARIN, ASO, b, c, ccNSO, d, e, Example, f, g, GNSO, gtld-servers, h, i, IAB, IANA, iana-servers, ICANN, IESG, IETF, Internic, IRTF, ISTF, j, k, l, LACNIC, LATNIC, m, n, NIC*, o, p, q, r, rfc-editor, RIPE, root-servers, s, t, test, u, v, w, Whois*, www*, x, y, z.. (The * names are reserved for use by registry operators only.)

    Reserved to Facilitate the Operation of the .nyc TLD
    One of the ways a thoughtfully developed city-TLD can differentiate itself from generic TLDs such as .com and .org is through the provision of several "meta" pages - domain names that group and organize domain names. These should have strong Public Interest Commitments and be auctioned to competitive entities.

    • index.nyc
    • portal.nyc
    • help.nyc
    • connecting.nyc
    Reserved for Intellectual Property Holders

    An ICANN mandated "Sunrise" period will provide existing global trademark holders with a 45 day opportunity to reserve names within the .nyc TLD. During this period International trademark holders, which have listed their trademark with a Trademark Clearing House, and with a NYC nexus, have the right to purchase names such as: siemens.nyc, hyatt.nyc, porsche.nyc, lufthansa.nyc, ebay.nyc, google.nyc, newyorkpost.nyc, ibm.nyc, and coke.nyc.

    Local Sunrise Period - Under current (January 2014) ICANN rules NYC based companies and organizations will not have the opportunity to reserve familiar names such as cuny.nyc, nypl.nyc, nyu.nyc, and queenscollege.nyc. Not will tens of thousands of small businesses that have NYS trademarks and d/b/a licenses. We urge the city to seek revision of criteria for city businesses.
      Reserved for the Future

      How do we reserve names for future generations? A vexing problem. Year names provide a good example of name set-asides: 2015.nyc, 2016.nyc, 2017.nyc, etc. What other names should be set aside for future use? See our Sustainable City-TLD page for a discussion on the possibilities.

      Held in Trust for Local New York City Government Units

      The .nyc TLD will facilitate the interaction and operation of city governance and service delivery between institutions, residents, community organizations, and businesses. Intuitive domain names like council.nyc, mayor.nyc, and police.nyc will make a city’s resources readily available and easier to locate. As well, city government can develop intuitive micro sites such as parkingregs.gov.nyc and cityholidays.gov.nyc.

      • gov.nyc - as redirect, mirror, or home for New York City's government website.

      • police.nyc

      • NYPD.nyc
      • fire.nyc
      • 911.nyc

      • council.nyc

      • mayor.nyc

      • copic.nyc

      • 311.nyc

      • 211.nyc

      • The cb##.borough.gov.nyc (currently used is cb##.borough.nyc.gov) series for the city's 59 community boards.

      On June 9, 2008, Connecting.nyc volunteers reached out to public employees through our "Names for a Livable City" effort. On June 29, 2009, speaking at the Personal Democracy Forum, Mayor Bloomberg suggested using data.nyc for the NYC Apps initiative. It sounds like the mayor has been reading our wiki.

      Name Categories

      Many .nyc names might be considered part of a commons, to be developed for the benefit of residents. (What of commons.nyc?)

      Business Improvement Districts

      Business Improvement Districts provide local property owners and merchants with the power to manage their environment through a form of local taxation. Good domain names can help their operation. Options must be provided to enable these entities to choose marketing oriented names. For example, the 82nd Street Business Improve District should be provided with the opportunity to choose a name such as Shop82.nyc.
      Civic Names And Civic Spaces

      See the Civic Names and Civic Space pages and a proposed set-aside project. 

      Dictionary Names

      There are tens of thousands of English words. See dictionary names for thoughts on their distribution.

      Geographic Names

      Some geographic names are legal entities, others are real estate names coined to sell property in specific geographic areas. New York City has hundreds of  "neighborhoods" and other places, some of which have value. See dotNeighborhoods and the Cyber Land Use Plan for more on this. Some examples:

      • Boroughs: queens.nyc, manhattan.nyc, brooklyn.nyc, bronx.nyc, thebronx.nyc, staten-island.nyc
      • Neighborhoods: jackson-heights.nyc, astoria.nyc, greenwich-village.nyc, uppereastside.nyc, upper-east-side.nyc, bensonhurst.nyc.
      • Park Names: central-park.nyc, centralpark.nyc

      Internet of Things

      Soon there will be an Internet domain name for every object in the public sphere, every billboard, building, database, fire hydrant, park, street, tree...This "Internet of Things" is empowered by the "Semantic Web." See how the .nyc TLD can facilitate the identification, networking, and development of the coming Internet, perhaps more appropriately, City of Things. Learn more here.

      Nationality Names

      New York City is perhaps the world's  most culturally diverse city. See the plan for reserving Nationality Names

      Neighborhood Names - dotNeighborhoods

      New York is a city of neighborhoods. Criteria are being developed for a process to distribute and oversee the operation of what we call the dotNeighborhood names.

      Portal Pages

      Possible portal pages include: craftsmen.nyc | fashion.nyc | hairdressers.nyc | hotels.nyc | pharmacys.nyc | real-estate.nyc | yellowpages.nyc and 2,300 other names. See the discussion about the portals and portal pages.

      See this directory for category names that have value and should be considered for distribution for a limited time via auction, with Public interest Commitments. 

      Water Resource Names

      New York is a port city of islands. Less than 10% of its land is part of the U.S. mainland. In recent years the city has started opening access to its formerly severely polluted waters. We are collecting the historic and current names of the city's water resources for possible reservation and allocation to responsible entities. See these City of Water names.

      Auction  Names

      In thinking about names without an obvious owner, such as news.nyc or music.nyc, there are three evident allocation alternatives:

      • Sell Them - Hold a simple auction with the high bidder winning.
      • Sell Them With Strings - Develop guidelines for identifying the public interest, then select names, such as music.nyc, to be set aside for development by relevant communities. These names are of two types: historic geographic communities such as Astoria, Harlem, and Soho. And communities of interest: music, news, shoes.... See the Rugby vs. Rugby page for a further discussion of when these two types collide. 
      • Operate Them - For example, with the Portal Names - hardware.nyc, shoes.nyc - the governance body should select a managing entity to see that name purchasers are listed in appropriate category(ies). This will encourage name sales and generate revenue though advertising sales on portal pages..

      Primary Intuitive Names provide a rich opportunity to raise immediate revenue and diminish name hoarding.

      An August 2008 paper published by ICANN and its "auction partner" PowerAuctions LLC see The Economic Case for Auctions in New TLDs, sheds light on the matter.

      In the instance of the .asia TLD, those indicating an interest in the same domain name as of a specified closing date were entered into a high bidder electronic auction. Possibilities for name auctions include:
      • sports.nyc, news.nyc and names of this sort have no obvious "owners" with prior claim on them. They can be auctioned early on to fund the start-up efforts, later to raise larger funds for our education efforts, or operated as part of a .nyc commons.

      • com.nyc - Using TLDs as second level domains is currently prohibited by ICANN. As there are intuitive and taxonomic benefits from such usages, we will petition for their use. If successful, these "TLD" names will be made available.

      • a.nyc, b.nyc, c.nyc..., 1.nyc, 2.nyc... - Issuing single character, second level domain names ( 1, 2, 3... and a, b, c...) is currently prohibited by ICANN. This policy is under review by the ICANN and should it change, we would place these up for auction.

      • and portal selections might also be held by the commons or auctioned.

      Disambiguation Pages­

      Disambiguation offers one means for resolving disputes over names when a single name can be associated with more than one entity. Apple Records and Apple Computer provide a classic example of an early conflict over the www.apple.com domain name. In many cases, this word or phrase is the same natural title of more than one organization. Disambiguations are paths leading to different domain pages that share essentially the same characters in their title. This is closely related to portal pages.

      Shared, Temporary Names

      It is expected that a pool of civic names for use on a temporary basis will be developed. For example, SaveTheTree.nyc might facilitate civic goals of many different projects, either simultaneously or over time. Such a pool of names would be part of a sustainable TLD plan.

      Undesirable Names

      This is an area of great sensitivity for many people. Four letter words are frequently the first to draw children to search a dictionary. What policy is appropriate for these words? What about their counterparts in foreign languages? A study of the FCC's community standards might provide a start on this and George Carlin's 7 dirty words. Others have suggested caution around certain words with a sexual connotation.

      Names to Facilitate International Travel

      On November 14, 2007 Connecting.nyc participated on a Broadening the Domain Name Space: Adding TLDs for Cities and Regions panel at the U.N. sponsored Internet Governance Forum (IGF) in Rio. Panelist Sébastien Bachollet, appearing on behalf of the .paris TLD, previewed the internationalization study initiated by developers of the .nyc, .berlin, and .paris TLDs at an earlier ICANN meeting in Los Angeles. He provided three instances where second level domain names might be developed in various languages - www.taxi.nyc, www.hotels.paris, and www.hospital.berlin. By way of example, he explained that when in need of health care, German or French speaking visitors to New York City might enter www.krankenhaus.nyc or www.hôpital.nyc in their respective languages and receive pages with the needed, in some instances vital, information. We are continuing a dialog on this innovation.

                                                          Internationalized Travel Domain Names

      Berlin Paris
      New York City
      Taxi.berlin Taxi.paris Taxi.nyc

      Hospital.berlin Hôspital.paris
      City Hall




      Policy Issues

      The following issue areas will be facilitated through policy formations .

      ­­      Dispute Resolution

      A Dispute Resolution Policy refers to the mechanism for resolving competitive requests for domain names. See the following for DRP examples.

      • .eu
      • .com
      • .asia

      Guidelines for the .nyc's DRP might also be guided by various "Laws of the Internet" (see sidebar). See this Wikipedia entry as a primer.

      See the Rugby vs. Rugby discussion for a discussion of sector contention.


      Connecting.nyc will limit those who can purchase a .nyc domain to those with a strong New York City nexus or connection. The criteria for establishing nexus will include residence, property ownership, and business license. For examples of nexus requirements see:

      Most knowledgeable people warn about a slippery slope that inevitably leads a TLD to be as open as the .com TLD. We believe "most knowledgeable people" are wrong in this instance. See our Nexus Policy page.


      • Name Panels - Create public name panels to review new names via Twitter.
      • Proximity - Geographic locations are an important element of the .nyc TLD's intuitive design. See the namespace and GIS page for these and other geographic relationships.
      • Sustainable City TLDs - When .nyc comes online it will provide a seemingly endless set of names to draw upon. But if we take a "city view" of domain names, imagining how the .nyc TLD will serve us 10, 20, and 100 years from now, one enters the realm of a sustainability policy. 
      • Launch Schedule - Read about the order of name issuance as specified in the city's agreement Neustar Inc..

        Relevant Links

        Key .nyc Pages