.LIVE – Not .COM or .ORG, Oh My

When you hear OtherSide.live bumpers (the little promotional announcements that play every 3 or 4 songs), you’ll always hear Denise or me mention our site name as “OtherSide-dot-live… that’s OtherSide-dot-l-i-v-e”, making sure to spell out the “l i v e” part. That’s because we think you might be confused by a “.LIVE” site name (known as a Domain Name).

.LIVE is a relatively new Generic Top Level Domain (known as a gTLD). Previous to about 2012, there were a few generic gTLDs that you are probably familiar with, and some that you might not have been. They were, generally (but, not absolutely) reserved for certain types of organizations.

.COM was, and still is, the most popular, being intended for commercial organizations (but, non-profits that wanted to be “dot-coms” could use them – KCRW radio in Santa Monica was a notable case). .ORG was reserved for non-profit organizations, but anyone could register one. .EDU was reserved for educational organizations (and, I think you had to prove you were one to register). .NET was intended for organizations that were associated with the Internet, such as Internet Service Providers. But, .NETs would crop up when commercial organization’s preferred .COM was already taken. Then, there were more specialized gTLDs, such as .MIL for military, .GOV for government, and two-letter gTLDs for states (.CO for Colorado, and so forth).

The issue was trying to get that perfect .COM domain name. For example, when we founded Ablaze Group, we wanted Ablaze.com. Well, it had already been registered — not by another company called Ablaze, but by a “domain investor” (to use a polite term, “domain squatter” being more appropriate). There were many shadowy companies whose sole business model was buying up desirable domain names en masse and sitting on them hoping for big bucks (last time we checked, the hoarder wanted something like $1,500 for Ablaze.com). We had to settle for AblazeGroup.com. And, there was every reason to believe this could be very profitable — I registered GeorgePeck.com a fairly long time ago for my voiceover website — another George Peck (there appear to be a fair number of us) eventually ended up offering me $5,000 for the domain name. I declined.

When I decided to reimagine The Other Side a couple of months ago, it was time to search for a domain name. While “The Other Side” may not initially be considered to be a wildly popular domain name, pretty much every variation of it in the legacy .COM/.ORG space was taken — in some cases, by a real organization, in most by a squatter. I e-mailed the “Privacy Protection” generic e-mail address for one of them asking about buying it. I never heard back.

Then, it occurred to me that the organization responsible for all this, Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN), had begun rolling out new gTLDs in 2012. I began searching Google Domains and found hundreds of new gTLDs. Hmmm, there was .pizza, .red, .wine, and .cafe. There were something like 1,200 new domains that had been sponsored by various organization.

I came upon .live. It was sponsored by a company called Donuts, Inc. I liked it already. And, OtherSide.live was available! While .live was generally presented as a live event or video streaming domain by Donuts, they still did a good job of selling it. .live “… puts you at the center of the action. It’s a place where people come to see what’s happening, while it’s happening.” Admittedly, OtherSide.live isn’t always “live” (but, it certainly will be more and more as it matures), I thought it was a great fit!

Welcome to OtherSide.live… that’s OtherSide-dot-l-i-v-e!