Since 2001 there have been occasional conversations on technical mailing lists exploring the concept of creating an independent industry association or consortium of domain registration operators. My recent experiences with the evolution of extensions to the Extensible Provisioning Protocol (EPP) have convinced me to look at these suggestions more closely, and I’m now convinced that this is an idea worth exploring.
Guest Post from Emma Jones, founder of UK-based Enterprise Nation
With almost 50% of small businesses said to be without a website and, of those that are online, only a few taking the opportunity to trade, Emma Jones of London-based small business network, Enterprise Nation, outlines the need for a campaign to help British businesses make the most of the web.
When I founded Enterprise Nation in 2005 it was to help people turn their good ideas into great businesses. Now, by offering expert advice, events, networking and inspiring books, we have more than 60,000 members in the UK who are all looking to create thriving small businesses.
When Enterprise Nation first started, Facebook was still in its infancy and Twitter hadn’t even been founded, which shows just how quickly the online world has changed! With over 2 billion people now online across the globe, the digital world represents a big opportunity for small businesses. Having a website to showcase your products and services is like having a shop window that the world can see into, at any time of the day (or night!). It’s never been so easy to launch online with template website providers, blogging platforms and social media. So why is it that so many businesses are yet to embrace the web and reap the rewards?
It has been another busy quarter for the team that works on our DDoS Protection Services here at Verisign. As detailed in the recent release of our Q2 2014 DDoS Trends Report, from April to June of this year, we not only saw a jump in frequency and size of attacks against our customers, we witnessed the largest DDoS attack we’ve ever observed and mitigated – an attack over 300 Gbps against one of our Media and Entertainment customers.
This attack is significant for a number of reasons and I encourage you to read a detailed recounting of the attack timeline as well as the various trends we track in the report.Read more
A recent study, by EURid and the Leuven Statistics Research Centre, set out to better understand the most common usage of websites that are linked to domains, and we thought it would be an interesting exercise to extend similar analysis to the new gTLD market. So, we analyzed all second-level domains registered in new gTLDs according to published zone files on June 29, 2014. Verisign utilizes our own proprietary process for classifying websites, which results in similar classifications to those by EURid. The primary difference is that the Verisign classification method is machine-based and is evaluated for each domain independently, while the EURid approach leveraged samples that humans classified.
One key finding from our June 29, 2014, analysis is that 3 percent of domain names registered in new gTLDs contain business websites. In this case, we define “business” as a website that shows commercial activity, a definition that is slightly broader than EURid’s “business” classification which is defined as a website that clearly shows commercial activity and that is designed for customer interaction. EURid’s usage stat for 8 established TLDs found that 30.5 percent of domain names on these established gTLDs contained business websites.Read more
Today, we released the latest issue of the Domain Name Industry Brief, which showed the Internet grew by five million domain names in the first quarter of 2014. The total number of domain names across all top-level domains (TLDs) is now 276 million! This is a 1.7 percent increase over the fourth quarter of 2013. 
.com and .net Breakdown
New .com and .net registrations totaled 8.6 million, bringing the combined number of .com and .net TLDs to approximately 128.5 million domain names in the adjusted zone by the end of the first quarter of 2014.
As of March 31, 2014, there were a total of 224 generic top-level domains in the root with approximately 149 million registrations.  The top 10 largest gTLDs by zone size were: