Las Vegas Sun

September 30, 2014

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Las Vegas among first major cities to win control of own Internet domain

Las Vegas is carving out a piece of Internet real estate for itself after the city secured the rights to the .vegas domain address, the city announced Tuesday.

The city is one of the first municipalities in the country — along with Miami, Boston and New York City — to secure its own top-level Internet domain from the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers.

The nonprofit agency, which oversees Internet domains on behalf of the federal government, has recently been expanding its offerings beyond the traditional .com, .org and .net suffixes.

The city partnered with Dot Vegas Inc. in its application to ICANN, allowing Dot Vegas to begin registering interested parties with .vegas-based Web addresses starting next year.

Dot Vegas will serve as the designated registry operator responsible for all operations, including registering and renewing .vegas Web addresses, at no cost to the city.

In return for supporting the application to ICANN, the city will receive 75 cents per website registration or 10 percent of gross revenues, whichever is higher, under the terms of the partnership, which could generate $150,000 to $250,000 in the first year based on estimates Dot Vegas made in 2010 when it first presented to the city council.

Beyond the monetary boost, officials say the new domain suffix will help the city’s marketing efforts by making Las Vegas-related content easier to find in Internet searches.

“Las Vegas is known as the entertainment capital of the world, and now it leads the virtual world through the World Wide Web,” Mayor Carolyn Goodman said in a statement. “Las Vegas becomes one of only four top cities in the United States selected to have its own domain. What a fabulous marketing opportunity.”

VEGAS.com, which is owned by The Greenspun Corporation, which also owns the Las Vegas Sun, submitted a competing proposal in 2010 to oversee registration for the .vegas domain suffix and gained the support of the Clark County Commission. No formal application ever came from that partnership.

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