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Internet

Net makes a .name for itself

The Internet equivalent of the personalized license plate is now available with the launch of the new .name top-level domain.

The Internet equivalent of the personalized license plate became available Tuesday with the launch of the new .name top-level domain.

Global Name Registry is launching the .name domain, reserved for individuals. A similar extension, .me.uk, made its debut in the United Kingdom on Monday.

The Internet has no shortage of Web sites named for individuals--in ways ranging from the straightforward to the whimsical--and that tout their interests, achievements and other personal proclivities. Until now, though, a designation especially for them had been lacking.

Top-level domains, which help to bring some order to the online realm, show up in Web addresses as extensions such as .gov for government agencies and .com for businesses. The Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers last year added seven new suffixes including .name, .museum, .biz and .info.

Some of the domains have gotten off to a slow start. The .biz suffix was activated in November after having been stalled by a lawsuit.

Global Name Registry is selling both Web addresses (www.firstname.lastname.name) and e-mail addresses (firstname@lastname.name) using the new top-level-domain. The company said more than 60,000 domains and e-mail addresses have been sold so far.