Scottish government switches to '.scot'

United Kingdom

The Dot Scot Registry opened the ‘.scot’ new generic top-level domain (gTLD) for general availability on September 23 2014 and, on its first day, there were over 4,000 ‘.scot’ domain names registered, with around 1,500 of those being secured in the first 60 seconds alone.  Currently, there are more than 8,000 domain names registered under the ‘.scot’ extension. The adoption of ‘www.gov.scot’ by the Scottish government is the latest sign that the ‘.scot’ gTLD is growing in popularity as the gTLD for Scotland.

This move by the Scottish government marks a shift away from standard UK government web addresses which end in '.gov.uk', though the Scottish government's website can still be accessed via ‘www.scotland.gov.uk’.

The Scottish Deputy First Minister John Swinney stated that "using the ‘.scot’ domain as our primary web address will be a visible symbol of the Scottish government's online presence and our involvement with the worldwide family of Scots who choose to express their identity or affinity online."

It will be interesting to see whether the volume of registrations under the ‘.wales’ and ‘.cymru’ gTLDs will rival that of ‘.scot’ when these TLDs open to the general public in March 2015. Although there are a number of city TLDs among the first wave of new gTLDs, such as ‘.london’, ‘.paris’ and ‘.berlin’, there are far fewer that represent entire regions or ethnic groups in the way that ‘.scot’ and ‘.cymru’ do.

David Taylor and Sean Kelly, Hogan Lovells LLP, Paris

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