Last year, Google spent $18.7 million applying for control of over 100 top-level domains including terms like .search, .fly, and .map. Generic as they may seem, the selections are obviously fitting for Google's core business, and the company wasn't alone in spending top dollar for its applications. But according to FairSearch — a lobbying body that includes Microsoft, Nokia, Oracle, and others — granting Google's requests would have disastrous effects on competition. The group has filed objections with ICANN, which has final say over who will receive each generic top-level domain (gTLD).
In the complaint, FairSearch says approving Mountain View's application would be tantamount to handing "a perpetual monopoly of generic industry terms to a single company.” Citing Google's overwhelming influence in the search market, FairSearch insists the company "doesn’t need more help in warding off potential competitors" by gaining control over who can utilize the .search domain. Google's requests for .map and .fly also have the lobby group leery; FairSearch points to Google's preferential treatment of its own services as a cause for concern. As you'd expect, FairSearch is urging ICANN to deny Google's applications for the three gTLDs, warning that affording Google control would only strengthen its "dominant market power." Amazon has also come under fire for its gTLD applications that include .book, .read, and .author. Two publishing groups filed similar objections with ICANN earlier this month.