The Internet has matured and so has the ICANN, which is taking steps to prevent known abuses in its new initiative to expand domain suffixes.

It has policies to combat cybersquatting. The small-time spammers and frivolous websites are screened by the orderly application process and hefty price tag of $185,000 for applying and $25,000 for annual maintenance.

Even for spammers with deeper pockets, there's a chance ICANN can use its judgment to weed them out.

For organizations, the expansion allows them to better organize and control their content. For Internet users, it potentially gives them a shorter URL to type. For slightly sophisticated users, it gives them a convenient way to search for content from a domain suffix (i.e. keywords + site:.suffix).

In fact, I already find and to be useful terms to include with some of my searches.

Despite all these advantages, my big concern is SEO.

The Google search engine algorithm takes into account the URL name. Knowing this, savvy organizations can really abuse the ICANN suffix expansion.

Imagine URLs like,, and These sites would rank very high for commonly searched keywords and take loads of traffic away from more useful sites.

So while the chances of illegitimate organizations squatting on entire suffixes are low, they could still get away with grabbing SEO friendly URLs that incorporate new suffixes. If they can't justify getting these URLs with their existing company names, they can conceivably create new companies with SEO-friendly names just to get these new SEO-friendly URLs.

For example, FOREX.Com is an entire organization whose name is based on its SEO-friendly URL.

Of course, new SEO-friendly URLs may just be an unintended consequence that's necessary for Internet progress. If this is case, get ready for another domain name gold rush.