It’s 2023 and Universal Acceptance still sucks domains still struggle to work on every platform.

New top level domain names started to roll out to the public ten years ago this year.

One of the big issues facing these domains is “Universal Acceptance.” As ICANN puts it:

Universal Acceptance (UA) ensures that all domain names, including new top-level domains (TLDs), Internationalized Domain Names IDNs, and email addresses are treated equally and can be used by all Internet-enabled applications, devices, and systems. UA provides the gateway to the next billion Internet users.

So how’s that going? Not so well.

I recently received an email from Rami Schwartz, CEO & Founder of .Tube. He lamented that .tube domains aren’t recognized by WhatsApp, the popular messaging app owned by Meta Platforms.

.Tube is not alone. Schwartz analyzed over 1,000 TLDs and found that many don’t work in WhatsApp unless you type the full https:// before them.

“Com used to be the standard, now it’s the Gold Standard,” Schwartz wrote. “And this is partly because ICANN has failed with its mandate of Universal Acceptance.”

He noted that other social media and messaging apps seem to do a better job of accepting all TLDs.

And email remains a problem. When the owner of a .codes domain complained on Twitter about a service not viewing it as valid, the popular InfoSec account SwiftOnSecurity noted:

The experience this person is having is inexcusable, but this is why I highly highly encourage businesses to stick to .com for email. I run enterprise email and have for a long time. I’ve seen the sausage. You can be pretty sure other things will work, but .com will _always_ work

Graphic showing tweet from SwiftonSecurity

Problems with IDN top level domains are even worse. If UA isn’t there for Latin characters, imagine how hard it is for other TLDs.

New TLDs face an uphill battle on their own. Compatibility issues don’t make it easier.

Post link: It’s 2023 and Universal Acceptance still sucks

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