History of Domain Name Industry

1984

1984

It all started with

the first 7 top-level domains

1985

First domain names created:

  • NORDU.NET
  • SYMBOLICS.COM

1985

First country code top level domains names were created:

1986

.CA domains registered.

1987

.CA registry created by
volunteers at UBC

1990

200 .CA names registered

First web browser, WorldWideWeb,
created by Tim Berners-Lee

1991

WorldWideWeb is live to the world

1993

The European Organization for Nuclear Research, (known as CERN) announces World Wide Web is free for everyone to use and develop with no fees payable

First commercial web browser, Mozilla (later Netscape), was created

1995

9,005 .CA names registered

2000

Domain names registered worldwide:

18453123

.CA registry transferred to CIRA with 100,000 registered domain names

2001

Domains created:

.biz .info .museum

2002

Domains created:

.name .coop .pro .aero

2005

46,233,988

46,233,988 domains worldwide

2008

.CA

reaches

1 MILLION

domain names

2009

193000000

2011

.XXX
domain created

2012

.CA

reaches

2 MILLION

domain names

2013

114362375

registered domains worldwide.

gTLD ICANN receives 1,930 new gTLDs applications;
green-lights first four in October

2014

First new gTLDs go live


There’s no doubt the Internet has revolutionized modern society. In less than 30 years it has become so deeply rooted to economic growth and prosperity that it carries more weight on Canada’s Gross Domestic Product than agriculture or utilities.

With Internet access originally limited to the scientific community, the growth of the domain name industry was understandably slow with only 200 registrations in its first five years.

It was the launch of the Internet to the public and the creation of the first commercial browser (Mozilla) in the early 1990s that would see the birth of the Internet as we know it today. As access became easier, the industry boomed to 20 million registrations merely 10 years later as organizations and individuals understood and harnessed the distribution power that the World Wide Web provides.

From online commerce (which reached a value of nearly $19 billion in Canada in 2013) to the power of the Internet to give voice to the voiceless in the form of blogging and citizen journalism, the Internet has become the greatest driver of social and economic change global society has seen in centuries.

The advent of social media in the mid-2000s was another huge turning point. With Internet users rapidly changing from passive consumers to content creators, domain name registrations grew five-fold during that decade to more than 114 million worldwide by 2010.

The registration rate for .CA, the country code top-level domain (ccTLD) for Canada, also benefitted from this trend. While it took 10 years for .CA to reach one million registrations, it reached two million just five years later in 2012.