Nominet launches shorter .uk domain names

Stephen Fry flips switch on short domain names for the UK

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The shorter .uk domain name has officially been launched by Nominet, the organisation responsible for managing the UK's domain registry.

The move brings the UK into line with other countries that offer domains ending in two-letter suffixes. Up until now, these UK top-level domains were longer, e.g. .co.uk, .org.uk, and so on and these will continue to be available.

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Organisations and individuals will be able to buy the new, shorter domains with actor and national treasure Stephen Fry being among the first to make the switch. 

"Fret no more, people of Britain. The day of .uk is upon us. And team stephenfry.com as with all things is proud to be ahead of the curve, or at least cresting it," Fry said in a statement. 

According to Nominet, 93 per cent of users prefer the .uk domain over other new alternatives such as .company and .london. Around 72 per cent of businesses wanted .uk as an option alongside .co.uk.

The shorter .uk domains were made available from 8am today, with the first domains going live throughout the morning. People can sign up for the new .uk domains through domain name registrars, alongside existing domains such as .co.uk or .org.uk

"The new .uk is for people who want a short, memorable domain with the popular and trusted .uk ending. We know this combination appeals to our tech-savvy, digitally-engaged population," said Eleanor Bradley, chief operating officer at Nominet.

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To mark the new domain name, Nominet has made the world's largest welcome sign and placed the 10,000 square feet sign on the flight path into Heathrow Airport. 

"We're delighted that Stephen Fry has chosen .uk, given that he's known for being an early digital adopter. We wanted to welcome him and everyone else to the brand new .uk domain in a big way so why not do it with the world's biggest welcome sign?" added Bradley.

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