Global superpowers aren’t determined by how widely their .domain is used, but if they were, the world would look very different and so if domain names ruled the world, America wouldn’t be a superpower
In order to show what that might look like, Nominet has created a new world map where the scale is based on each country’s number of top-level domain registrations. That means most countries look a little misshapen – some tiny ones are huge and a few notable ones are tiny.
The tiny island – 12 sq km (4.6 sq miles), a former British protectorate that has been a territory of New Zealand since 1925 – is an online giant in terms of the number of country-specific domains it has registered: more than 31m in all, bigger than China or Germany, its closest country rivals in terms of domain numbers.
The reason for the large number of registrations is due to the country’s unique operating model, conceived by Dutch entrepreneur Joost Zuurbier, which allows overseas internet users to register domains for free.
There are now 316,565,474 domains worldwide. Although .com tops the charts at around 40% of all internet domains, the Tokelau domain is the second most popular, with a 10% share, making it by far the largest country domain, according to data mapped
by Nominet, the official registry for .uk domain names.
The map, in which countries have been scaled according to the number of internet domains registered there, shows that China and Germany each have just over half the registrations of Tokelau, at 16m-plus domains each.
The UK is the world’s fourth largest nation, having registered 10.7m domains or 3.4% of the overall share.
The .us domain is relatively small at just 1,687,107 registrations, or just 0.5% of the overall total. Nominet says this is due to the preponderance of .com usage in the US.
Some countries, such as Syria (.sy) and Somalia (.so), are almost invisible on the map due to the tiny number of domains registered.
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