back to article New .tel domains bid to be world's phone book

The latest top level domain extension - .tel - opens for business today with a new twist on the DNS. Rather than merely act as a memorable address for a website, a .tel domain is designed to serve as a repository for contact data. By listing phone numbers, websites, Google keywords, physical addresses and email addresses in …


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  1. Chris
    Paris Hilton

    Great if....

    ... you're name isn't John Smith. Or any other name for that matter, with how-many-billion on the planet you're soon going to be given business cards that say 'Contact me at'...

    I've got a simpler idea, how about we just put our phone number on our business card? Hmm?

    Paris, because you never can .tel

  2. Ron Eve

    Emperor's new clothes?

    I've tried really hard, honest,, and I still cannot see what possible need people would have to buy a .tel domain to 'store their contact details'. FFS.

    Selling more stuff nobody wants or needs?


  3. Tom


    Why not just give someone your existing website and have your contact details on that?

    I recognise that I may be being thick, but what's the point of this?

  4. EdwardP

    Convenience? yeah right...

    1. Become a registrar.

    2. Invent a virtual, unlimited commodity.

    3. Sell all the names to typosquatting bastards, cos hey, at least we're getting paid.

    4. Every few years, create a new one.

    5. Profit.

  5. Max

    £280?? You must be joking

    That's a completely ridiculous price! Even the annual 15 quid is outrageous when a domain is only £2.

    Why can't there just be a standardized XSD to define contact details with a pre-agreed filename like 'contacts.xml', keep it in the root directory of your site, and the search engines/people follow that (along the lines of something like sitemap.xml)

    Their argument is if you change your .com or domain you should update it in the .tel? Bah! Pure nonsense! Pure overkill! Pure outrage!

  6. Anonymous Coward


    how do they plan to store and read the data in DNS

    I know just get a normal domain name and use HTML or PHP, etc with a Database backend and just output a plan page with the details on, got to be a lot easier!

  7. Marty

    what a waste of time !!

    wouldn't it be a better idea if say, you put a rss feed on your website with all your contact details etc... and then a new button to be added to outlook that updates contact details for current entries to your address book. from the rss feed? it may not even need to be a rss feed, just anything with a standard format.....

    ....and if this idea is implemented, its is mine.... copyright 2008. MJ and i want my pound of flesh !!!

  8. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Down

    Stupid is... Stupid does.

  9. Anton Channing

    Contact page?

    Why would we need a whole new domain just to host a contact page? Seems pointless...

  10. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Spam ???

    What a strange concept. In this day and age everyone's trying to keep their contact details away from where they can be harvested, this sounds like a spam co that's made a bit of money but now want more ways to spam you and make money.

    1. earn money

    2. create new TLD

    3. convince people to give us their contact details

    ... add email addresses to existing lists, sell phone numbers on to call calling companies oh and get paid to hold this information too.

    All round win.

  11. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    your gonna get forced into paying out...

    can you imagine if it does somehow become popular....

    then if you dont grab your own .tel your competition will and put there own details in there...

  12. Richard Kay

    DNS usable for all kinds of data

    Since the invention of the DNSBL, any entity with domain name A can publish opinions about unique entity B in relation to any context C by stringing together a domain name structured: B.C.A , e.g. the existence of the domain: is used by my email server to decide not to accept email from a host with address . Spamhaus maintain more than one context or reputation database. If the entity B is a domain instead of an IP address, its labels don't need to be reversed, because IPs are little endian while domains are big endian.

    The context could just as easily be a whitelist.

    The idea of storing contact details using the DNS isn't new as this was proposed for telephone numbers in RFC 2916:

  13. Max


    Tarry a little; there is something else.

    This bond doth give thee here no jot of blood;

    The words expressly are 'a pound of flesh:'

    Take then thy bond, take thou thy pound of flesh;

    But, in the cutting it, if thou dost shed

    One drop of Christian blood, thy lands and goods

    Are, by the laws of El Reg, confiscate

    Unto the state of El Reg.

  14. Kerberos

    Why all the useless domain names?

    We still don't have a .sex or .xxx because of these puritanical (but money hungry) idiots. Apparently giving porn it's own domain name would 'legitimise' (lawl) it.

    Yet he have stupid crap like .biz and now .tel polluting the namespace.

    The whole concept of domain primarily names by location is a bit daft. Why not by subject - .shop, .game, .movie, .porn, .blog etc. The added bonus is then you could boot squatters off for inappropriate usage.

    I don't know, it seems the whole thing is being run by idiot suits - bring on a oss DNS2 imo.

  15. Henry Wertz Gold badge

    So, I'll look up or or whatever in a while and find out that I need my pen1s enlarged, some sweet sweet v14gr4, work from home, and the King of Nigeria needs me to help get money out. Sweet. If it's done reverse format like the fax gateways (used to?) be, someone can get and get the whole North America area code, for Britain, etc. Not bad for 15 pounds or so.

  16. Anonymous Coward
    Paris Hilton

    Re £280?? You must be joking

    > That's a completely ridiculous price! Even the annual 15 quid is outrageous when a >domain is only £2.

    the price that was quoted is for validating trademarks. that costs real money because lawyers are involved and there are issues about liability like deciding if apple goes to the computer or record company. when the tld opens to the public prices will be the same as tlds like .com and .net.

    > Why can't there just be a standardized XSD to define contact details with a pre-agreed filename like 'contacts.xml', keep it in the root directory of your site, and the search engines/people follow that (along the lines of something like sitemap.xml)

    because the internet is about more than web sites, fuckwit.

    dns is far quicker and cheaper than any web session. a query will be over and done before you've even started to set up a http connection to get this mythical contacts.xml file.

    paris icon 'cos she's expensive and high maintance too.

  17. Chris Hills


    Why create a new tld when there is already a domain for the same purpose, Oh that's right, to make more money. I for one will certainly not be purchasing any domains in tel.

  18. This post has been deleted by a moderator

  19. RogueElement

    short cut

    bypass .tel and register with .419er and send your bank details along with everything else.

  20. P. Lee

    presumably not for individuals but for telcos

    ...since there is no way I'm buying a domain just to be in a phonebook. I'm still not sure I want my number put on the web. If I want that sort of thing I'll add an ldap host to my own domain, which allows me some control over things.

    It looks more like a money-spinning idea from the domain people, I guess creating a "telephone" DNS record type doesn't make anywhere near as much cash for them.

    Internet Providers, Pirates or Paris - its all about the booty.

  21. Eddie Johnson

    YADRS: Yet Another Domain Reseller Scam

    Anyone else notice that the only people who use these new domains are spammers? I have all .biz and all the other DNS 2.0 domains blocked at the proxy along with Russia, China, Poland, etc. And guess what? I've had more need to poke holes for a few select .ru and such - I've yet to encounter a needed .biz or .info.

  22. Neoc

    Anyone remember ".name"?

    ...didn't think so...

  23. Anonymous Coward
    Paris Hilton

    @MAX - standardized XSD

    > Why can't there just be a standardized XSD to define contact details

    The hCard microformat provides the same facility already (although not in exactly the way you describe). Microformats work and even a 12 year old with a smattering of HTML can set them up.

    Ok, they're not as fast as a DNS lookup (as argued by an AC above) but if someone has a need to harvest phone numbers at that speed, there's a fair chance they're up to no good.

    Paris, 'coz she's had experience with phones details going public

  24. Anonymous Coward
    Paris Hilton

    how does DNS work?

    anonymous coward asked above 'how do they plan to store and read the data in DNS'. wtf?

    the answer is they do that the same way as everyone else does. some ui sticks data into the dns - mx records for mail, a records for web sites, etc. stuff like your web browser or mail client does a dns lookup to get that data and find out what server to contact.

    i think lookups in .tel will return suff like phone numbers or skype addresses or im handles. if the bullshit on there crappy web site is to be believed, there giving away apps which will do this and let you do click on the results of a dns lookup to call or skpye or im someone.

    paris icon 'cos she likes to make herself available

  25. SeanR


    > Shit + Mugs = Profit

    are we back to 2girls1cup again?


    TXT records or SRV?

  26. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Domain Record Sales?

    I dont think they will have succes.

    But then again I said same about .ME domains and they are having world record sales now:

    Time will tell

  27. Stephen Ware
    Dead Vulture

    Re £280?? You must be joking

    Your name say's it all 'By Anonymous Coward'

    By all means argue points but calling somebody a f*****t on first reply because you either disagree or a have a better suggestion renders your whole post as childish and irrelevant...

    I never got past the insult....

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