Wow! The DUNER BLOG staff had one helluva good time watching the OPENING CEREMONIES for the OLYMPIC GAMES last Friday night! What a party! As expected, thousands of DUNER DOLLARS were wagered during the PARADE OF NATIONS. We tried to best each other's knowledge of the obscure nations from around the globe. You know...the tiny, little nations who only get mentioned on American TV every four years. You know...not just Guinea...but Guinea-Bissau as well!
For those of you who watched the ceremonies outside of the USA...be glad you didn't have to listen to our pompous TV Host, BOB COSTAS. He loves to talk over every person and babble during every song. However, Bob did have one item which got the whole crowd into lively debate. When the sari-clad athletes from TUVALU marched out, Costas mentioned how the tiny Pacific nation had sold its Internet domain code (TV) for $50 million...just because their internet suffix is a common abbreviation for the word television. Soon, we all started wondering if any other codes had been sold...or coveted...or demanded.
We conducted copies amounts of research and have grouped them into three categories. First up: Countries who actually sold their Internet domains.
NATIONS WHO SOLD THEIR CODES
Tuvalu. The first country to cash in on their Internet code netted a cool $50 million for two valuable letters. While this might not seem like much...Remember: Tuvalu has the third smallest population in the world at 10,500. This means each citizen has $5,000 in the Tuvalu Trust Fund gaining interest!
|All Hail Mighty Montenegro!|
Colombia. In 1819, revolutionaries rejected the imperial name New Granada and renamed the northwestern region of South America after Christopher Columbus. They had no idea what a financial boon this would be two hundred years later, all because the abbreviation would be .CO. See...there are 90 million 'dot.com' addresses...so 'dot.co' addresses are now needed. Bogota gets 25% of the revenue generated by .CO Internet, which was $30 million last year!
Oman. A number of companies approached this Middle Eastern nation and inquired about using .OM for spiritual sites. However, the Sultan isn't exactly strapped for cash, so he has quietly denied use outside the kingdom for his national Internet domain.
Austria. It is confusing how Austria received .AT. Larger Australia got .AU...that makes sense. But why American Samoa got .AS makes no sense. Fortunately for the Alpine nation, many English words end in -at. Austria has sold a couple of gems (like KittyC.at and Bor.at.) but has rejected many others.
France. When Paris heard how the lowly Austrians were pimping out their letters, they began to worry the same thing might happen to them. Sacre-bleu! To insure the integrity of the .FR suffix is never compromised, all businesses must prove they are based on French soil before they are issued an .FR Internet address.
Cameroon. The Central African nation was actually named after the abundance of shrimp European explorers found in the Sanaga River. (The Portuguese word for shrimp is camarão.). Anyhow, today many Typo-Squatters are purchasing addresses like Amazon.cm or Google.cm...just because clumsy-fingered people omit the 'O' in .com.