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Web Domains Face Major Overhaul   
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Beginning today Thursday, it is be possible to register almost any word as a web address suffix so that familiar endings such as .com and .org could potentially be joined by the likes of .pepsi, .virgin, or .itv.

ICANN (Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Number), the organization which regulates domain names, says the change would increase choice and competition but hints are controversial proposals.

Applications have therefore been opened for new generic Top Level Domains (gTLD), but the US Federal Trade Commission had warned the expansion of the gTLD had the potential to magnify abuse of the domain name system and the corresponding challenges of tracking internet fraudsters.

Peter Dengate Thrush, a former Chairman of the ICANN’s Board of Directors, told the BBC that the changes were necessary. "It’s badly in need of overhaul,” Dengate Thrush, now Chairman of the Top Level Domains Holdings, a company developing registering services for top level domains, said.

Registering a new custom top level domain name will cost approximately $185,000. The cost has led to concern among some non profit organizations that they will have to spend considerable sums defending themselves from cyber squatters.

Companies advising on the registrations say in spite of the cost there had been significant interest in applying for the new gTLDs before the deadline for applications closes in April this year.

Airlines unhappy-can’t fly after 2pm
Operators of Ghana’s domestic air transport sector are unhappy with what they describe as obstacles in the way of their operations.
The obstacles are having an adverse effect on profitability, customer confidence, loyalty and investment opportunities.
One of the obstacles, they pointed out, was that the regional airports closed too early.
“The Kumasi and Takoradi airports close at 6:00pm while Tamale and Sunyani airports close at 2:00pm. We have may people traveling from Kumasi to Accra to connect to international flights late in the evenings but because of the time restrictions they are all forced to come to Accra three or four hours earlier, “ Deputy Managing Director of Citylink, Mr. Kweku Antwi-Boasiako, complained.
Attributing the problem to the absence of runway lights at regional airports, Mr. Antwi-Boasiako said the company could take on more fights in the evenings if the problem was rectified. He described as frustrating the situation where a flight which arrived late at Takoradi was turned back to Accra.
“We could not arrive in Takoradi before 6:00pm due to some technical challenges and were turned back to Accra by the airport authorities on the instructions of the GCAA. Our passengers were mostly businessmen and women and had to be in Takoradi at the time,” he said.
The view was echoed by officials of two other domestic airlines also expressed their discomfort with existing infrastructure at the country’s regional airports. They said they had made request to government for the speedy provision and expansion of infrastructure at the ports.
“If the Ghanaian economy is booming and we are expecting businesses to thrive, we don’t see why we should not be able to operate beyond 6:00. We would appreciate it if government could provide funding to enable ACL to install runway lights at all regional airports in the country,” Mr. Antwi-Boasiako said.
“We have no office at the Takoradi regional airport due to limited space at the port,” lamented the Sales Manager of Antrak Air, Mr. Lordson Oduro-Saka.
The operators also complained of the rising cost of aviation fuel.
“Government should reduce fuel process for us or remove the taxed placed on the fuel,” Mr. Oduro-Saka appealed.
They noted that the cost of borrowing as well as foreign currency fluctuations were other headaches.
“If we are borrowing at 30% interest rate one can imagine the impact on profitability. This is regrettable because some of our competitors under foreign ownership are able to borrow at 7% in their countries of origin,” Citylink’s Mr. Antwi-Boasiako noted.
Despite the challenges, the local carriers’ representatives said they were poised to offer improved services to the travelling public this year.
The Finder

Source: GNA

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