Internet registry ICANN has approved a big expansion in the number of top-level domains (TLDs for short) that could bring the idea of .music websites a step closer. The organisation is accepting applications for new TLDs from today, with plans to make them available in late 2013. Billboard points out that entrepreneur Constantine Roussos has been campaigning for a .music TLD for some time, although backing from the music industry has been qualified by a desire to ensure that pirate sites and other unlicensed operators would not be able to get their hands on a .music domain. Roussos will welcome the ICANN news, but there are downsides: there could be dozens of new TLDs on the market, and rightsholders may feel they have to stump up to register addresses associated with their artists to stop cybersquatters moving in – an expensive business.

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