Qualifying top-level domain strings

Eligible categories of top-level domains

The current ways in which a top-level domain can be eligible for delegation are as follows:

Eligible countries for country-code TLDs

We are not in the business of deciding what is and what is not a country. Instead, we employ a neutral standard maintained by the ISO 3166 Maintenance Agency. Our policy is to create new country-code top-level domains when the country or territory is listed on the ISO 3166-1 standard.

The codes we use are two-letter codes from the ISO 3166-1 standard. The selection of the ISO 3166-1 standard as a basis for country-code top-level domain names was made with the knowledge that ISO has a politically neutral procedure for determining which entities should be and should not be listed in the standard.

The ISO 3166-1 standard is a broadly accepted list of country-codes intended for many uses, not simply for use as country-code top-level domains. The standard is maintained by the ISO 3166 Maintenance Agency and normally changes are only made based on information from the United Nations Headquarters.