November 18, 2009 (CAP Newswire) — The Internet has always catered to the English language. And when it did eventually open itself up to other languages, they were still restricted to the Latin alphabet — or the European-based system of letters.
Clearly, that gave English-speaking countries a big advantage in the world of online business and Internet marketing. Websites in the U.S. and the UK could better market to English-speaking Russians the Japanese than companies based in those countries.
But that might soon change very quickly. ICANN, the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers, the sort-of-governmental organization that regulates online domain naming systems, has approved and will soon implement registration for alphabets beyond the European-centered Latin characters. SEO experts are predicting a huge global game-changer — especially considering the massive Asian markets that are currently just barley being marketed to.
“While Latin characters (A to Z) have saturated the market for domain names, the new move will help sites in Arabic, Chinese and Japanese languages take on more importance,” writes Laurie Sullivan at SearchBlog. “Google CEO Eric Schmidt said at a recent Gartner Symposium in Orlando that within five years the Chinese language will dominate the Internet and social media. And Egypt will introduce the first domain name to use the Arabic script.”
"It expands the international SEO soup, more specialists, cross-language analytics platforms and translators," Marty Weintraub, founder of aimClear, was quoted in the article. "Yeah, it's a great time to be an SEO, as the global village joins the network on their respective syntax and linguistic terms. Who knows how engines will value things. I think .com will always be global lakefront property."
The first of these new non-Latin domain names will start popping up in 2010. And if countries like China being to fully utilize the power of the Internet at their fingertips, it may be a very different cyberspace, very soon.