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TLD typeCountry code top-level domain
RegistryDNS Belgium
SponsorDNS Belgium
Intended useEntities connected with  Belgium
Actual useVery popular in Belgium; youtu.be URL shortening for YouTube
Registration restrictionsNone
StructureNames can be registered directly at second level; some third-level names under categories such as ac.be for academic institutions also exist
Dispute policiesADR

.be is the Internet country code top-level domain (ccTLD) for Belgium. The domain became active in 1989 and was administrated by Pierre Verbaeten of the Katholieke Universiteit Leuven. In 2000, the control of the TLD was transferred to DNS Belgium. As of June 2013 there are 1,392,477 registered domains.[1]

It was announced in November 2005 that the initial registration of domains would be free until the beginning of 2006, though with some limits on the number any individual was allowed to register. This was remarkably popular, with some 17,000 registrations coming in on the first day of the promotion.

Domain names are registered directly at second level. Some of Belgian's main academic institutions, such as the Vrije Universiteit Brussel and the Université Libre de Bruxelles, use third-level names under ac.be, but others have abandoned its use (Katholieke Universiteit Leuven, Universiteit Gent and Université Catholique de Louvain).

Any .be registration has to be ordered via a registered agent.

The domain has also been in use as a logo for the federal government since 2003.[2]

Regional domains[edit | edit source]

The Flemish separatist party Vlaams Belang introduced a draft resolution in the Parliament of the region of Flanders demanding the creation of a Flemish top level domain .vl (for "Vlaanderen", Flanders in Dutch).[3] However, this resolution failed to receive support of the region's other parties. Only recognized UN member states are eligible for a two-letter domain extension.[4] In October 2008, the Flemish government expressed its intention to obtain a three-letter domain code for Flanders, like .vla, .vln or .fla. In 2014 .vlaanderen and .brussels were added, also administered by DNSBelgium.

Domain hacks[edit | edit source]

On the website YouTube, a shortener for YouTube videos is youtu.be, for example www.youtube.com/watch?v= becomes youtu.be/.

Google’s chrome experiment, for the 40th anniversary of the Rubik's cube, Chrome cube lab, features many domain hacks like Image Cube (imagecu.be), and I Am The Cube (iamthecu.be).

References[edit | edit source]

External links[edit | edit source]