Pennsylvania got there first

Not often does a State one-up the feds and the rest of the 50+5, but Pennsylvania did that many years ago and on to the present.

Since a while ago, the United States has kept the *.gov TLD to itself. Initially it was for federal matters only, but now any government in the United States can get a *.gov for itself, but they have to indicate it is not part of the common government. The Code of Federal Regulations speaks to this in 41 CFR §102-173.90:

Are there any special restrictions on the use and registration of canonical, or category names like

Yes, canonical names registration request must provide access coverage for the areas conveyed by the name. So the URL would not be approved for the state of Maryland, but the URL would be approved if it provides statewide coverage. The logic of the names adds value to the dot gov domain. GSA reserves the right deny use of canonical names that do not provide appropriate coverage and to arbitrate these issues.

Which seems fair enough, but at least one of the 5867 *.gov DNSs either flouts or escapes the rule: doesn’t give us W—m B—r but rather Josh Shapiro, Attorney General of PennsylvaniA.


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