Why are custom domains paid?

Say I wanted a domain like http://doxr.it/ (there is no website there, so I could just take it)

Why do I have to pay for it? Why can’t I, you know, just use it?

Edit: I know some hosting things let you put a few values and then you get the site. Can’t I just make a website that’ll do the same things except for free? I know some companies own the thing after the dot (dunno what it’s called), Google is an example: it came out with the .zip domain. It’s good… for scammers, maybe? There is a YouTuber who made a video on that. Anyways, what if I just took .doxrreplcode because I know there is no domain name with that? I could in theory do that for free… unless I’m wrong somewhere (which I definitely am.)


Sadly, everyone just wants money, its a money thing, a capitlaism thing, a big corpa thing, or whatever people call it. Everything eventually comes down to te dolla’ bill


Yeah, but I can just use it/take it, right? No payment is required there.

TLD;r: You can’t do .doxrreplcode (pun intended)

Here are some terms regarding domains that you should know:

Here are some terms regarding domains that you should know: (please read this)

TLD: .com, .org. .it, .co.uk, .etc

Registry: Organizations which manage TLDs. They typically do not sell domains directly. Instead, this is done by registrars. IANA (Internet Assigned Numbers Authority) manages this so you could actually set up .doxrreplcode if you talked to them and managed your own registry which would almost certainly be WAY more expensive than just buying a normal domain from a registrar)

Registries manage/maintain domain names and records of them.

.com is owned by Verisign, for example.

Registrar: These are things like GoDaddy, Google Domains, Namecheap, etc. that sell domains to Registrants (you).

Nameserver: These are where your DNS records are stored. Most Registrars provide nameservers for you, but you can typically choose to use custom ones. There are plenty of free nameservers out there. (more on this later)

To make things confusing, Google has a Registry and a Registrar. https://www.registry.google/ and https://domains.google

When you buy a domain, here’s what happens. (let’s take doxr.com as an example)

  1. You go to a registrar, like Google Domains. They charge you $12 for one year.
  2. Google Domains contacts Verisign, who owns .com and gives them $8.97 (the current .com price, but it will increase to $9.59 in september because like inflation)
  3. Along the way, ICANN (Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers) takes an 18 cent cut.
  4. Google Domains gets the remaining $2.85
If you're looking for a cheaper option, try the Cloudflare Domain Registrar
  1. You go the CF Domain Registrar. They charge you $9.15 for one year.
  2. CF contacts Verisign, who owns .com and gives them $8.97
  3. ICANN takes an 18 cent cut.
  4. CF gets the remaining $0.00 (see why they’re so great?)

As you can see the bulk of your money goes to Verisign. It makes sense that this isn’t free, because you’re paying them to maintain your domain information on their servers. Hosting servers costs money.

You can’t take .doxrreplcode for free because you would have to pay for the servers needed to maintain that. (Not to mention the legal drama with IANA)

Free Subdomains

Remember how nameservers (DNS hosting) are free? This means you can have infinite subdomains on every domain for no extra cost. Many services like https://is-a.dev offer free subdomains on their domains.

You also can’t just take domains. To put your content on them, you have to add DNS records (on your nameserver) that point to the IP of the server where you are hosting your site. Your registry also needs to point your domain to your nameserver


egress starts lurking around the corner

Thanks, this makes much more sense :slight_smile: