- Nigeria’s .ng Suffers Patronage, as Firms, Others Adopt Foreign Domain Names
Although there appears to be a gradual upward swing in the adoption of Nigeria’s domain name, the .ng, the traffic is still very low compared to the use of other foreign domain names like the .com; .org; .net, and a host of others even within the country. Domain name is an identification string that defines a realm of administrative autonomy, authority or control within the World Wide Web (WWW) or Internet space.
The continuous patronage of foreign domain names by individuals and businesses in the country has negatively impact the uptake of .ng, resulting in capital flight from the economy. For this reason, countries around the world strive to promote their respective domain system in order to retain substantial part of the Internet expenditure in-country.
Nigeria has close to 100 million Internet users, however, the .ng, Web Technology Surveys revealed, falls within top-level domains that are used by less than 0.1 per cent of the global websites. Companies, including 80 per cent of the about 20 million small and medium scale enterprises (SMEs) in Nigeria, and individuals still prefer to host their websites on foreign domain platforms. That is, most of the domain names in the country are either foreign or local ones hosted abroad. This has contributed significantly to capital flight from the country yearly.
Although, the Nigeria Internet Registration Agency (NiRA), said it is still working on quantifying the amount the country loses yearly to patronage of foreign domain names, but the country might be losing as much as N900 million yearly.The .ng, like others is a Country’s Code Top Level Domain Name (ccTLD), which is allocated to a specific country in terms of the DNS tree, by the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN), and is open to having sub-domains below it.
Nigeria’s .ng is administered by the NiRA and funded by the National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA). The Internet value chain, according to the Global System for Mobile (GSM) Telecommunications Association, has trebled from $1.2 trillion in 2008 to almost $3.5 trillion in 2015, at a compound yearly growth of 16 per cent and projected to hit $5.8 trillion by 2020.
In contrast to Nigeria’s 0.1 per cent usage, the Web Technology Surveys showed that the .com has the highest users with 48.4 per cent of all the global websites, followed at long distance by .ru with 5.1 per cent; .org has 4.7 per cent; and .net 4.6 per cent.jp enjoys 2.4 percent penetration; .uk 2.0 per cent; info 0.9 per cent; .biz 0.4 per cent and South Africa’s .za 0.5 per cent. The President of NiRA, Reverend Sunday Folayan, noted that “It is not necessary that the .ng domain is used exclusively in Nigeria, it can be used outside the country.”
Folayan said the .ng has impacted the economy positively because innovative companies are now using the domain name without any ambiguity.“I am always excited when I visit sites like guardian.ng as other industries like hotel.ng, travels.ng, tours.ng for your businesses. When domain names are properly used in Nigeria, it will boost the economy of the country.
“.ng has existed since 1995, NiRA came in 2005, a span of 10 years. .ng has existed for almost 22 years. There was probably about 100 domain names registered at the end of 1995, but by the close of 2005, a 10 year period, a number of domain names did not exceed 2,000. However, as at December 2016, over 75,000 .ng have been registered and active. NiRA has experienced a cumulative 75 per cent growth year on year as the figure almost doubles the previous year. We hope to sustain the growth. It may look small but, it has been a significant growth based on previous, the 75 per cent is significant and should be noted as improvement.
Folayan further noted that although highly competitive but “domain names are not directly related to population, but the activities. So, there is a tendency to look at 170 million Nigerians and expect 170 million domains but this is not true. Nigerians are on the Internet, but we are a net consumer of information on the Internet. We are not producing as much information as we should be producing on the Internet and without producing information, you can’t have website and content, without website and content, you can’t have domain names.
“Domain names are an accurate reflection of our production of information not our Internet consumption of information. So, if you look at Nigerians with mobile phones, buying SIM is growing significantly because they are going online to consume information, but when you look at the growth of information production, you will see that domain name production far exceeds this growth for Nigeria.”
Reports have it that in 2014, the number of active domains reached 271 million globally. The United States generated $600 million yearly from its domain name, which is part of the potential of the Internet.
According to Google’s yearly income statement, it generated $23.6 billion in 2009, which translated to $1.9 billion dollars a month.Similarly, the .com, .uk, .us, and many other domain names in the western world have made huge profits from their domain names; while some have been sold as high as $13 million.
A former President of NIRA, Mrs. Mary Uduma, in a report said Nigeria’s Internet economy and e-commerce have not started “our Domain Name System (DNS) industry is till at the lowest ebb.”
According to her, Nigerians, especially the private sector operators, needed to connect to the .ng domain to stem capital flight to other countries, whose domain names Nigerians patronise and pay huge sums for.
“Let me give you statistics; if there are 1,000 registered domain names in Nigeria, only 10 will be on .ng, 990 will be on .com and if they all pay N1,000 that is N1 million. While N990, 000 will go abroad, only N10,000 will be in Nigeria; so, we are losing money because people are not taking the .ng as their domain name,” she explained.
To drive traffic to the domain name, the Chief Executive Officer, MainOne Cables, Ms. Funke Opeke, said there is need to see more Nigerians come online, get the services more reliable and improve the local content development.
Opeke submitted that it is necessary to get services, especially government, banking and other major arms of the economy online. “I think the journey has started, we must continue with it.”
To the Chief Executive Officer, Internet Exchange Point of Nigeria (IXPN), Muhammed Rudman, so many companies, including banks, airlines trading in Nigeria still make use of foreign domain names; resulting in serious capital flight from Nigeria.
“Everyday people in Nigeria are registering .com instead of .ng,” he lamented, adding that the low adoption, could possibly be that the platform is secure, noting that security is not about the domain but the website.According to him, what will channel traffic to .ng remains more enlightenment and awareness of its importance to the economy.
Ayo Odusolu, the Business Development Manager, Skye9, a Nigerian entertainment SME on the .com platform, said, although the firm is proudly Nigerian, it will expand on the .ng platform in the future, adding that for early market penetration, the .com is more like it.
Another SME on .com, whose CEO spoke anonymously, said: “the .com is more recognised globally. How many people use .ng? I think it’s a class thin! Moreover, most people still don’t know much about the Nigerian domain name. I think the handlers need to do more in terms of awareness.”
Elon Musk Promises to Reward Best Carbon Technology $100 Million
The Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Tesla Inc. has announced that he will donate $100 million in reward for the best carbon capture technology.
The richest man in the world disclosed this in a tweet on Thursday.
“Am donating $100M towards a prize for best carbon capture technology,” Musk tweeted. “Details next week.”
Elon R Musk gained +$375 million in the last 24 hours to take his total gain in net worth this year to $32 billion and $202 billion total net worth.
Musk, who worth just about $27 billion in January 2020, has risen through the rank to top the world’s richest billionaire index.
The $100 million would be Musk’s largest known donation to date and represents around 0.05 percent of his net worth.
In 2012, Musk signed “The Giving Pledge” to join the list of billionaires that promise to donate half of their fortune to charity in their lifetime or in their wills.
Musk worth just $2 billion when he signed the pledge.
YouTube Suspends Trump Channel
YouTube Suspends Trump Channel
Google-owned YouTube on Tuesday temporarily suspended President Donald Trump’s channel and removed a video for violating its policy against inciting violence, joining other social media platforms in banning his accounts after last week’s Capitol riot.
Trump’s access to the social media platforms he has used as a megaphone during his presidency has been largely cut off since a violent mob of his supporters stormed the Capitol in Washington DC last week.
Operators say the embittered leader could use his accounts to foment more unrest in the run-up to President-elect Joe Biden’s inauguration.
“In light of concerns about the ongoing potential for violence, we removed new content uploaded to Donald J. Trump’s channel for violating our policies,” YouTube said in a statement.
The channel is now “temporarily prevented from uploading new content for a ‘minimum’ of 7 days,” the statement read.
The video-sharing platform also said it will be “indefinitely disabling comments” on Trump’s channel because of safety concerns.
Facebook last week suspended Trump’s Facebook and Instagram accounts following the violent invasion of the US Capitol, which temporarily disrupted the certification of Biden’s election victory.
In announcing the suspension last week, Facebook chief Mark Zuckerberg said Trump used the platform to incite violent and was concerned he would continue to do so.
Twitter went a step further by deleting Trump’s account, depriving him of his favorite platform. It was already marking his tweets disputing the election outcome with warnings.
The company also deleted more than 70,000 accounts linked to the bizarre QAnon conspiracy theory, which claims, without any evidence, that Trump is waging a secret war against a global cabal of satanist liberals.
Trump also was hit with suspensions by services like Snapchat and Twitch.
The president’s YouTube account has amassed 2.77 million subscribers.
The home page of the Trump channel featured a month-old video of Trump casting doubt on the voting process in November’s presidential election, and had logged some 5.8 million views.
On Tuesday, an activist group called on YouTube to join other platforms in dumping Trump’s accounts, threatening an advertising boycott campaign.
Analysts Predict 1,137% Earnings Per Share Growth for Shopify’s Full Year 2020
While the pandemic has devastated countless businesses, it has provided a major boon for eCommerce platform Shopify.
Shopify’s stock rallied by 169.9% in 2020 compared to the industry’s 26.6% growth. As of mid-December 2020, according to the research data analyzed and published by Finnish site Sijoitusrahastot, it had a 90 RS rating, which means that it had outperformed 90% of stocks during the year.
Based on the Zacks Consensus Estimate, its Q4 earnings per share (EPS) are set to jump by 188.37% to $1.24 while its sales will grow by 78% to $899.2 million. For the full year 2020, analysts project a massive 1,137% jump for the Shopify EPS.
Shopify Merchants Sell Over $5.1 Billion on Black Friday, Cyber Monday
Since Shopify went public in 2015, its stock has risen over 40-fold to more than $1,200 at the end of December 2020. Between 2016 and 2019, it skyrocketed by over 1,400%.
The eCommerce platform’s earnings for Q1 to Q3 2020 grew at an average of 552%. That was well above the 101% three-year average. In Q3 2020, its revenue nearly doubled from $390.6 million to $767.4 million.
Earnings in Q3 2020 rose from a net loss of 29 cents to $1.13 per share. Gross Merchandise Volume (GMV) soared by 109% reaching $30.9 billion, compared to 46% in Q1 2020 and 119% in Q2 2020. For the first nine months of 2020, there was a revenue increase of 82%.
For the first time, Shopify’s GMV surpassed that of eBay in Q2 2020, doing it again in Q3 2020. It claims to have a 6% share of the US market, higher than eBay’s but lower than Amazon’s 37%.
During the Black Friday Cyber Monday weekend, merchants on the Shopify platform sold goods worth $5.1 billion. Compared to 2019, this marked a 76% uptick and set a new record. Comparatively, independent businesses on Amazon sold goods worth $4.8 billion. The number of buyers on Shopify increased by 50% year-over-year (YoY) to 44 million during that weekend.
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