In what is seen as the biggest expansion to Internet domain name space yet, the ICANN yesterday approved a plan to introduce new top-level domains along with the option of applying for customized ones. In other words, customers will soon be able to choose top level domains that are more descriptive or specific such as .free, .travel, and .tech instead of settling for existing ones such as .com, .net or .edu.

According to the proposal, domain name applicants will be able to “self-select” any top level domains they fancy, provided they aren’t “contrary to generally accepted legal norms relating to morality and public order” or infringe on someone else’s intellectual property. Customized top level domains won’t come cheap, however. The fee for each application will be “in the low six figures in American dollars,” and the first customized top level domains are expected to arrive in the fourth quarter of 2009.