Introduced18 March 1996; 28 years ago (1996-03-18)
TLD typeCountry code top-level domain
RegistryGoDaddy Registry
SponsorGovernment of Tuvalu
Intended useEntities connected with Tuvalu
Actual useMarketed commercially for use in television (TV) or video-related sites; can be registered and used for any purpose; little use in Tuvalu
Registration restrictionsNone
StructureDirect second-level registrations are allowed; some second-level domains such as gov.tv are reserved for third-level domains representing entities in Tuvalu
Dispute policiesUDRP
Registry websiteTURN ON YOUR DOMAIN

The domain name .tv is the Internet country code top-level domain (ccTLD) for Tuvalu.

Except for reserved names like com.tv, net.tv, org.tv and others, anyone may register second-level domains under .tv. The domain name is popular, and thus economically valuable, because it is an abbreviation of the word television. In 1998, the government of Tuvalu sought to capitalize on the .tv suffix being short for "television".[1] By 2019, 8.4% of the revenue of the government of Tuvalu came from .tv royalties,[2] with hundreds of thousands of websites registered under the domain. Google treats .tv as a generic top-level domain (gTLD) because "users and website owners frequently see [the domain] as being more generic than country-targeted."[3]


Following its 1996 assignment of the .tv ccTLD by the IANA, the government of Tuvalu cooperated with the International Telecommunication Union to find a marketing partner for the domain.[4] In 1998 The .tv Corporation (DotTV) was established as the exclusive .tv domain registrar under the tentative management of Information.CA of Toronto, which agreed to pay US$50 million upfront to manage and market .tv registrations until 2048.[4] Following delays in payment, in 1999 the contract was reassigned to the California-based Idealab, which agreed to pay $12.5 million of the $50 million upfront and the remainder in $1 million quarterly payments over the course of a 10-year licensing contract.[5] Following a $5 million quarterly payment in January 2000, the company's subsequent poor financial performance resulted in the transfer of $3 million in preferred DotTV stock to the government of Tuvalu in exchange for waiving three quarterly payments. Following the hiring of Lou Kerner as CEO of DotTV in January 2000 the company grew to over 100 employees, establishing offices in Los Angeles, London, and Hong Kong.

Logo of the domain under Verisign

On 31 December 2001 the company was acquired by Verisign for $45 million, including $10 million for Tuvalu's $3 million stake in the company.[6][7][8] Quarterly payments were renegotiated from $1 million to $550,000, extended to last until 2011. [5] On 14 December 2006, Verisign began cooperating with Demand Media to market .tv to websites hosting rich media content. On 19 March 2010, Verisign reduced .tv registration fees in an effort to encourage widespread adoption of the domain. In 2011, Verisign renewed its contract with the government of Tuvalu to manage .tv registrations through to 2021.[8]

In 2014, Amazon acquired Twitch for $1 billion, becoming the first .tv website to achieve unicorn status. The government of Tuvalu subsequently renegotiated its contract with Verisign, resulting in an increase in yearly payments to Tuvalu from $2.2 million to $5 million, a 1/12th of the nation's annual gross national income (GNI) at the time.[9]

As Verisign opted not to renew its contract, on 14 December 2021 GoDaddy signed a 10-year contract with the government of Tuvalu to manage .tv registrations, increasing yearly payments to the government of Tuvalu to $10 million.[10][11] In 2023, an agreement between the Government of Tuvalu and the GoDaddy Company, outsourced the marketing, sales, promotion and branding of the .tv domain to the Tuvalu Telecommunications Corporation, which established a .tv Unit.[12]

Content stations

Websites with the .tv domain often feature video content for specific brands or firms. Publications like The Sydney Morning Herald and Pitchfork Media run sub-stations of their online publications strictly for original video content. Marketing firms like Vice in New York have received contracts to create brand-tailored .tv content stations, such as Motherboard.tv for Dell and the Creator's Project for Intel have given this domain type more visibility, and inspired the creation of independent content stations at the college level across the United States such as Massive.tv at Northwestern University, Maingreen.tv at Brown University, and Kuumba.tv at Washington University in St. Louis.


"co.tv" is not an official hierarchy; it is a domain (co.tv) owned by a company who offers free subdomain redirection services, like co.nr.

This company offers free co.tv subdomains. In July 2011, Google removed .co.tv websites from its search results due to their extensive use by website scammers. This had no impact on other .tv websites.[13]

According to Lucian Constantin at Softpedia, "CO.TV is a free domain provider that is obviously being abused by the people behind this campaign. All of the rogue domains used are hosted on the same IP address."[14]

Future of .tv

The island state of Tuvalu's long-term habitability is threatened by climate change, with the island being barely above sea level. In response to the question of what would happen if a nation-state would cease to exist, the ICANN board stated: "If the code element is removed, the ccTLD is eligible for retirement. Reason for removal is not of relevance."[15] This means that the top-level domain is dissolved if the country were to disappear.[16]

Proceedings from .tv domain registrations are used to fund the Tuvaluan government's Future Now Project (Tuvaluan: Te Ataeao Nei), which provides mitigation plans for infrastructure and maritime boundaries affected by climate change, digitization of cultural heritage and maintenance of the domain and related intellectual property's active status despite Tuvalu's uncertain future.[17][18]


  1. ^ "Tiny Tuvalu is .tv centre". BBC. 11 August 1998. Retrieved 1 April 2020.
  2. ^ Toafa, Maatia. "Government of Tuvalu 2019 National Budget" (PDF). Retrieved 13 December 2022.
  3. ^ "Managing multi-regional and multilingual sites". Archived from the original on 5 October 2019. Retrieved 5 October 2019.
  4. ^ a b Ogden, M. R. (1999). "Islands on the Internet" (PDF). The Contemporary Pacific. 11 (2): 451–465.
  5. ^ a b Conway, James M. (2015). "Entrepreneurship, Tuvalu, development and .tv: a response" (PDF). Island Studies Journal. 10 (2): 229–252. doi:10.24043/isj.329. S2CID 248650961. Archived from the original (PDF) on 19 October 2021. Retrieved 25 February 2017.
  6. ^ "Verisign adds .tv to its top-level domain holdings". ARN. Retrieved 17 January 2023.
  7. ^ "VeriSign Acquires The .tv Corporation: Secures Long-term Rights to Manage .tv Domain-Name Registry". PR Newswire from Verisign, Inc. 7 January 2002. Retrieved 25 February 2017.
  8. ^ a b Berkens, Michael (25 February 2012). "VeriSign renews contract with Tuvalu to run .TV registry through 2021". The Domains. Retrieved 25 February 2017.
  9. ^ Lee, Alexander (23 December 2019). "Tuvalu is a tiny island nation of 11,000 people. It's cashing in thanks to Twitch". The Washington Post. Retrieved 26 December 2019.
  10. ^ "GoDaddy wins contract to run .TV, Verisign didn't bid for renewal". domainnamewire.com. 14 December 2021. Retrieved 30 January 2022.
  11. ^ "Tuvalu cashes in on its coveted internet domain name amid rise in online streaming". theworld.org. 22 January 2022. Retrieved 25 October 2023.
  12. ^ ".tv Unit at Tuvalu Telecommunications Corporation". Department of Foreign Affairs - Government of Tuvalu. 13 December 2023. Retrieved 25 November 2023.
  13. ^ "Google blocks .co.cc, attackers are now using .co.tv". 6 July 2011.
  14. ^ Constantin, Lucian (11 June 2011). "CO.TV Free Domain Provider Abused in Google News BHSEO Campaign".
  15. ^ "Proposed Policy for the Retirement of ccTLDs" (PDF). ICANN. 17 September 2021.
  16. ^ "Long-term future of .tv domain uncertain". SIDN. 14 October 2021.
  17. ^ "What is a .TV Domain?". .TV. Godaddy Registry. Retrieved 21 September 2023.
  18. ^ "Future Now Project". Department of Foreign Affairs, Government of Tuvalu. Retrieved 21 September 2023.