25 years ago today a computer manufacturer based in Cambridge, Massachusetts called Symbolics, Inc. was the first to register a .com address on March 15, 1985.
A year later and only five other companies had registered a dotcom address. Flash forward to 2010 and 25 years later there are nearly 90 million dotcom addresses registered. VeriSign, who handles .com registry, says that there are half a million added every week. Dotcom wasn't always so popular though, during the early years not all companies decided to stake their claim to a .com address. In late 1987, only 100 total .com domains existed with early adopters like IBM, Intel, AT&T and Cisco registering their names. In 1997 the amount of .com registrations reached one million.
In 1998 and 1999 the ".com boom" began which saw nearly 20 million names registered in those two years. The burst of the dotcom bubble in 2000 saw registrations cool off slightly. The bubble burst in March 2000 when the NASDAQ stock market peaked at more than double its value from the previous year before. The NASDAQ lost nearly 9% in just six days triggering chain reactions from investors, funds and institutions who feared the results of the United States DOJ vs Microsoft, poor results from Internet retailers in Christmas 1999 and business spending on the Y2K bug.
VeriSign reports that some of the most popular websites today were registered late into the .com era. "Youtube.com, for example, wasn't registered until 2005. Twitter.com was also registered after the .com boom," said a VeriSign spokesperson. VeriSign have setup a 25th Anniversary site for .COM to celebrate its existence.