The short-sightedness of using .fm domains for podcasting

In a entirely fact-free press release, BRS Media says that “Podcasting is one of the fastest growing segments of .fm domain registrations”.

Nothing interesting there, but this does provide the opportunity to rant about one of my pet peeves: why the hell are we using “fm” for digitally distributed podcasts? Tying your brand to an antiquated method of content delivery is short-sighted and if you are looking to create a brand that lasts longer than a couple of years, then you are saddling yourself with the future debt of rebranding. Its the naming equivalent of skeuomorphism.

My two rules of naming things (be it a business, your twitter handle, whatever)

  1. Don’t tie your name to a specific technology. Whatever tech you are using now will change in 5 years time. If you were a Flash developer named Linda in 2007, I bet you’re glad today you didn’t get @flash-linda handle.
  2. Don’t tie your name to particular content delivery method. Video used to be delivered by VHS, audio used to be CDs and radio used to be AM.

I am reminded of this tweet (although it applies to icon design rather than naming):