Currently sitting at number four on nTLDStats Top 30 new gTLDs (generic top level domain) list is .xyz. The recently released gTLD seems to be doing rather well for itself, maybe too well.
At 38,159 registered domain names .xyz has grabbed attention from industry professionals not just for the amount of domain name registrations but for where the registrations are coming from. After further research, 72.55 percent (27,686) of all .xyz domain names are registered from Network Solutions with the next closest being GoDaddy at 12.00 percent (4,578).
It is not unusual for one Registrar (a service that allows the developer to purchase a domain name i.e. Network Solutions) to have a majority of an extensions (.com, .net, .org, etc.) registered domain names. For example, GoDaddy has 52.45 percent of registered .photography domain names while the next closest, eNom, only has 10.69 percent. However it makes sense for GoDaddy to have more registered domain names for .photography because they offer it at a lower price, $17.99 compared to eNom's $20.99.
Part of what makes Network Solutions dominance of .xyz so unusual is that their advertised price ($20.99) is higher than that of both GoDaddy ($14.99) and eNom ($12.99) which have registered the second and fourth most .xyz domain names respectively.
Another reason why Network Solutions dominance is so strange is the names that have been registered. The Domains posted a blog earlier listing some names that have been registered under the .xyz extension and it included names like 00938625.xyz and 1qds3xxp.xyz. With such a new extension developers could virtually get any domain name they desired which is what makes these names consisting of random strings of numbers and letters so odd.
What has come to light is that Network Solutions gave away free .xyz domain names to developers who have a previously registered domain name with them. Network Solutions customers were sent an email stating their "complimentary" .xyz domain. The email stated that if they did not want their complimentary domain they had to click a link by May 27,2014.
Whether or not .xyz or Network Solutions will be disciplined by ICANN (the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers), the ruling body of the Internets domain name system, is unknown at this time.