Re: They didn't put the "." in dot com!

Chris Olds (
Tue, 25 May 1999 21:52:14 -0700

RFC 882 defines . as the delimiter between name parts, but so does
RFC 822. RFC 788 (SMTP) says

At some not too distant future time it might be necessary to
expand the mailbox format to include a region or name domain
identifier. There is quite a bit of discussion on this at
present, and is likely that SMTP will be revised in the future
to take into account naming domains.

This was published in late 1981, so that's the time frame to look at.

At about that time, Xerox was defining its Clearinghouse name server
protocol. The original Clearinghouse documents used @ between name
parts (ydalal@PARC@Xerox), but the final published version used :
because of objections by their i18n group.

James Tauber wrote:
> I just came across this mail's subject line in someones .sig and
> it got me thinking: who, in the view of FoRKers, is the person
> originally responsible for the decision that . would be the domain
> name delimiter?
> James