Check .lt domain

Even foreigners find kupolė.lt elected as the most beautiful Lithuanian domain name

This year, kupolė.lt collected the most votes from the web surfers and won the competition of the most beautiful Lithuanian domain name. The domain nebeprisikiškiakopūsteliaujantiesiems.lt was the second and paukštė.lt was the third in the competition. The organisers of the competition selected eleven domains whose names have unique letters of the Lithuanian alphabet: ą, č, ę, ė, į, š, ų, ū, ž.

Lithuanian software is needed

The head of the initiator of this competition, the Localisation Section at the Lithuanian Computer Society, researcher of the Institute of Data Science and Digital Technologies at Vilnius University dr. Gintautas Grigas claims that software for computers and smart devices translated into the Lithuanian language as well as the possibility of writing in Lithuanian in emails, TXT messages and domain names are important to every Lithuanian.

Gintautas Grigas, LIKS Gintautas Grigas, Head of Localisation Section at the Lithuanian Computer Society

“Even though the English language in software, trademarks and communication online using various emoticons is now a usual part of life, I am very happy that some people choose software translated into the Lithuanian language, Lithuanian domain names are registered for websites, most emails and TXT messages are written in a correct language. This is probably mostly due to the translation of the most popular software into the Lithuanian language, as well as more convenient opportunities to use Lithuanian letters on computers, telephones and domain names”, states G. Grigas.

Lithuanian domain name is not an obstacle

The representative of the folklore group “Kupolė” – the winner of the most beautiful Lithuanian domain name of this year – Mečys Palšauskas thinks that the unique Lithuanian letter ė in the domain name kupolė.lt is not an obstacle to accessing the website; on the contrary – he sees it as an advantage emphasising the authenticity of the name of the group.

“Surprisingly, the website of the group “Kupolė” kupolė.lt is found not only by the Lithuanians but also by the foreigners. That is how we receive the invitations to perform abroad. The Italians and French found information about the released CDs with the songs of the group on the website and contacted us to buy them. It is difficult to imagine how an Italian or French can write a Lithuanian letter ė in the domain name without the Lithuanian keyboard and even more surprising is the fact that they listen to the records of the Lithuanian traditional songs (sutartinės) or other works of music. Most probably, they are fascinated by the unique Lithuanian sounds”, marvels M. Palšauskas.

Mečys Palšauskas, Kupolė Mečys Palšauskas, representative of the folklore group “Kupolė”

According to the respondent, it was not difficult to choose the domain name for the website because the name of the group is old and deeply meaningful; therefore, it was the best decision to register the domain name identical to the name of the group.

“The name “Kupolė” was given to the folklore group in 1987. Kupolė or Kaupolė and her daughter Rasa are ancient Baltic goddesses of fertility and the power of growth. Kupolė also means a bouquet gathered from the meadows of seven fields. We try to preserve our ethnocultural authenticity in singing as well as dancing, collecting customs and folklore; therefore, it was important to us to have a name of the group that was unique and reflected our activities.

Even when we saw the difficulties in using the domain name containing unique Lithuanian letters, we prioritised the Lithuanian spirit and the authenticity of the name. If you use the incorrectly spelled domain name kupole.lt, you will find a website of the company providing lightning protection services; however, our aim was not to compete but rather to use an authentic name of the group for the domain”, states the representative of the folklore group “Kupolė” M. Palšauskas.

Kupolė Lithuanian folklore group “Kupolė”

Most of the domain names use incorrect spellinga

The analysis of .lt domain names conducted by the Internet Service Centre DOMREG at Kaunas University of Technology (KTU) revealed that only 7% or 2 000 out of 28 000 registered .lt domain names that could potentially have equivalents with unique Lithuanian letters are written using the letters of the Lithuanian alphabet ė, ą, ę, į, ų, ū, č, š, ž. The remaining 93% of the registered .lt domain names use incorrect spelling, i.e., they are written without the diacritics – dot, macron, subscript curl or curve.

“Such high level of incorrect spelling in domain names can be attributed to the habit of using the incorrect spelling that developed when it was not yet possible to use specific Lithuanian letters in .lt domain names. The possibility to create domain names with diacritic characters of national languages was provided when the organisation developing the internet standards IEFT approved the technical documentation of the IDN (Internationalized Domain Name) for encoding and depiction of the unique national letters. Although we introduced the IDN in 2004, the users got used to the habit of incorrect spelling before it was technically possible to use the unique Lithuanian letters, and have not abandoned this habit until now.

Another reason why, even 18 years after the beginning of the IDN domain registration, incorrect spelling prevails is that other technical problems remain unresolved. Unfortunately, the most popular social network Facebook still does not properly display the links to the websites using IDN domains. The possibilities of using an email address with IDN domains are also very limited,” explains the Head of the KTU Internet Service Centre DOMREG Tomas Mackus.

Tomas Mackus, DOMREG Tomas Mackus, Head of KTU Internet Service Centre

According to him, even with certain limitations, the IDN domains should be registered simultaneously with their incorrectly spelled equivalents to provide more protection for the name, avoiding confusion and disputes due to the misleading similarity of domain names held by another person just because of the similar spelling.

“If the domain name kupolė.lt of the folklore group and the incorrectly spelled domain name kupole.lt of the lightning protection services company do not compete due to their completely different activities, and only sometimes, perhaps, confuse the website visitors, let us imagine two different companies engaged in the same activities and competing, using domain names such as gražūs-papuošalai.lt and grazus-papuosalai.lt for their e-shops. This can cause problems for both consumers and the businesses,” warns T. Mackus.

If a domain name has unique Lithuanian letters ą, č, ę, ė, į, š, ų, ū, ž, both options of the domain name should be registered – IDN domain with unique Lithuanian letters, for example, gražus-vardas.lt, and the incorrectly spelled one using only the Latin letters, for example, grazus-vardas.lt. With both options of the domain name, the visitors can be directed to one of them without losing the traffic when the visitors write either version of the address. When the incorrectly spelled name of the website is given while speaking on the telephone or advertised on the radio, it sounds unnatural and an IDN domain would help to avoid such problems.

Competition for fostering the Lithuanian spirit online

To promote the use of the correct Lithuanian language online, change the users’ habits of the incorrect spelling, draw attention to the technical possibilities of the use of the native language in the domain names, the Lithuanian Computer Society initiated the competition of the most beautiful Lithuanian domain name in 2014. The idea was supported by Kaunas University of Technology (KTU), the State Commission of the Lithuanian Language (VLKK), and the association INFOBALT uniting the information technology and communication enterprises.

Each year, the names of the operating websites are selected from all the registered .lt domain names with unique Lithuanian letters. The evaluation includes the domain name’s correctness, sound, meaning, and how well the domain name reflects the content of the website.

This year, the organisers of the competition selected the following eleven domain names for the voting of the web surfers: kupolė.lt, kvepenė.lt, m-pjūvis.lt, nebeprisikiškiakopūsteliaujantiesiems.lt, ošanas.lt, paukštė.lt, plokščiažemė.lt, vidūnų-sodyba.lt, zoošalis.lt, žilvitis.lt, žirgai.lt.

In 2015 the title of the most beautiful Lithuanian domain name was awarded to voveraitė.lt, in 2016 – vištapuode.lt, in 2017 – ilgasūsas.lt, in 2018 – šilinga.lt, in 2019 – užventis.lt, in 2020 – sukįkaimą.lt, in 2021 – jūrė.lt.

Published 2022-04-22