404 Democracy not found: Terminated .gov domain names

Privacy.Gov, Gov.Gov, and WMD.Gov among lapsed sites

Written by JPat Brown
Edited by Beryl Lipton

Back in December, MuckRock user Dean Triplett put in a request for all of the terminated .gov domains within the last ten years. Last week, the request came in, bringing with it a Geocities-worthy cache of web 1.0. Warning: egregious use of frames and comic sans ahead.

While a lot of these are interesting on the basis of the domain name alone (the wmd.gov “not found” joke writes itself), what makes this especially fun is that a fair amount of the sites are archived on the Wayback Machine, ensuring that aught-internet gems like girlpower.gov aren’t lost to the ages.

Also included in the release was a list of all rejected .gov domain names. While fairly brief, the doc still manages to tell the sad tale of the Dallas Mayor’s failed quest to obtain BigD.gov.

Take a look through the list here or on the request page, and keep plugging them into Wayback - let us know what you find at info@muckrock.com!


Image via Wikimedia Commons