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Website Domains (URL)

What is an URL?

URL stands for Uniform Resource Location -- think .com, .gov, .edu...

A website's URL (or address) can tell you a lot about the website and its content. It therefore can be an important thing to evaluate when considering whether or not to use a source in a research project, and it can also provide a way of narrowing your Google Searches.  Take a look:
 

Domain Ownership and Purpose
.gov

For federal, state, local, and tribal government organizations within the U.S.

Registration for .gov domains is managed by the General Services Administration. 

.edu

For U.S. post-secondary institutions that are accredited by an agency on the Department of Education's list of nationally recognized accrediting agencies.

Educause is the sole registrar for names in the .edu domain

.org

For organizations,  non-profits, companies, and clubs.

Registration for .org domains is operated by the Public Interest Registry.

Provided by virtually any domain registrar or web hosting company.

.org is an unrestricted, open domain

.mil

For U.S. Department of Defense (military) and its subsidiary or affiliated organizations. 

Managed by Defense Information Systems Agency. 

.com

Originally intended for commercial business organizations but is now used for virtually any commercial or non-commercial website.

Provided by any domain registrar or web hosting company.

.com is an unrestricted, open domain

.net

Originally intended for 'network' organizations (involved in network technologies) but is now considered a general purpose domain similar to .com.

Provided by any domain registrar or web hosting company.

.net is an unrestricted, open domain