1. What is a domain name?
A domain name is name that identifies a web site. Your domain name in online world is equivalent of our retail name and address in real world. It is your address because it shows customers and computers online where to find your site, store, products etc. It is your name because you can move your domain name from one web host to another at any time.
2. Who owns domain name? When you buy a domain name, you are actually leasing name. It is a lease because there is no way to own a domain name forever. You pay a fee on an annual or bi-annual basis to your registrar to continue using name. If you stop paying your annual fees, it becomes a lapsed domain name and goes back out on market where anyone, perhaps even your competition can purchase domain for their use.
Note: Online traffic will follows domain name. If you fail to renew a name, it is basically sending free traffic to another site owner.
3. Who is in charge of domain name system? ICANN or Internet Assigned Numbers Authority is non profit organization in charge of domain name system. ICANN performs some of following duties to keep domain name system running smoothly:
Approves Top Level Domain Names - .com/.biz/.edu etc ICANN is in charge of approving domain name extensions such as .biz and setting up standards such as which domain names such as .us or co.uk belong to a particular country.
Regulates domain name registration process and services ICANN approves registrars who are who are responsible for keeping track of registered names, billing customers, sending out renewal notices and selling top level domain names to anyone who wants one.