The Dot-Gov Footprint Is Inching Down

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A governmentwide effort to slash the federal Web presence is clearly still on despite some indications it might be delayed by other elements of the government digital strategy launched in May.

There are 1,122 top-level federal Web domains that are still active and not redirecting to other sites, according to a running tally maintained by the General Services Administration. That’s down from the mid-1,200s when the digital strategy was launched in May.

Updated dot-gov consolidation guidance is due from GSA in November. Federal Chief Information Officer Steven VanRoekel has said officials won’t let up on the plan to make the federal Web presence more compact and navigable.

VanRoekel has spoken positively about a British government initiative to reduce its Web presence to two master-domains, one for businesses and one for citizens. Such a massive consolidation would be extremely difficult for the U.S. government, though, he’s said.

There were about 1,500 federal domains when the government completed an inventory in October 2011.

For the purposes of the reform initiative, a top-level domain is a unique Web address with a World Wide Web prefix and a dot-gov suffix such as www.state.gov. It does not include lower-level websites within those domains such as Travel.state.gov, the State Department's traveler resources page.