OMB issued a policy in 2004 that federal agencies MUST use a .gov, .mil. or .fed.us for all websites, on the recommendation of the ICGI (Interagency Committee on Government Information) working group. There’s good reason for that requirement. It’s great branding. Usability testing has shown that the public really does view .gov’s as trusted sources, largely because only governments can get the .gov domain. I’m not sure what kind of site you’re working on, but if it is primarily funded with federal government funds and/or if it contains official federal government content, it needs to be on a .gov. If it’s a state or local government site, that requirement doesn’t apply. But the logic still works. You can find more out more about the federal requirement on webcontent.gov: http://www.usa.gov/webcontent/reqs_bestpractices/omb_policies/domains.shtml
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