Ohio University

Custom Web Address Guidelines

Terms of Service

  • Policy & regulatory: Names must be appropriate under Ohio University Acceptable Use Policy 91.003 and any other applicable policies, laws, or regulations.
  • Branding: Top-level names must be approved by University Communications & Marketing.
  • Technical: The full specs of the named service or site must be shared in advance with OIT. If the underlying technology or site changes, OIT must be notified before the change happens.
  • Transparent: A name must not mislead the public as to its purpose or authority.
  • Accurate & legible: Names should be easy to read and must match the target service, audience and scope. Examples:
    • teaching.ohio.edu is too broad to be granted to an individual department.
    • alumniof2002.alumni.ohio.edu is difficult to read and includes a redundant area name (alumni). A better alternative would be alumni.ohio.edu/2002.
  • Unique: A name will not be issued for a resource that duplicates an existing, centrally managed, enterprise-wide university service.
  • Periodic renewal: Names must be renewed on a regular basis. Unused names will be reclaimed automatically.
  • Risk/security review for cloud services: To be issued a custom domain name, a cloud service must meet the standards of review and risk calibration for centrally managed, enterprise-wide university services.
  • Internal visibility: By default, domain names will only be presented inside the OHIO network unless external visibility is a specific requirement.
  • ohio.edu only: No new ohiou.edu names will be provisioned.

Kinds of names

Custom web addresses can be set up to behave in different ways, depending on your needs. Descriptions of the basic kinds are included below. Don't worry if you aren't sure which kind of name you need. We will figure out which technology is most appropriate when we process your request.

Top-level URLs

A top-level URL is a web address that specifies the first folder path after www.ohio.edu and is most commonly used to house a major departmental or service website. For example, www.ohio.edu/admissions is a top level URL that hosts the Undergraduate Admissions website. All pages in this site begin with www.ohio.edu/admissions.

Vanity URLs & redirects

A vanity URL is a web address that provides an easy to remember shortcut to deeper content within the OHIO website. Typically, this is used as a marketing tool to make it easier for visitors to reach a web address that might have a long, hard-to-remember URL. Once a visitor reaches the target page, the vanity URL is replaced in the browser by the actual URL. A redirect is a navigational aid typically used to help users find the new location of web content that has recently been moved or had its URL changed.

DNS names

A DNS name takes the form of name.ohio.edu or name.department.ohio.edu and is typically used for servers, web applications or cloud services that require an OHIO-branded name. DNS names will be reviewed annually.