On November 23, 1992, inter.net was registered. In the 1990s, several hostnames ending in "pla.net" were active. The concept of spelling out a phrase with the parts of a hostname to form a domain hack became well established.On Friday, May 3, 2002, icio.us was registered to create del.icio.us. Delicious would later gain control of the delicio.us domain, which had been parked since April 24, 2002, the day the .us ccTLD was opened to second-level registrations.
Who.is is a whois server, indicating the registered ownership information of a domain. It was established June 12, 2002 and registered to an address in Reykjavík, Iceland.
On January 14, 2004, the Christmas Island Internet Administration revoked .cx domain registration for shock site goatse.cx, a domain which used "se.cx" to form the word "sex". The domain was originally registered in 1999. Similar names had been used for parody sites such as oralse.cx or analse.cx; in some cases, .cz (Czech Republic) or .kz (Kazakhstan) are substituted for .cx.
The term domain hack was coined by Matthew Doucette on November 3, 2004 to mean "an unconventional domain name that uses parts other than the SLD (second level domain) or third level domain to create the title of the domain name." Yahoo! acquired blo.gs on June 14, 2005, and del.icio.us on December 9, 2005.
On September 11, 2007, name servers for .me were delegated by IANA to the Government of Montenegro, with a two-year transition period for existing .yu names to be transferred to .me. One of the first steps taken in deploying .me online was to create .its.me as a domain space for personal sites.Many potential domain hacks, such as love.me and buy.me, were held back by the registry as premium names for later auction. One .me domain hack example is please.do.not.disturb.me.
On December 15, 2009 Google launched its own URL shortener under the domain goo.gl using the country code top-level domain (ccTLD) of Greenland. YouTube subsequently launched youtu.be using the ccTLD of Belgium. In 2015 Google used the domain hack abc.xyz for their newly launched Alphabet Inc..
In March 2010, National Public Radio launched its own URL shortener under the domain n.pr using the ccTLD of Puerto Rico. The n.pr domain is currently used to link to an NPR story page by its ID and is one of the shortest possible domain hacks.
In late 2010, Apple launched a URL shortener at the domain itun.es, using the ccTLD of Spain, in a similar move to Google's goo.gl. Unlike goo.gl, which is public and can be used for any web address, itun.es is used only for iTunes Ping URL shortening.
Spotify also uses the URL Shortener spoti.fi, using the ccTLD of Finland, to link to artist, partners, playlists, albums and songs.