Short answer :

But the fact that people are using different domain name extensions for branding tells a lot about where the current trend is going.

Example :,,,,, etc.

But why are people taking such steps?
It seems that domain name squatters are the problem here.

Oh why me?

Last year, I was going to buy a domain. I had already checked out its availability and made a logo out of the name. Soon afterwards, when I went to purchase the domain, I found out that some squatter had already got the domain. The time period between me finding the domain and seeing it purchased was about one month.
And it redirected to (assholes)

What lesson did I learn?
Well, first of all, purchase the domain first. Second, go for something other than .com.

Because most of the good domains are already in the hands of the squatters. I fear all keyboard permutations upto three digits are already taken and all dictionary words upto at least four characters are taken as well.

And because all the good domain names are taken, good domain names combined with domain name extensions make up for good branding.
The only problem is that google doesn’t give other domain extensions the same level of importance it gives to .com

Closing thoughts

The problem of domain name squatters is already is a real one . ICANN, the body behind domain name extensions proposes releasing more extensions which will only elevate the problem.
It seems that only by taking some strict actions against the hoarders will solve this problem. Until then, other domain extensions like .io, .er, .me, etc seem like good choice.

.io seems like a good extension. I have seen it in a lot of webapps and it does look cool. Now all we need is a .js extension :P

Edit : it seems there are some people who don’t know what grief domain hoarding causes.