Generic top-level domains (gTLDs) are one of the categories of top-level domains (TLDs) maintained by the Internet Assigned Numbers Authority (IANA) for use in the Domain Name System of the Internet. A top-level domain is the last label of every fully qualified domain name. They are called generic for historic reasons; initially, they were contrasted with country-specific TLDs in RFC 920. Read more on wikipedia
Domain Name Life Cycle
This graphic shows the life cycle of a domain name and the different stages that a domain can be in.