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Domain Names / Most Commented

Google's Free Public DNS Load Tops VeriSign, Raising Dot-Com Contract Tender Question

Google revealed on its official blog today that it is handling an average of more than 70 billion requests per day on its free Public DNS service. According to VeriSign's latest public statistics, it is handling only an average of 59 billion DNS requests per day, less than that handled by Google. more

New Mobile Domain Another Bad Idea

You may have seen a new proposal for a "mobile" top-level domain name for use by something called "mobile users" whatever they are. (The domain will not actually be named .mobile, rumours are they are hoping for a coveted one-letter TLD like .m "to make it easier to type on a mobile phone.) Centuries ago, as trademark law began its evolution, we learned one pretty strong rule about building rules for a name system for commerce, and even for non-commerce.
Nobody should be given ownership of generic terms. Nobody should have ownership rights in a generic word like "apple" -- not Apple Computer, not Apple Records, not the Washington State Apple Growers, not a man named John Apple. more

Domain Front Running by Registrars Continues to Draw Attention

In response to accusations lodged yesterday in a post on the DomainState forum, NSI has issued a statement which essentially admits that it engages in a form of domain front running. No one has challenged domain Front Running by registrars in the courts, likely because the practice is new and since the loss of a single domain would not typically generate a level of damages to support litigation. But litigation over this arguably fraudulent domain practice by registrars is both viable and likely inevitable... more

Conflict of Opinion

If a UDRP panelist believes domainers are the same thing as cybersquatters, is he fit to arbitrate? I came across an editorial on CNET today by Doug Isenberg, an attorney in Atlanta and founder of GigaLaw.com, and a domain name panelist for the World Intellectual Property Organization. The guest editorial focuses on Whois privacy and why it's imperative to maintain open access to registrant data for intellectual property and legal purposes. That's a common opinion I've read a million times. Nothing groundbreaking there. But then I was shocked to read that Isenberg generalizes domainers as cybersquatters: "Today, cybersquatters have rebranded themselves as 'domainers.' Popular blogs and news sites track their activities..." more

Most Abusive Domain Registrations are Preventable

As the WHOIS debate rages and the Top-Level Domain (TLD) space prepares to scale up the problem of rogue domain registration persists. These are set to be topics of discussion in Costa Rica. While the ICANN contract requires verification, in practice this has been dismissed as impossible. However, in reviewing nearly one million spammed domain registrations from 2011 KnujOn has found upwards of 90% of the purely abusive registrations could have been blocked. more

Gartner on New Generic Top Level Domains

Gartner, the well known IT consulting company, has published a report on the new top level domains that will appear some time next year. The report totally misses the mark. In a pure US centric vision, it focuses on ".com" as the must-have TLD, totally overlooking the fact that a ".com" is mostly worthless e.g. in Germany, where ".de" is the TLD one must have to succeed locally... more

Next gTLD Round - A Seven Year Itch?

Five years ago today, the ICANN Board committed to opening a second application window for the New gTLD Program as expeditiously as possible. The same resolution also directed the ICANN CEO to publish a document describing the work plan required prior to initiating a second application window. Ask a Board member or ICANN staff when they expect the next application window to open, and they will inevitably suggest 2020 -- another three years away. more

".Pol", a ".Com" for Political Candidates

In the coming months, ICANN will ambitiously expand the number of top-level domains (TLDs). ICANN could add ".movie" and ".paris", among others, to the existing ranks of ".com", ".org", ".gov", and ".edu". Here's another they should consider: a new ".pol" TLD that is reserved exclusively for political candidates and entities. A ".pol" TLD is needed to alleviate problems linked to a now-common phenomenon called political cybersquatting... more

Splitting the Root: It's Too Late

One of the consistent chants we've always heard from ICANN is that there has to be a single DNS root, so everyone sees the same set of names on the net, a sentiment with which I agree. Unfortunately, I discovered at this week's ICANN meeting that due to ICANN's inaction, it's already too late. Among the topics that ICANN has been grinding away at is Internationalized Domain Names (IDNs) that contain characters outside the traditional English ASCII character set... ICANN has tied itself with the issue of homographs, different characters that look the same or mean the same thing. Once people noticed that IDNs let you register different names that look the same, the intellectual property crowd that has always had a mysteriously great influence on ICANN went into a tizzy and they went into lengthy discussions on what to do about them... more

Shambles at the .Pro Registry

Registration of .Pro domains has descended into shambles as the Registry responsible for their administration has allowed a flood of domain registrations which appear to be in breach of the strict rules restricting who can register a .pro domain and the certified credentials required before any such domain can work. more

Typosquatting: A Solution

Typosquatting's negative effect on the surfing experience can be easily eliminated, and in a way that allows all parties to make money. What's called for is an affiliate program. You would not be happy if you typed a domain name into your browser and wound up in nowhere land because of a simple misspelling. That's the negative surfing effect of typosquatting... more

The Catalonian Matter: Law and Order, Democracy and Freedom of Speech, Censorship and Trust

I'm an engineer, and I firmly believe that Internet matters and, in general, Information Society, should be kept separate from politics, so usually, I'm very skeptical to talk about those and mix things. Let's start by saying that I'm Catalonian. Despite the dictatorial regime when I was born, forbidden teaching Catalonian, I learned it, even despite, initially for family reasons and now for work reasons, I live in Madrid. However, I keep saying everywhere I go, that I was born in Barcelona... more

A Case for Further DNS Registrar Industry Self-Regulation

In most industries, businesses that blatantly act against the interests of their customers to favor their own internal profit centers would either not be allowed or else subject to controls and oversight by the government. It is universally regarded as an unfair and deceptive business practice. In the domain name registrar business, however, the normal practices of legitimate business dealings and customer protection seem woefully wanting. Kelly's Case described here illustrates the point... more

Are Domain Name Portfolios Actually Worth What They Are Touted to Be?

According to a recent article in Domain Name Wire, "shares of domain name company Tucows are down over 15% in early trading after announcing earnings." Elliot Noss, President and CEO of Tucows, says: "We delivered solid financial performance in the second quarter, which benefited from the sale of a block of 2,500 domain names from our portfolio." more

New gTLD Abuse Trends Beginning to Emerge

With just over 2.4 million New gTLDs registered, abuse trends are beginning to emerge. Earlier this month we conducted a review of the top 100 most highly-trafficked Web property names across the top 5 most popular new gTLD registries. It is apparent that the abuse we had expected has occurred -- just not where we had anticipated. more