New TLDs

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Noteworthy

A growing number of major brands are seriously leveraging their new TLDs, including .BNPPARIBAS, .CERN, .ABBOTT, .MONASH (and many others).

New TLDs / Most Viewed

In Bad Taste

So-called domain tasting is one of the more unpleasant developments in the domain business in the past year. Domain speculators are registering millions of domains without paying for them, in a business model not unlike running a condiment business by visiting every fast food restaurant in town and scooping up all of the ketchup packets. Since 2003, the contract between ICANN and each unsponsored TLD registry (.biz, .com, .info, .net, .org, and .pro) has added an Add Grace Period (AGP) of five days during which a registrant can delete a newly registered domain and get a full refund. Although this provision was clearly intended to allow registrars to correct the occasional typo and spelling error in registrations, speculators realized that this allows them to try out any domain for five days for free... more

ICANN Approves .XXX

The Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN), in its board meeting in San Francisco on Friday, approved the .xxx Top-Level Domain. The ICANN board members voted 8 for, 3 against, 4 abstain. While the decision still has to undergo final review with IANA and the US Department of Commerce, it appear that ICANN's decade-long, most controversial Top-Level Domain application to date has now concluded. more

Some Notes on the .XXX Top-Level Domain

Yesterday the ICANN board discussed and approved ICANN staff to enter into negotiations with ICM Registry, Inc. for the .XXX Top Level Domain (TLD). I'm sure there will be a longer more complete presentation from ICANN later about this, but as an individual board member I thought I'd post a quick note before people got carried away with speculation based on a lack of information. more

An Economic Analysis of Domain Name Policy - Part III

"Competitive Bidding for new gTLDs" is the focus of part three of a three-part series based on a study prepared by Karl M. Manheim, Professor of Law at Loyola Law School and Lawrence B. Solum, Professor of Law at University of San Diego. Special thanks and credit to Hastings Communications and Entertainment Law Journal, Vol. 25, p. 317, 2004. ...When new radio frequencies become available for commercial use, federal law requires that licenses be auctioned off to the highest qualified bidder. The FCC does a reasonably good job in designing and conducting spectrum auctions. They are often familiar in format, not much different than found for consumer goods on eBay. In other cases, such as with "Simultaneous Multiple-Round" or "combinatorial bidding," the auction design is fairly complex. Because of complexity in these cases, the FCC sponsors periodic conferences on auction theory and seminars on auction mechanics for potential bidders. more

Noncommercial Users Ask ICANN Board to Review Decision to Expand Trademark Rights in New Domains

ICANN's Non-Commercial Stakeholders Group (NCSG) has filed a Request for Reconsideration with ICANN's Board of Directors regarding the staff's decision to expand the scope of the trademark claims service beyond that provided by community consensus policy and in contradiction to ICANN Bylaws. Specifically at issue is ICANN staff's unilateral decision to adopt the "trademark +50" proposal for new domains, which would provide trademark holders who have previously won a UDRP or court decision with rights to 50 additional derivations of their trademark in ICANN's Trademark Clearinghouse (TMCH). more

All Quiet on the Virtual Front: Why Domain Investors' Fear of the Feds is Irrational

When a sniper ends the life of soldier Paul Bäumer in Remarque's "All Quiet on the Western Front," a laconic situation report from the frontlines recounts an unusually quiet day. In the grand scheme of things, nothing worth reporting has happened. Reading David Kravets' recent article in Wired brought this upsetting ending to mind. U.S. authorities taking down individual domains based on copyright infringement charges is the online equivalent of Remarque's allied snipers: picking off the occasional domain - for better or worse - has little effect on the overall situation. more

How India's .IN Domain Rouses from its Slumber

India is one of the world's fastest growing economies, the global leader in outsourcing and the service computing, and home to over a billion people. But when I first met officials from the Indian government to discuss their plans for .IN, India had a total of just about 7,000 .IN registrations, fewer than most small countries have. ...(Compare to 100,000 names registered last month alone) This is one of the most rapid starts of any domain worldwide. In my conversations with senior officials of the Indian Government and the National Internet Exchange of India (NIXI) which manages the .IN Registry, they credited three key decisions that proved critical to the success of the domain's re-launch... more

Objections to .XXX, Attention in High Places

Dot XXX is in for some interesting times, I fear. First the ICANN GAC chair Sharil Tarmizi is suggesting that more time be given for government and public policy feedback on .XXX. Objections certainly have started to come in from rather high places, such as from the US Department of Commerce. Personally speaking I'm inclined to be in favor of .XXX because it at least gives people in the adult entertainment industry their own online space and a stronger voice (gTLD)... more

Violet Blue on .XXX

We seem to hear quite a bit from ICM about their .xxx TLD proposal. People who might be interested in the view from the porn community might be interested in Violet Blue's article on the proposal. As you might expect, she is against and sees no real support from the porn world. She does not consider 153K defensive domain registrations as proof of demand. more

Domain Name Theft, Fraud And Regulations

When it comes to domain name disputes, no domain name has captured more media attention than sex.com. Of course, disputes about sex often obtain a great deal of attention, and the sex.com domain name dispute can grab its share of headlines because the case involves sex, theft, declared bankruptcy, a once-thriving Internet porn business, and fraud, instead of the typical cybersquatting allegations. Indeed, this case is remarkable for its potential impact on the development of caselaw concerning whether there is a valid basis to assume that trademark interests should overwhelm all non-commercial interests in the use of domain names. The answer is no, but the caselaw to support that answer is in tension with cases that strongly imply a contrary conclusion. more

Domain Names Without Dots

Now that ICANN has approved a potentially vast expansion in the number of generic Top-Level Domains, there's considerable interest in and confusion about how these names can be used. For example if someone registers "dot BRAND", can they advertise http://brand/ and have it work? more

The SocialDNS Project… and Why DNS is Not the Phone Book of the Internet

In this article I will explain the motivations behind the SocialDNS Project. I will justify why the DNS system is NOT the phone book of the Internet. More concretely, DNS is not a public directory nor enables search mechanisms over meta-information related to domains. In this line, I will present the advantages of SocialDNS, a naming and directory system that aims to become the phone book of the Web. SocialDNS is NOT another alternative DNS root nor aims to replace the current DNS for resolving domain names. It complements the existing DNS to offer advanced services that are beyond the scope of the existing infrastructure for Web settings. more

The Real Facts About New gTLDs

Many with financial interests in new gTLDs, such as Donuts, have painted a rosy picture of how new gTLDs create greater availability of meaningful domain name options that the global masses have been waiting for. Their message seems to be: FINALLY, there is an alternative to .com in new domain extensions like .guru, .photography, .blackfriday and .tips. But, the reality is that we have always had options other than .com to choose from when registering a domain name. The challenge isn't choice, its relevance and credibility. more

SiteFinder vs. Engineers: Our Mistake Is Ignorance

We, as the Internet engineering community, have made a great mistake. Actually, it wasn't even one large mistake, but a series of small ones. Engineers are busy people, and most of us work under the constraints of the organizational entities we serve (be it ISPs, non-internet corporates, or even non-profits). Few of us have time for politics; even fewer have the desire and motivation for politics, and those of us who do try usually end up facing a brick wall of stubbornness, lack of understanding of the underlying technical issues, or just a deaf ear. more

Live Nude Domain Names

ICANN announced recently that it has begun negotiations with an applicant for another 'sponsored' (non-open) top level domain, .XXX. There has been a fair amount of coverage, for and against. My initial reaction is (with the proviso that the public information to assess these things is always insufficient): .XXX seems plausible for what it is but it isn't what many probably think it is. ...that's the key to understanding this. This TLD is intended to be a trade association and is not a form of regulation. more