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Rage Against the ICANN Machine

I'm going to do what no professional journalist should ever do: take a story at face value. So full disclosure: I have not checked the facts behind the story that sparked this little rant I'm about to embark on. But I've known the author for a number of years as being a consummate professional when it comes to reporting facts. And I've known ICANN, the organisation, for even longer. I have therefore seen first hand the organisation's ability to be at times borderline duplicitous in its attempts to reach a desired result.
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Where Has the Domain Name Growth Gone?

It is pretty common knowledge now that domain name growth started to drop around two years ago and is falling still. At this rate there is every chance that TLDs that have only ever seen growth will start to see a decline sometime in the next few years. What follows is a theory on where that growth has gone. It is widely stated that the greater choice provided by hundreds of new gTLDs means that demand is dissipating across them and that's where the growth has gone. more»

New gTLDs Are Great for Pump-and-Dumps, Phishes and More…

Yesterday, egregious financial truth-tellers (a client of ours at easyDNS) ZeroHedge broke the news that parties unknown, engineered what looks to be a textbook "pump-and-dump" on Twitter's stock by putting up a fake "Bloomberg Financial News" site on the domain bloomberg.market and proceeded to run a story on it about Twitter being acquired. The story spread and shares of Twitter stock promptly spiked on volume, Twitter finishing the day on nearly double the average daily volume. more»

Never Invited, but Always Present

Listening today to the U.S. Congress' House of Representatives Subcommittee on Communications and Technology hearing on ICANN governance reminded me just how often Vox Populi Registry, the company bringing dotSucks names to the Internet, is a guest at parties to which it has never been invited. Sometimes, like today, we are able to view it all from a distance and mostly we have refrained from trying to correct every misstatement or argue each odd point. more»

Is .SUCKS Pricing Model Gaining Traction With Other Registries?

Until the launch of the New gTLD Program, TLD launches were relatively straightforward. They generally consisted of a Sunrise Period, a Landrush Phase, and then General Availability. We would see the occasional Grandfather Phase or "Founders" program, but all in all, launches were pretty standard and straightforward. Things started to change with the launch of the new gTLD program. more»

I Spoke to a Club Manager

We, domain name and Trademark professionals, think end-users know about domain names. The truth is that few of them have ever heard of what a domain name is and worth; very few have heard about new descriptive domain names so I asked a Club manager my questions... Representatives of a famous French sports club were there and I bumped into them to ask my question: "any plan to change to a .club domain name?" more»

Can Your Brand Afford to Not Have a dotBrand?

More than six hundred brands have applied for their own dotBrand (a new top level domain associated with a trademarked brand). These represent every segment of our economy: banks, tech companies, media, food, luxury goods, etc. Quite a few dotbrands have already gone live. The current application period is closed, but the next round will likely begin in 24 months or so. more»

.BANK Launches With a Bang

The 30-day .BANK Sunrise Period just concluded this week and is notable for several reasons. The .BANK TLD is highly restricted to members of the banking industry. The .BANK Registry (which also has rights to .INSURANCE, launching this fall), was founded by 24 companies and organizations from the banking and insurance industries, The Registry's founders include industry leaders such as the American Banking Association, Citigroup, Dollar Bank, Independent Community Bankers of America, JPMorgan, Visa and Wells Fargo. more»

Three Things TLD Registries Must Know About China's Domain Name Regulation

Recently there have been a number of news reports/articles that are incorrect or misleading in interpreting China's domain name management policy. James has posted an article aiming to clarify what is going to in China's domain name market. Considering the potential negative impact of those reports on the participants of this market, I supplement James's post by pointing out three things, which I believe critical for any TLD registries that hope to have a better understand of China's domain name regulation and the special action based on it. more»

Is Sharing the Answer to .BRAND Top Level Domain Disputes?

In opening up for the .BRAND top level domain, ICANN has artificially created a scarce resource of great commercial value. Indeed, the values of the .BRAND TLDs may be astronomical due to the investments made by the companies that own the trademarks represented in the .BRAND TLD. While the above is interesting in its own right, I will here focus specifically on how we deal with situations where more than one company has a legitimate trademark interest in a particular .BRAND TLD. more»