Top-Level Domains

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Top-Level Domains / Recently Commented

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»

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»

New gTLDs and Universal Acceptance

Universal Acceptance is the topic of the moment, explained in one simple sentence: in the new gTLD world, it means that various groups (the DNS, ICANN and a few others) are working hard to make new domain names better accepted by the existing technical Internet infrastructure. A video extracted from the "ICANN 52" meeting explains it in 50 slides but I suggest a pause on slide 17, because it shows where the issues are and what remains to be fixed to give the ultimate answer to that question. 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»

.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»

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»

Pricing & Promotions of TLDs - Is Your Billing System Holding You Back?

As the leading consulting firm to the Domain Name industry, we work with many of the existing gTLDs, ccTLDs and new gTLDs. During our engagements we do a lot of listening (as well as work) and this gives us a unique perspective on the key challenges the industry is facing. Recently, we are hearing feedback from many leading registries and registrars about their need for more dynamic pricing and promotions and their concern that there may not be enough flexibility in their billing systems to speedily handle their promotion plans. more»

Dot Brands Should Not Rush to Market, but Build Effective Strategies First

Brands applied for their new gTLDs to protect their brand and ensure they didn't miss an important new opportunity, but few had a clear business case for how they would use the gTLD platform when they applied. As brands approach the July 29th contracting deadline, the inevitable question is arising: "What do we do with this?" more»

Law and Disorder: When .Brand Meets .Crime

Barclays Bank is a .brand pioneer, having recently announced plans to migrate its primary online presence to two new gTLDs it will operate on its own behalf. But Barclays Bank has also just plead guilty to a major financial services felony and been fined $2.4 billion for that criminal activity. While the new gTLD Registry Agreement is clear that a registry operator must remove any officer or director convicted of a felony, it is ambiguous in regard to whether the Agreement can be terminated when the operator itself has been found to have operated a criminal enterprise. more»

Should Barclays Lose the .Barclays Top-Level Domain?

According to Reuters, Barclays has plead guilty to trying to manipulate foreign exchange rates, and has agreed to pay substantial fines, along with other major banks. Barclays is also the operator of the .Barclays new top-level domain name. This is not a case where it's a single rogue employee or officer has been found guilty of a financial crime. Here, it is the entire bank (and registry operator) that has plead guilty. more»

What's Going on in China's Domain Name Industry?

Recently, there has been a lot of noise about China tightening control of the new top-level domains and how it could severely damper domain name registrations in China and one should make preparation for the worst. Initially, I tried to stay out of this as I know all the players behind this. But given that at least 3 people have emailed me asking what's going on, I decided to clear the air here. more»

Advantages of Crowdinvesting in Financing New gTLDs

The second-round new gTLD applicants have a tool they don't even know about: "crowdinvesting." That's when a venture sidesteps banks and venture capitalists and instead raises money by selling shares directly to the public. Usually this is done over the Internet, and often enough the investors can hope for a financial return that's far better than what banks and stocks offer. more»

Vox Populi Registry Says "Enough" About .SUCKS Accusations

Vox Pop Registry, the .sucks TLD operator, broke its silence today and has sent a letter to ICANN and government agencies in response to the extortion accusations."There has been much said lately about Vox Pop Registry, the company bringing dotSucks names to the Internet, not all of it flattering, some of it outright false and defamatory," says John Berard, CEO of Vox Populi.  more»

ICANN Board Member and Former GAC Chair to Give Evidence in .Africa Case

The controversy over the competing .africa TLD applications has been going on for some time. A recent decision by the International Centre For Dispute Resolution (ICDR) said that ICANN had breached its own by-laws and has questioned why ICANN won't allow a current board member and the former GAC Chair to speak to them and provide evidence. A letter that was published on the ICANN site yesterday suggests that ICANN may have changed their tune... more»

Competition for Monopoly gTLDs

The essay examines some of the new domain name managers' unjustifiable obsession with owning monopoly gTLDs when they should devote more energy and thought to making domain names more value adding. For the last three decades, the discourse regarding competitive advantage has focused on the need to rely on rare/unique resources and capabilities. However, more recently, the focus has shifted to the imperatives of efficient utilization of nonunique resources... more»