2015

  • 2015-12-10 - New gTLDs - Sunrise starts

    The Sunrise period of these new gTLDs starts next week:

    December 14, 2015 - January 14, 2016:
    .LASALLE

    December 14 2015 - January 19, 2016:
    .THEATRE

    December 17, 2015 - January 19, 2016:
    .SECURITY and .PROTECTION

    The following Sunrise phase will end soon:

    until December 16, 2015:
    .信息 (xn--vuq861b, Chinese for "knowledge")

    until December 19, 2015:
    .RYUKYU

    until December 20, 2015:
    .REIT

    Author: Julia Zang
  • 2015-12-09 - New gTLDs: Already available

    The introduction process of new gTLDs is progressing. For a selection of new TLDs that are already available, please see the article below. For more information about already available new gTLDs, please see here.

    .ABOGADO
    For lawyers and law firms.

    .COLLEGE
    For colleges, profs and students.

    .COURSES
    For online courses.

    .FILM
    For the movie industry.

    .LAW
    For lawyers and law firms.

    .LIVE
    For online communication.

    .LOTTO
    For lotteries.

    .MEN
    For men’s interests.

    .MIAMI
    For residents, visitors, companies, and fans.

    .RENT
    For rentals.

    .RIO
    For the second largest city in Brazil.

    .SEX
    For the adult entertainment industry.

    .SKI
    For the ski sports community.

    .SRL
    For companies with limited liability in Italy and Latin America.

    .STUDIO
    For artists.

    .STUDY
    For publishing academic publications.

    .TICKETS
    For entertainment, travel, and sport events.

    .TRADING
    For trading companies.

    Author: Julia Zang
  • 2015-12-09 - New gTLDs – Submit binding pre-orders now

    Binding pre-orders are now open for the following TLDs. More information about each of the new gTLDs can be found here.

    .CLOUD
    For music, photos, and data.
    Sunrise: until January 15, 2016
    Landrush: January 25 until February 5, 2016
    General Availability (GA): as of February 16, 2016

    .CORSICA
    For the Corsican community.
    Landrush: until January 15, 2016
    General Availability (GA): as of January 19, 2016

    .KRD
    For Kurdistan.
    Landrush: until August 2, 2016
    General Availability (GA): as of August 3, 2016

    .KYOTO
    For Kyoto residents and fans.
    Sunrise 2: until December 25, 2015
    Landrush: January 4 until February 3, 2016
    General Availability (GA): as of February 10, 2016

    .SWISS
    For Swiss organizations / legal entities.
    General Availability (GA): as of January 11, 2016

    .VIN
    For the wine industry.
    Sunrise: until January 16, 2016
    Early Access Program (EAP): January 20 to January 27, 2016
    General Availability (GA): as of January 27, 2016

    .WINE
    For winemakers, tasters, and enthusiasts.
    Sunrise: until January 16, 2016
    Early Access Program (EAP): January 20 to January 27, 2016
    General Availability (GA): as of January 27, 2016

    .PYC
    .PYC (.XN--P1ACF) is the Cyrillic analogue of .RUS
    General Availability (GA): as of May 24, 2016

    Author: Julia Zang
  • 2015-12-07 - Domain Management - Did you know ...

    ... that BrandShelter's Domain Management Service provides easy administration, consolidation and protection of domain portfolios of any size?

    Our range of domain management services includes updating, managing, consolidating and securing your entire domain portfolio. We provide you the registration of domain names around the world, even in those places where processes are quite manual.

    More information about BrandShelter's Domain Management Service can be found here.

    Author: Julia Zang
  • 2015-12-04 - New gTLDs - Sunrise starts

    The Sunrise period of these new gTLDs starts next week:

    December 9, 2015 - January 12, 2016:
    .AUTO, .CARS, and .CAR

    December 9, 2015 - January 31, 2016:
    .コム (xn--tckwe, Japanese for ".COM")

    Author: Julia Zang
  • 2015-12-04 - Chinese TLD for "healthy" is available

    Domain names under the TLD .健康 (= .XN--NYQY26A, Chinese for "healthy") are now available for registration.

    This TLD has the mission to provide a dedicated digital platform in China, Japan and South Korea for all things healthy. Eligibility is restricted to registrants who will utilize their domain names and associated websites to discuss and promote healthy products and lifestyles. Use of any .健康 domain name for any other purpose, in Registry Operator’s sole discretion, may result in suspension, deletion and/or transfer of such domain name.

    Author: Julia Zang
  • 2015-11-27 - New gTLDs - Sunrise starts

    The Sunrise period of these new gTLDs starts next week:

    December 2, 2015 - January 31, 2016:
    .YACHTS

    December 3, 2015 - February 1, 2016:
    .BOATS

    The following Sunrise phase will end soon:

    until November 30, 2015:
    .KYOTO

    Author: Julia Zang
  • 2015-11-23 - First .SKI domains auction on December 10

    On December 10, StartingDot is putting SNOW.SKI and other great names such as .FREE.SKI, .TRAVEL.SKI, .NEWS.SKI, or .INFO.SKI on the auction block to celebrate the start of the ski season. This is a rare opportunity to own the most demanded generic .SKI domains at lower than market prices.

    For more information, please contact the BrandShelter team.

    Author: Julia Zang
  • 2015-11-20 - .SWISS: 20-day Post-Launch Publication Window is now open

    All .SWISS domain name applications submitted in SUNRISE, SWISS-PUBLIC-ADMINISTRATIONS, and SWISS-OTHER-RIGHTS will be published on the registry website for twenty days to give interesting parties the opportunity to submit competing applications.

    All applications will be allocated after this 20-day Publication Window if unique and conflict-free. If there is more than one eligible application for the same name, the registry will make use of the Contention Resolution process: Applications will be prioritized according to certain specifications and allocated by various methods, e.g. by an auction.

    The dates of this 20-day Post-Launch Publication Window have been set as follows by the registry:

    Start: November 19, 2015 (13:00 UTC)

    End: December 9, 2015 (13:00 UTC)

    All pre-ordered domain names that have been submitted in SUNRISE, SWISS-PUBLIC-ADMINISTRATIONS, and SWISS-OTHER-RIGHTS and have not been rejected by the registry are available on this website.

    During the publication window, the registry system will only accept competing pre-orders for domains that have been published. Other than that, all conditions are identical to those of the launch periods that ended on November 9, 2015. Applications can be submitted in any of the three parallel phases, namely:

    •     SUNRISE (highest priority, requires a valid TMCH SMD file)
    •     SWISS-PUBLIC-ADMINISTRATIONS (second priority, applicant must be registered as a Swiss public authority)
    •     SWISS-OTHER-RIGHTS (third priority, requires rights based on registered business name or trademark)


    Trademark holders should be aware that there are special provisions for generic domain names. So the requested domain names must not be a “Designation with a Generic Character", as the domain names which correspond to or which are connected with designations of a generic character with a particular interest for all or part of the Swiss community may only be allocated under a naming mandate.

    For more information about the naming mandates, please contact the BrandShelter team.

    Author: Julia Zang
  • 2015-11-18 - Afilias: Release of 2-character domains

    Afilias released 2-character Letter-Letter domain names in the following TLDs: .BLUE, .PINK, .RED, .KIM, .SHIKSHA, .移动 (.xn--6frz82g), .BLACK, .ORGANIC, .LGBT, .POKER, .LOTTO, .VOTE, .VOTO. These names are available for registration at premium pricing.

    Author: Julia Zang
  • 2015-11-18 - Meet our team at IP Service World

    BrandShelter visits the IP Service World from November 23-24, 2015 in Munich, Germany.

    Product manager Andreas Soll will hold a speech on "Trademark protection in the Internet" on November 23, 2015.

    You are welcome to schedule appointments with our team. Please write an e-mail for an appointment to info@brandshelter.com.

    We are looking forward to meeting you!

    Author: Julia Zang
  • 2015-11-13 - New gTLDs - Sunrise starts

    The Sunrise period of these new gTLD starts next week:

    November 16, 2015 - December 16, 2015:
    .信息 (xn--vuq861b, Chinese for "knowledge")

    November 16, 2015 - January 15, 2016:
    .CLOUD

    November 17, 2015 - December 20, 2015:
    .REIT

    November 17, 2015 - January 16, 2015:
    .WINE and .VIN

    The following Sunrise phases will end soon:

    until November 14, 2015:
    .八卦 (xn--45q11c, Chinese for "gossip")

    until November 15, 2015:
    .BROKER

    until November 17, 2015:
    .EARTH

    Author: Julia Zang
  • 2015-11-13 - .TOP: More than 90 % discount for registered trademarks

    The .TOP registry has greatly reduced the registration prices for selected trademark domain names. Whether the discount applies to your brand needs to be verified on a case-by-case basis.

    Please contact our team if you are interested in .TOP domain name registration.

    Author: Julia Zang
  • 2015-11-05 - New gTLDs - Sunrise starts

    The Sunrise period of this new gTLD starts next week:

    November 10, 2015 - January 13, 2016:
    .FAMILY

    The following Sunrise phases will end soon:

    until November 8, 2015:
    .TRADING, .SPREADBETTING, and .CFD

    until November 9, 2015:
    .SWISS

    Author: Julia Zang
  • 2015-11-04 - .PRO will become an unrestricted TLD open to all registrants

    Since its launch in 2002, .PRO eligibility has been restricted to only certain specified professions, and registrars have been required to implement special procedures in order to register .PRO names. These restrictions and procedures will be eliminated on November 16. This liberalization does not only apply to .PRO second-level domains, but also for all third-level domain names such as names below .LAW.PRO, .MED.PRO, or .ENG.PRO.

    .PRO registration requests no longer need to include the supplemental data such as profession, authority name, authority URL, and license number which was previously required. The change applies to all the third level .PRO TLDs as well. Renewals, transfers, etc. will be handled according to the revised policies beginning on November 16. This change is a result of the renewal of the .PRO Registry Agreement under new terms recently entered into between Registry Services Corporation and ICANN. The change in eligibility will open the TLD to all registrants.

    Author: Julia Zang
  • 2015-10-30 - New gTLDs - Sunrise starts

    The Sunrise period of this new gTLD starts next week:

    November 4, 2015 - January 6, 2016:
    .OFFICE

    The following Sunrise phase will end soon:

    until October 31, 2015:
    .信息 (xn--vuq861b, Chinese for "information")

    Author: Julia Zang
  • 2015-10-29 - .SWISS: Launch in process

    The .SWISS registry is accepting .SWISS applications since September 7, 2015. The launch consists of one Single 64-day Launch Phase with three Categories: “Sunrise”, “Public Administrations” and “Other Prior Rights”.

    The "Sunrise" will be a standard sunrise phase during which certain registrants with trademarks registered in the TMCH may apply for domain names that exactly match one of the registered labels. During the "Public Administrations" phase, Swiss Public Authorities and certain other entities may register domain names. The "Other Prior Rights" phase allowing Swiss legal entities to apply for certain domain names, provided they are able to claim some prior right (trademark; corporate name, etc.).

    The 64-day Launch Phase will end on November 9, 2015. The General Availability will open on January 11, 2016.

    Author: Julia Zang
  • 2015-10-19 - New gTLDs: Already available

    The introduction process of new gTLDs is progressing. For a selection of new TLDs that are already available, please see the article below.

    .ACCOUNTANT
    For accountants.

    .AMSTERDAM
    For the capital of the Netherlands.

    .CAFE
    For cafés, coffee producers and coffee lovers.

    .COUPONS
    For smart buyers.

    .DOG
    For dog owners.

    .DOWNLOAD
    For sharing information.

    .EXPRESS
    For everything that has to happen quickly.

    .FANS
    To connect fans online.

    .FYI
    For sharing information.

    .GOLD
    For banks and jewelers.

    .GOLF
    For golf players, coaches and clubs.

    .HOCKEY
    For clubs, players and fans.

    .JEWELRY
    For jewelry manufacturers, sellers and lovers.

    .LAT
    For Latin America.

    .LOAN
    For lenders and borrowers.

    .LOL
    For comics and publishers.

    .LOVE
    For Lovers.

    .MBA
    For Masters of Business Administration.

    .MOVIE
    For movie addicts.

    .NEWS
    For news agencies, newspapers, radio and television stations.

    .ONLINE
    For the best online presence.

    .PLUS
    For extra services.

    .RACING
    For racing fans.

    .RUN
    For athletes.

    .SHOW
    For theater performances, sporting events, concerts and many other events.

    .SITE
    For all new webSITEs.

    .SOCCER
    For clubs, player and fans.

    .TAXI
    For Taxi services.

    .TEAM
    For each type of team.

    .TECH
    For technology-based industries.

    .THEATER
    For theaters.

    .TOURS
    For bands, travel agencies, and globetrotters.

    .WIN
    For winners.

    Author: Julia Zang
  • 2015-10-16 - New gTLDs - Sunrise starts

    The Sunrise period of this new gTLD starts next week.

    October 20, 2015 - December 19, 2015:
    .RYUKYU

    The following Sunrise phases will end soon:

    until October 17, 2015:
    .STUDIO and .LIVE

    until October 22, 2015:
    .SRL and .健康 (xn--nyqy26a, Chinese for "healthy")

    Author: Julia Zang
  • 2015-10-13 - Domain Names Providing Opportunities For Small Business and Individuals

    Very small businesses and individuals are providing opportunities for domain registration growth through developing websites to enable e-commerce. For very small businesses, that is those with up to five employees, there are large numbers that have yet to take advantage of the digital economy, even though most of them know they’re missing out on potential customers according to recent research.

    And on individuals, there has been a significant increase, albeit from a low base, in registration numbers for those pointing person domain names to social media sites such as Facebook and LinkedIn.

    Research published in Verisign’s most recent Domain Name Industry Brief for the second quarter of 2015 showed the growth of .com and .net domains redirecting to popular social media and e-commerce sites compared to the first quarter has been 13 percent for Facebook, 16 percent for LinkedIn, seven percent for Tumblr and 11 percent for Etsy.

    But it’s very small businesses where great opportunities lie for e-commerce. Over half (59%) in a recent survey said they don’t yet have their own website and domain name. The survey looked at 4,000 very small businesses in Australia, Brazil, Canada, India, Mexico, Turkey, United Kingdom and the United States. It also found a third (35%) said they viewed their company as just too small to warrant a website. But many also they understood that they placed themselves at a competitive disadvantage by not having their own website.

    There are also differences between older and newer very small businesses. Newly established businesses were nearly twice as likely to plan to create a website as their older counterparts (72 percent in business three or less years compared to 42 percent of those in business four or more. And one person operations were the lease likely to be planning a website with two in five (42%) planning a website compared to two-thirds (65%) of those with two to five staff members.

    Opportunities await. Individuals and very small businesses are showing that they are important customers when it comes to domain name registration and website development, with business knowing it is important for their future.

    Author: David Goldstein
  • 2015-10-09 - New gTLDs - Sunrise starts

    The Sunrise period of these new gTLDs starts next week.

    October 15, 2015 - November 14, 2015:
    .八卦 (xn--45q11c, Chinese for "gossip")

    October 15, 2015 - November 15, 2015:
    .BROKER 

    The following Sunrise phase will end soon:

    until October 10, 2015:   
    .STUDY

    Author: Julia Zang
  • 2015-10-05 - Domain Registrations Climb To 296 Million With New gTLDs Buoyant

    There were now 296 million domains registered across the world at the end of June according to the latest Domain Name Industry Brief from Verisign with the 300 millionth domain likely to be reached around the end of 2015.

    Registrations grew by 2.2 million domains, or 0.8 percent, in the second quarter and 16.4 million, or 5.9 percent, for the 12 months to the end of June.

    But growth in registrations across all TLDs isn’t as stellar as it once was. Registrations markedly slowed when compared to the first quarter when six million domains were added to the base of registered domain names. And it was also a marked slowdown compared to the same quarter in 2014 when registrations grew 1.4 percent or four million and 7.2 percent when compared to the 12 months to the end of June 2014.

    One of the key observations when looking at registration statistics in the DNIB and on RegistrarStats.com is that the surge in registrations in new gTLDs over the last year and a half has been at the expense of a number of mostly pre-existing gTLDs such as .net, .tel, .info, .biz, .mobi and .us. One thing in common across these TLDs is their decline began or accelerated upon the introduction of new gTLDs.

    While new gTLDs currently only accounted for two percent of all registrations or 5.8 million as of the end of June they now number eight million with registrations continuing to be buoyant, particularly as more new gTLDs become available. The last million domains in the new gTLDs were registered in just under two months. Of these, at the end of June .xyz accounted for 13.7 percent of this 5.8 million, making it still by far the largest. And it now has over 1.154 million registrations.

    One observation that has become apparent is that generic terms are the most popular. Strings such as .xyz, .top, .science and .club are among the twelve most popular new gTLDs when it comes to registration numbers with .nyc (New York City) coming in thirteenth with almost 85,000 registrations and then .london (18th and 69,700 registrations) and .berlin (20th and 68,600). The only other gTLD in the top 20 that is not a generic term is .ovh with over 70,000 registrations, around 99.9 percent seemingly registered by the company. The remaining three by ICANN. And the only non-English or city gTLD among the top 20 is .网址 (website), which is third with 371,800 registrations.

    On gTLDs, .com is obviously still the largest with Verisign reporting approximately 133.5 million .com and .net domain names, a 3.1 percent increase year over year. But this increase is solely at the hands of .com as .net registrations have stabilised at around the 15 million registrations mark, down from a peak of 15.2 million around a year ago.

    Of ccTLDs the largely free .tk (Tokelau) ccTLD is still the largest while second remains .de (Germany) which recently passed the 16 million registrations mark. Rounding out the top ten ccTLDs were cn (China), .uk (United Kingdom), .ru (Russian Federation), .nl (Netherlands), .eu (European Union), .br (Brazil), .au (Australia) and .fr (France).

    Author: David Goldstein
  • 2015-10-02 - New gTLDs - Sunrise starts

    The Sunrise period of these new gTLDs starts next week.

    October 8, 2015 - November 8, 2015:
    .TRADING, .SPREADBETTING, and .CFD

    The following Sunrise phases will end soon:

    until October 5, 2015:
    .GAME

    until October 6, 2015:
    .CORSICA

    Author: Julia Zang
  • 2015-10-01 - .?? (.GROUP): Chinese TLD available now!

    You can now register domain names under the Chinese IDN TLD .集团 (= .XN--3BST00M, .GROUP). The TLD would like to give affiliated groups and large corporations an additional name space for the Chinese market. ASCII strings as well as Traditional and Simplified Chinese characters are supported.

    Author: Julia Zang
  • 2015-09-25 - New gTLDs - Sunrise starts

    The Sunrise period of these new gTLD starts next week:

    October 1, 2015 - October 31, 2015:
    .信息 (xn--vuq861b, Chinese for "information")

    October 1, 2015 - November 30, 2015:
    .KYOTO

    The following Sunrise phase will end soon:

    until September 28, 2015:
    .ABOGADO and .LAW

    Author: Jasmina Meiser
  • 2015-09-23 - DNS interface - Did you know ...

    After a change in our DNS interface to a database-driven system - you now have the opportunity to configure DNS changes in a zone, without publishing them directly? Only by selecting "publish" and thereby confirming the changes will your new changes be published. This extra step makes zone changes much safer. If the zone contains still unpublished entries, you will receive a notice within the Brandshelter interface reminding you of your unpublished changes.

    This enhancement has already been integrated into the interface and is now available.

    Author: Julia Zang
  • 2015-09-21 - New gTLDs - Sunrise starts

    The Sunrise period of these new gTLD starts next week:

    September 22, 2015 - October 22, 2015:
    .SRL and .健康 (xn--nyqy26a, Chinese for "healthy")
     
    September 23, 2015 - November 17, 2015:
    .EARTH

    Author: Jasmina Meiser
  • 2015-09-18 - .SAARLAND: Release of further 2-character domains

    The .SAARLAND registry released another part of 2-character .SAARLAND domain names. These domain names include country-code domains (ccTLDs) and 2-character terms that are generally blocked by ICANN. A list of these domain names can be found here.

    The Sunrise period offers right holders the opportunity to apply for .SAARLAND domain names that match their brands or equivalent law. Rights holders with TMCH registration are entitled to participate in the Sunrise A; holders of similar rights from the Saarland, for example officially registered companies, associations and statutory corporations are entitled to participate in the Sunrise B.

    If multiple applications for a domain name have been successfully validated, this time Sunrise B applications have priority over Sunrise A applications. If there are multiple valid Sunrise applications in a category, the allocation is determined by a closed auction between the eligible applicants. Valid Sunrise applications have priority over all those from the other launch phases.

    Launch Schedule:
    Sunrise: until September 30, 2015
    General Availability (GA): As of October 8

    Author: Julia Zang
  • 2015-09-11 - Chehadé Leads ICANN Through Transitions, Transparency And Accountability

    Fadi Chehadé’s term as President and Chief Executive Officer of ICANN is coming to an end, with his surprise announcement in August that when his current term ends in 2016 he will move to the private sector to take on a number of part time roles including one as Senior Advisor on Digital Strategy for ABRY Partners.

    Chehadé’s impact has largely been positive on ICANN following the often chaotic and ineffective leadership of his predecessor, although unsurprisingly in such a high profile position with competing stakeholders he hasn’t pleased everyone.

    His leadership of the organisation transitioning the NTIA's stewardship of the IANA functions to the global internet community through the IANA transition will probably be his major accomplishment and has been well supported. Although with the latest announcement from the US government that they will extend the current arrangement for ICANN to manage the IANA functions for at least one year, Chehadé won’t be around to see the fruits of his labours. The US government is keen to step away from its role as a self-appointed overseer of the IANA’s functions. Should the transition go ahead, the IANA functions would be managed by an independent body of stakeholders from around the world including academics plus business and government representatives and it is a process Chehadé has been successfully driving and encouraging input from as wide a range of stakeholders as possible.

    But Chehadé has also been working on reform of the organisation and making it more accountable. While the idea of making ICANN more accountable and transparent has been welcomed, its implementation has not been without concerns. These changes are ongoing and some are now part of the demands of the US government as part of its goal to transition the IANA stewardship to the internet community.

    Chehadé has also been driving organisational changes to make ICANN more accountable and transparent with a management style that seeks to be inclusive of all stakeholders. Some of the major changes include a new website that is more user-friendly and makes information more readily available, including a key performance indicator dashboard to track ICANN’s progress meeting its strategic objectives and related goals. Under Chehadé ICANN has opened additional offices around the world in Singapore, Istanbul, Beijing, Geneva, Montevideo and Seoul. Even the idea of reforming the ICANN meeting schedule to reduce costs and enhance the policy process, as well as enhancing the focus of attendees, has been driven by Chehadé.

    When Chehadé leaves ICANN, the organisation will be in a much better state than when he joined. It won’t be perfect, but it will be a much more transparent and accountable organisation that will not be so US-centric, with a goal of better reflecting the internet’s diversity.

    Author: David Goldstein
  • 2015-09-04 - New gTLDs - Sunrise starts

    The Sunrise period of this new gTLD starts next week:

    September 7, 2015 - November 9, 2015:
    .SWISS

    The following Sunrise phases will end soon:

    until September 5, 2015:
    .XIN

    until September 7, 2015:
    .MEN

    until September 11, 2015:
    .TICKETS

    Author: Julia Zang
  • 2015-09-02 - Donuts starts 13th round of NXD domain name release

    Donuts released NXD domain names of the 13th round.
     
    The TRAVEL group includes the following TLDs: .VACATIONS, .VIAJES, .REISEN, .VOYAGE, .HOLIDAY, .CRUISES, .FLIGHTS, .DATING, .EVENTS, and .SINGLES.

    Author: Julia Zang
  • 2015-09-01 - .HAMBURG: Limited to eligible registrants

    .HAMBURG is a so-called "community-based" top level domain. Registrations of domain names under this TLD are limited to eligible registrants of the .HAMBURG community and are subject to specific rules for the use of the domain.

    Author: Julia Zang
  • 2015-08-28 - New gTLDs - Sunrise starts

    The Sunrise period of these new gTLDs starts next week:

    September 1, 2015 - October 1, 2015:
    .SEX

    September 1, 2015 - October 9, 2015:
    .网店 (xn--hxt814e, Chinese for "shop")

    September 3, 2015 - October 6, 2015:
    .PYC (xn--p1acf, Cyrillic abbreviation for "Russian")

    The following Sunrise phases will end soon:

    until August 30, 2015:
    .SKI

    until September 3, 2015:
    .RENT

    Author: Julia Zang
  • 2015-08-27 - Donuts starts 12th round of NXD domain name release

    Donuts released NXD domain names of the 12th round.
     
    The FINANCIAL group includes the following TLDs: .CAPITAL, .EXCHANGE, .FINANCIAL, .LIMITED, .CASH, .FUND, .INVESTMENTS, .CREDITCARD, .CLAIMS, .CREDIT, .ACCOUNTANTS, .FINANCE, .INSURE, .LOANS, .TAX, and .REPORT.

    Author: Julia Zang
  • 2015-08-26 - New gTLDs – Submit binding pre-orders now

    Binding pre-orders are now open for the following TLDs.

    .ABOGADO

    For lawyers and law firms.
    Sunrise: until September 28, 2015
    General Availability (GA): as of October 12,2015

    .COLLEGE
    For colleges, profs and students.
    Landrush: until September 22, 2015
    Early Access Program (EAP): September 22 to September 28, 2015
    General Availability (GA): as of September 29, 2015

    .CORSICA
    For the Corsican community.
    Sunrise: until October 6, 2015
    Limited Registration Period (CORSICA-LRP): from October 8 until November 25, 2015
    Landrush: from November 30 until January 15, 2016
    General Availability (GA): as of January 19, 2016

    .COURSES
    For online courses.
    Sunrise: until September 13, 2015
    General Availability (GA): as of September 23, 2015

    .FILM
    For the movie industry.
    Sunrise: until October 3, 2015
    Landrush: until October 3, 2015
    General Availability (GA): as of October 6, 2015

    .KRD
    For Kurdistan.
    Sunrise: until October 4, 2015
    Landrush: from October 7, 2015 to August 2, 2016
    General Availability (GA): as of August 3, 2016

    .LAW
    For lawyers and law firms.
    Sunrise: until September 28, 2015
    General Availability (GA): as of October 12,2015

    .LIVE
    For online communication.
    Sunrise: until October 17, 2015
    Early Access Program (EAP): from October 21 until October 28, 2015
    General Availability (GA): as of October 28, 2015

    .LOTTO
    For lotteries.
    General Availability (GA): as of September 8, 2015

    .MEN
    For men’s interests.
    General Availability (GA): as of September 16, 2015

    .MIAMI
    For residents, visitors, companies, and fans.
    Sunrise: until September 18, 2015
    General Availability (GA): as of October 2, 2015

    .RENT
    For rentals.
    General Availability (GA): as of Septmber 24, 2015

    .SEX
    For the adult entertainment industry.
    Sunrise: until October 1, 2015
    Sunrise-B: from October 5 until October 30, 2015
    Domain Matching Phase: from October 5 until October 30, 2015
    General Availability (GA): as of November 4, 2015

    .SKI
    For the ski sports community.
    General Availability (GA): as of September 8, 2015

    .STUDIO
    For artists.
    Sunrise: until October 17, 2015
    Early Access Program (EAP): from October 21 until October 28, 2015
    General Availability (GA): as of October 28, 2015

    .STUDY
    For publishing academic publications.
    Sunrise: until October 10, 2015
    General Availability (GA): as of October 14, 2015

    .TICKETS
    For entertainment, travel, and sport events.
    Sunrise: until September 11, 2015
    Early Access Program (EAP): from September 14 until September 21, 2015
    General Availability (GA): as of September 21, 2015

    Author: Julia Zang
  • 2015-08-21 - New gTLDs - Sunrise starts

    There will be no Sunrise starts of new gTLDs next week.

    The following Sunrise phases will end soon:

    until August 22, 2015:
    .MBA and .FYI

    Author: Julia Zang
  • 2015-08-21 - .KOELN/.COLOGNE: Launch of two-character ASCII labels

    The NetCologne GmbH launches .KOELN and .COLOGNE two-character ASCII labels in September.

    The launch will start with an Exclusive Registration Period on September 7, 2015. This period allows anyone registered in the Trademark Clearinghouse as a trademark rights holder and presenting a valid SMD file a preferential registration of so far blocked domain names formed from the mark designation.

    The following Exclusive Limited Registration Period allows the City of Cologne priority registration of so far blocked domain names - as holder of all rights and title in the TLD designation ".COLOGNE" - or for other public bodies, in particular for the City's subordinate bodies and professional organisations and chambers ("Reserved Domain Names") and (future) Domain Holders priority registration of so far blocked domain names if they can demonstrate a special bond to the City of Cologne.

    The General Availablity will start on September 17, 2015

    Author: Julia Zang
  • 2015-08-19 - Donuts starts 11th round of NXD domain name release

    Today, the 11th round of NXD domain name release will start.
     
    The HEALTHCARE group includes the following TLDs: .HEALTHCARE, .FITNESS, .VISION, .CARE, .CLINIC, .SURGERY, and .DENTAL.

    Author: Julia Zang
  • 2015-08-19 - Could Google's Use of ALPHABET.XYZ Be a Game Changer For New gTLDs

    The announcement last week that Google was restructuring with its parent body to be called Alphabet that will use the domain name alphabet.xyz has seen a large increase in .xyz registrations.

    By far the largest of the new gTLDs when it comes to registration numbers with over 1.2 million domains registered – over 800,000 more than .网址 (website) – the .xyz gTLD saw registrations grow 61,415 for the week to 17 August compared to 32,689 for the previous week to 10 August.

    There was also worldwide press coverage of the announcement in many languages and many reports mentioned the use of the alphabet.xyz domain

    So the awareness certainly helped boost registration numbers in the short term, and it also led to Microsoft having some fun registering abc.wtf, which redirects users to its Bing website.

    While only time will tell what an impact this will have, Daniel Negari, who founded .XYZ, the registry operator for the gTLD, told Wired he believes it could be a game changer.

    Negari said the surprise news about Alphabet may dispel concerns about search rankings and shift the thinking about gTLDs. “Obviously, Google believes in it if they’re rebranding on .xyz,” he told Wired after the news of Alphabet and its new URL broke. “This is the ultimate validation.”

    Negari had previously told Wired “we end the alphabet in ‘xyz’ and we should end domain names the same way.” After Google’s announcement Negari said “I guess now Google ends Alphabet with xyz, too.”

    One reason for Google looking to one of the new gTLDs was alphabet.com was already taken. The domain is owned by motoring giant BMW and they’ve said they don’t intend to sell it. But in the near future Google will have their very own .google gTLD and how they will use it, well, that’s something for which time will also tell.

    Author: David Goldstein
  • 2015-08-14 - New gTLDs - Sunrise starts

    The Sunrise period of these new gTLDs starts next week:

    August 18, 2015 - October 17, 2015:
    .STUDIO and .LIVE

    The following Sunrise phases will end soon:

    until August 15, 2015:
    .MOVIE, .FANS, .COUPONS, and .SOCCER

    until August 17, 2015:
    .ONLINE

    until August 21, 2015:
    .LOTTO

    Author: Julia Zang
  • 2015-08-12 - Donuts starts 10th round of NXD domain name release

    Today, the 10th round of NXD domain name release will start.
     
    The SERVICES group includes the following TLDs: .CAB, .LIMO, .PLUMBING, .LIGHTING, .FLORIST, .CATERING, .MARKETING, and .CLEANING.

    Author: Julia Zang
  • 2015-08-11 - .??: .TRADEMARK for the Chinese market

    In January, the .商标 registry obtained its approval from the Chinese Ministry of Industry and Information Technology to operate registry services in China. To date, there are still only a few more than a dozen new gTLDs to have received this approval.

    The .商标 Domain (Meaning “.trademark” in Simplified Chinese; Pronounced: Shang Biao) is a Chinese IDN that is the first domain extension to explicitly and accurately express a trademark holder’s right online through a domain name. Currently, close to 20% of our registrations come from non-Chinese Fortune 500 companies, well known technology companies, famous global brands and small-medium sized businesses with existing or future business interests in China.

    Author: Julia Zang
  • 2015-08-07 - New gTLDs - Sunrise starts

    There will be no Sunrise starts of new gTLDs next week.

    The following Sunrise phases will end soon:

    until August 8, 2015:
    .DOG, .THEATER, .RUN, .TAXI, and .HOCKEY

    Author: Julia Zang
  • 2015-08-06 - TMCH - Did you know ...

    ... that companies and individuals are able to protect their trademarks with the Trademark Clearinghouse (TMCH) in the new gTLDs? The verification of trademark information by the TMCH will support trademark holder's rights protection.

    BrandShelter supports you in data transmission!

    Please contact our team to receive further information.

    Author: Julia Zang
  • 2015-08-05 - Donuts starts 9th round of NXD domain name release

    Today, the 9th round of NXD domain name release will start.
     
    The BUILDING group includes the following TLDs: .SUPPLIES, .CONTRACTORS, .BUILDERS, .SUPPLY, .TOOLS, .EQUIPEMENT, .CONSTRUCTION, .REPAIR, .WORKS, .KITCHEN, .GLASS, .SOLAR, and .PARTS.

    Author: Julia Zang
  • 2015-07-31 - New gTLDs - Sunrise starts

    The Sunrise period of these new gTLDs starts next week:

    August 3, 2015 - September 3, 2015:
    .RENT

    August 3, 2015 - October 6, 2015:
    .CORSICA

    August 6, 2015 - September 5, 2015:
    .XIN

    August 6, 2015 - October 5, 2015:
    .GAME

    The following Sunrise phases will end soon:

    until August 3, 2015:
    .LOAN, .DOWNLOAD, .ACCOUNTANT, .WIN, and .RACING

    Author: Julia Zang
  • 2015-07-31 - .BERLIN: 60.000 valuable domain released

    On July 21, 2015, dotBERLIN released about 60,000 valuable domain names including some top keywords from various branches. Examples: netbook.berlin, frisur.berlin, incentivereisen.berlin, osterhase.berlin, luftballonshop.berlin, and pizzaboy.berlin.

    For registration of those domains, the existing registration policies and regular prices apply. The registration takes place on a "first come, first served" basis.

    Author: Julia Zang
  • 2015-07-29 - Donuts starts 8th round of NXD domain name release

    Today, the 8th round of NXD domain name release will start.
     
    The PROPERTY group includes the following TLDs: .CONDOS, .HOUSE, .ESTATE, .LAND, .PROPERTIES, .RENTALS, .VILLAS, .MAISON, .FARM, .CITY, .COMMUNITY, .TOWN, .LEASE, and .CAMP.

    Author: Julia Zang
  • 2015-07-27 - Donuts TLDs: DPML and overview of launch dates

    BrandShelter offers trademark owners an additional service by the Donuts Registry to prevent cybersquatting, the so-called Domains Protected Marks List (DPML). DPML enables brand owners to block their trademarks from registration at the second level across all Donuts TLDs at a fraction of what it would cost to defensively register the terms in all of Donuts TLDs. Our website lists further information about DPML.

    Almost every week the Donuts registry opens up a new launch round. You can submit binding pre-orders for all launch phases. For further information, please contact the BrandShelter team.  The following new Donuts TLDs are in the launch process:

    ROUND 49: .TEAM, .JEWELRY, and .SHOW
    Early Access Program (EAP): July 22 to July 29,2015
    General Availability (GA): as of July 29, 2015

    ROUND 50: .DOG, .THEATER, .TAXI, .HOCKEY, and .RUN
    Sunrise: until August 8, 2015
    Early Access Program (EAP): August 12 to August 19,2015
    General Availability (GA): as of August 19, 2015

    ROUND 51: .MOVIE, .COUPONS, and .SOCCER
    Sunrise: until August 15, 2015
    Early Access Program (EAP): August 19 to August 26,2015
    General Availability (GA): as of August 26, 2015

    ROUND 52: .FYI and .MBA
    Sunrise: until August 22, 2015
    Early Access Program (EAP): August 26 to September 2,2015
    General Availability (GA): as of September 2, 2015

    A complete overview of the launch phases for all previously launched Donuts TLDs can be found here.

    Author: Julia Zang
  • 2015-07-24 - New gTLDs - Sunrise starts

    The Sunrise period of these new gTLDs starts next week:

    July 28, 2015 - September 28, 2015:
    .ABOGADO and .LAW

    The following Sunrise phase will end soon:

    until July 31, 2015:
    .LOL

    Author: Julia Zang
  • 2015-07-22 - Donuts starts 7th round of NXD domain name release

    Today, the 7th round of NXD domain name release will start.
     
    The .SHOPPING group includes the following TLDs: .DIRECT, .CHEAP, .DEALS, .TIENDA, .BARGAINS, .DISCOUNT, .GRATIS, .GIFTS, and .BOUTIQUE.

    Author: Julia Zang
  • 2015-07-21 - New gTLDs: Already available

    The introduction process of new gTLDs is progressing. For a selection of new TLDs that are already available, please see the article below. For more information about already available new gTLDs, please see here.

    .ADULT
    For adult entertainment.

    .APARTMENTS
    For renters and landlords.

    .BINGO
    For players.

    .CASINO
    For Casinos.

    .CHAT
    For chats.

    .DATE
    For the online dating community.

    .FAITH
    For believers worldwide.

    .FOOTBALL
    For football players, coaches and clubs.

    .IRISH
    For Irish companies, products and people.

    .MARKETS
    For trading and businesses.

    .ONE
    For special opportunities.

    .PORN  
    For pornographic websites.

    .REVIEW
    For the exchange of views.

    .SCHOOL
    For students, teachers and schools.

    .STYLE
    For trend-setters.

    .SUCKS
    For discussions.

    .TENNIS
    For tennis players, coaches and clubs.

    .TIROL
    For the Austrian region Tirol.

    Author: Julia Zang
  • 2015-07-16 - Limited support availability on July 17

    Due to an internal event, our team is only limited available on Friday, July 17. This can lead to delays in answering telephone calls and e-mails.

    We apologize for any inconvenience and appreciate your understanding.

    Author: Julia Zang
  • 2015-07-16 - New gTLDs - Sunrise starts

    The Sunrise period of these new gTLDs starts next week:

    July 20, 2015 - September 18, 2015:
    .MIAMI

    July 22, 2015 - August 21, 2015:
    .LOTTO

    The following Sunrise phases will end soon:

    until July 18, 2015:
    .SHOW, .TEAM, and .JEWELRY

    until July 24, 2015:
    .TECH

    Author: Julia Zang
  • 2015-07-15 - Donuts starts 6th round of NXD domain name release

    Today, the 6th round of NXD domain name release will start.
     
    The FOODS & GOODS group includes the following TLDs: .RESTAURANT, .PIZZA, .COFFEE, .RECIPES, .FISH, .DIAMONDS, .CLOTHING, .WATCH, .SHOES, .BIKE, .FURNITURE, .TOYS, and .CARDS.

    Author: Julia Zang
  • 2015-07-15 - .TAIPEI: Re-opening of the launch process

    The registry resumed the launch process for the city TLD .TAIPEI (Taiwan). ASCII strings as well as Traditional and Simplified Chinese characters are supported.

    New launch schedule for .TAIPEI (Sunrise is completed):
    EAP1: July 23 until July 31, 2015
    EAP2: August 6 until August 14, 2015
    EAP3: August 18 until August 26, 2015
    EAP4: August 27 until September 2, 2015
    General Availability (GA): As of September 9, 2015

    Author: Julia Zang
  • 2015-07-10 - New gTLDs - Sunrise starts

    The Sunrise period of this new gTLD starts next week:

    July 13, 2015 - September 11, 2015:
    .TICKETS

    Author: Julia Zang
  • 2015-07-08 - Donuts starts 5th round of NXD domain name release

    Today, the 5th round of NXD domain name release will start.
     
    The EDUCATION group includes the following TLDs: EDUCATION, .ACADEMY, .UNIVERSITY, .SCHULE, .TIPS, .FOUNDATION, .EXPERT, .GURU, .TRAINING, .INSTITUTE and .SUPPORT.

    Author: Julia Zang
  • 2015-07-06 - Privacy Advocates Aghast At ICANN Proposal To Reform WHOIS

    ICANN has been seeking comment on proposals to reform WHOIS that would see all “commercial” domain name registrants forced to reveal their contact details. The move has come about, some say, at the behest of the Hollywood entertainment studios so they can easily find those they believe are infringing copyright.

    The proposals are in recommendations from a report titled Initial Report on the Privacy and Proxy Services Accreditation Issues Policy Development Process that was open for public comment until 7 July. One of the questions asked was if “domains used for online financial transactions for commercial purpose should be ineligible for privacy and proxy [P/P] registrations.” And it wants to know why or why not respondents think so.

    The paper also requests comments on whether “it would be useful to adopt a definition of ‘commercial’ or ‘transactional’ to define those domains for which P/P service registrations should be disallowed? If so, what should the definition(s) be?”

    Additional issues canvassed include what measures should be taken to ensure contactability and responsiveness of providers along with should “full WHOIS contact details for ICANN-accredited privacy/proxy service providers be required?” How to deal with websites with malicious or illegal content is also addressed.

    Commenting on the proposals, one advocacy group, IP Justice, noted in an open letter to ICANN that: “This proposal does not respect the privacy rights of Internet users, who have a fundamental right to privacy under numerous international treaties, national constitutions, and other legal instruments throughout the world. Article 29 Working Party has repeatedly informed ICANN of its policy’s divergence from international law, citing chapter and verse of the many violations, to no effect on ICANN.”

    Another privacy advocate outraged by the proposals is the Electronic Frontier Foundation. The EFF gives an example of “a free community website for transgender authors” that currently uses a proxy registration service keeping the registrant’s details private. The EFF asks whether such a website could be considered commercial, and if so under the proposals would the registrant be forced to reveal their contact details.

    The EFF also notes the proposal is being pushed by US entertainment companies, having told the US Congress earlier this year that domain registration privacy should only be allowed in limited circumstances.

    Author: David Goldstein
  • 2015-07-06 - .REISE was auctioned

    .REISE (journey / travel in German) is the first live gTLD that were sold at an auction.

    On June 30, 2015, the .REISE Shared Registry System moved from the current dotReise GmbH to the new operator Donuts. As a result, the registration restrictions could be relaxed, so there would be no requirement anymore to be a member of the tourism industry in order to register a .REISE domain.

    Author: Julia Zang
  • 2015-07-03 - New gTLDs - Sunrise starts

    The Sunrise period of this new gTLD starts next week:

    July 9, 2015 - September 7, 2015:

    .MEN

    These Sunrise phases will end soon:

    until July 4, 2015:

    .NEWS, .CAFE, and .EXPRESS

    until July 5, 2015:

    .LOVE

    until July 6, 2015:

    .SITE

    Author: Julia Zang
  • 2015-07-02 - .SO: New policies

    On July 8, 2015 the .SO Shared Registry System will be migrated to the Cloud Registry platform and operation will be transferred to the Somali Network Information Center (SONIC).

    In conjunction with the move, the registry will implement new policies that will significantly modify registration eligibility. At the same time, the registry will enhance abusive use monitoring and enforcement of acceptable use policies.

    Author: Julia Zang
  • 2015-07-01 - Donuts starts fourth round of NXD domain name release

    Today, the fourth round of NXD domain name release will start.
     
    This includes the following TLDs: .COMPUTER, .EMAIL, .CODES, .SYSTEMS, .TECHNOLOGY, .DOMAINS, and .DIRECTORY.

    Author: Julia Zang
  • 2015-06-26 - New gTLDs - Sunrise starts

    The Sunrise period of this new gTLD starts next week:

    July 1, 2015 - August 30, 2015:
    .SKI

    These Sunrise phases will end soon:

    until June 27, 2015:    
    .TOURS, .GOLF, .PLUS, and .GOLD

    until June 29, 2015:
    .FAITH, .REVIEW, and .DATE

    Author: Julia Zang
  • 2015-06-24 - Donuts starts third round of NXD domain name release

    Today, the third round of NXD domain name release will start.
     
    The GENERIC & FUN group includes the following TLDs: .COOL, .WTF, .ZONE, .GUIDE, .PLACE, .CENTER, .EXPOSED, .FAIL, .GRIPE, .TODAY, .CHURCH, and .LIFE.

    Author: Julia Zang
  • 2015-06-23 - Heinz in Germany Teaches Brand Owners A Lesson After Letting Domain Name Lapse

    Heinz’s German operations were embarrassed in late May when it was discovered they let a domain name lapse that was used for a competition. It was then quickly registered by a German adult company who promptly put up a pornographic website!

    The competition “Sag’s Mit Heinz” (Say it with Heinz), ran from 2012 to 2014 and included a QR code on tomato ketchup bottles that linked to sagsmitheinz.de. But when the competition finished Heinz let the domain’s registration lapse and shortly afterwards the adult company registered the domain.

    Then in late May a German man, Daniel Korell, scanned the QR code and was taken by surprise when he was directed to a porn website rather than the competition website. The porn site seems now to have been taken down.

    Korell contacted Heinz through their Heinz Tomato Ketchup Facebook page with Heinz responding that as the bottle was old they couldn’t control what was displayed on the page.

    However Korell seemed a little more au fait than Heinz with the issues involved. He responded telling Heinz that even though the competition had finished, bottles of the ketchup were still in many households. And that it doesn’t cost the earth to register a .de domain. He concluded saying it was “just plain embarrassing.”

    Heinz seemed to grasp this idea and as a result have offered him a personalised bottle of their tomato ketchup!

    It’s a reminder for brand owners to consider the repercussions when they deliberately let a domain name lapse. They need to think about the consequences of the domain getting into a competitor’s hands or into the hands of a registrant that could be “just plain embarrassing”.

    Luckily for Korell, he believes “he’ll probably suffer no permanent damage!”

    Author: David Goldstein
  • 2015-06-19 - New gTLDs - Sunrise starts

    The Sunrise period of these new gTLDs starts next week:

    June 23, 2015 - August 22, 2015:
    .MBA and .FYI

    Author: Julia Zang
  • 2015-06-18 - Almost Half Global Population Aware of New gTLDs Grows: ICANN Survey

    The number of people around the world aware of at least one of the new gTLDs is approaching half (46%) according to a survey conducted by Nielsen on behalf of ICANN earlier this year.

    Focussing on the new gTLDs with the greatest number of registrations in January – .email, .photography, .link, .guru, .realtor, .club, .xyz and .berlin – the survey also found 65 percent of respondents that were aware of a new gTLD had also visited a website using one of these new gTLDs.

    The survey also looked at some of the legacy gTLDs. Of those, as would be expected, .com, .net and .org led awareness with nearly eight in ten (79%) respondents reporting knowledge of one of these gTLDs. These TLDs also had relatively high visitation, with an average of 71 percent of respondents reporting they have visited a website using one of those domains.

    The survey also found consumers had a high level of trust with entities that offer domain names. Of the respondents around the world, 72 percent reported high levels of satisfaction with registrars and resellers. These high trust levels were linked to a perception that the industry will take precautions, give consumers what they think they're getting and screen companies or individuals who register for certain domain names.

    Additionally, the results show trust among new gTLDs is lower than legacy TLDs, which is consistent with other survey findings, but growing: one in two (49 percent) on average reported they trusted the sample of new gTLDs provided in the survey.

    Abusive internet behaviour, including spam, malware, phishing, and cybersquatting remain an issue for Internet users. At least three quarters of the respondents (74 percent) are familiar with malware, phishing or stolen credentials. Cybersquatting is the only bad behaviour the majority are unfamiliar with — just over 1 in 3 (37 percent) reported awareness.

    Among other findings the survey also found registering a domain name is not hard, but could be easier with 53 percent reporting that registering a domain is either "very easy" or "somewhat easy" and roughly half want the process of registering a website to be less complicated (50%), cheaper (55%) and quicker (49%).

    The global study surveyed 6,144 consumers aged 18 and over representing Asia, Europe, Africa, North America and South America. It was administered in 18 languages and drawn from 24 countries. The research, conducted between 2-19 February, 2015, was designed to create a meaningful baseline of data on consumer attitudes and will be followed by a second survey approximately one year later. This will also be a key input to a team set to be reviewing competition, consumer trust and consumer choice in the domain name system later this year.

    More information can be found here.

    Author: David Goldstein
  • 2015-06-17 - Donuts starts second round of NXD domain name release

    Today, the second round of NXD domain name release will start.

    The Business group includes the following TLDs: .ENTERPRISES, .MANAGEMENT, .INTERNATIONAL, .INDUSTRIES, .SERVICES, .PARTNERS, .HOLDINGS, .ASSOCIATES, .SOLUTIONS, .VENTURES, .SARL, .COMPANY, .CAREERS, and .AGENCY.

    Author: Julia Zang
  • 2015-06-16 - .IN: Sunrise of IDN's is running

    In 2014, the National Internet eXchange of India (NIXI), the manager of the .भारत registry,  has launched registrations of .भारत Internationalized Domain Names (IDNs) in the Devanagari script. As of now, NIXI accepts applications for registrations in Bengali, Gujarati, Manipuri-Bengali, Punjabi, Tamil, Telugu and Urdu.

    Owners of registered Indian trademarks or service marks who wish to protect their marks will be given the priority to apply for IDNs.

    Sunrise A is open only to trademark or service mark holders who are Indian citizens or Indian registered companies. Applications for Sunrise A can be submitted until July 4, 2015. Sunrise B is open to foreign entities that own Indian trademarks or service marks. Applications for Sunrise B will be accepted from June 22 to July 4, 2015. Following a quiet period from July 4 - 9, 2015, Sunrise C will take place from July 9 - 29, 2015. Proofs of trademark must be received by the registry no later than July 31, 2015.

    The General Availability will begin on August 3, 2015.

    Author: Julia Zang
  • 2015-06-12 - New gTLDs - Sunrise starts

    The Sunrise period of these new gTLDs starts next week:

    June 16, 2015 - August 15, 2015:
    .MOVIE, .FANS, .COUPONS, and .SOCCER

    June 18, 2015 - August 17, 2015:
    .ONLINE

    The following Sunrise phases will end soon:

    until June 17, 2015:
    .BANK and .MARKETS

    until June 19, 2015:
    .SUCKS

    Author: Julia Zang
  • 2015-06-10 - Donuts starts release of NXD domain names

    The release of NXD domain names will be staggered in 13 groups. The first group starts today.

    First group: PHOTOGRAPHY as of June 10, 2015

    This includes the following TLDs: .PHOTOGRAPHY, .CAMERA, .PHOTOS, .GALLERY, .GRAPHICS, .MEDIA, .PICTURES, .PRODUCTIONS, and .DIGITAL.

    Second group: BUSINESS as of June 17, 2015

    This includes the following TLDs: .ENTERPRISES, .MANAGEMENT, .INTERNATIONAL, .INDUSTRIES, .SERVICES, .PARTNERS, .HOLDINGS, .ASSOCIATES, .SOLUTIONS, .VENTURES, .SARL, .COMPANY, .CAREERS, and .AGENCY.

    Third group: GENERIC & FUN as of June 24, 2015

    This includes the following TLDs: .COOL, .WTF, .ZONE, .GUIDE, .PLACE, .CENTER, .EXPOSED, .FAIL, .GRIPE, .TODAY, .CHURCH, and .LIFE.

    For more information, please contact our team.

    Author: Julia Zang
  • 2015-06-05 - New gTLDs - Sunrise starts

    The Sunrise period of this new gTLDs starts next week:

    June 9, 2015 - August 8, 2015:
    .DOG, .THEATER, .RUN, .TAXI, and .HOCKEY

    Author: Julia Zang
  • 2015-05-29 - .SUCKS: Sunrise period has been extended until June 19

    The .SUCKS registry has postponed the launch of the TLD.

    Sunrise is still running until June 19, 2015. The General Availability will start on June 21, 2015.

    Author: Julia Zang
  • 2015-05-29 - New gTLDs - Sunrise starts

    The Sunrise period of this new gTLDs starts next week:

    June 1, 2015 - July 31, 2015:
    .LOL

    June 4, 2015 - August 3, 2015:
    .LOAN, .DOWNLOAD, .ACCOUNTANT, .WIN, and .RACING

    Author: Julia Zang
  • 2015-05-27 - Donuts: Release of 2-character and NXD domains starting June 10

    The Donuts registry is releasing more than one million second level names across its top level domains. These names include two-character labels (including ccTLD combinations) and names previously reserved as part of ICANN's "controlled interruption” program, meant to address the name collision issue. The release of these names will begin on June 10, 2015 and will be staggered in 13 groups.

    The launch of the first group (.PHOTOGRAPHY) will start on June 10, 2015. This includes the following TLDs: .PHOTOGRAPHY, .CAMERA, .PHOTOS, .GALLERY, .GRAPHICS, .MEDIA, .PICTURES, .PRODUCTIONS, and .DIGITAL.

    For more information, please contact our team.

    Author: Julia Zang
  • 2015-05-26 - .SE: Release of one-character domain names on May 27

    The .SE registry has decided to allow registration of .SE domain names with only one character.

    The most attractive domain names will be released through an auction on Tradera from May 28 to June 11. These are j.se, q.se, v.se, å.se, ä.se, ö.se, é.se, ü.se and 0.se - 9.se.

    Other one-character domains are released according to the first-come, first-served principle on May 27 (9:00 UTC) at the regular registration fee. All are IDN domains/characters according to .SE’s official IDN table. Note that hyphen "-.SE" cannot be registered.

    Author: Julia Zang
  • 2015-05-23 - Aspiring British and American Politicians Fail to Secure Key Domains

    Brand protection is a big thing and it applies to companies as well as politicians. And in both the US and UK, some prominent politicians have failed to secure some key domain names in recent weeks.

    In the US, two candidates hoping to seek the Republican nomination to contest the upcoming presidential election found out in different ways how costly it can be.

    Carly Fiorina, the former CEO of HP, announced her bid to be the Republican nominee and immediately found out how embarrassing it can be to neglect a key domain. Fiorina failed to register the carlyfiorina.org domain and it was quickly snapped up by a critic who used it to publicise that 30,000 people were laid off while she was CEO. The domain wasn’t registered until it was obvious she would be throwing her hat in the ring.

    One of her rivals for the Republican nomination also found he’d missed out on a key domain, which proved to be an expensive lesson. Days before launching his bid to be a candidate, Rand Paul used his re-election committee to pay $100,980 to Escrow.com for a “domain name” on 27 March. The domain, randpaul.com, had been used by friends of the campaign, unlike the Fiorina domain. The domain was being used for a pro-Paul website. Previously Paul was using the domain randpaul2016.com, which now redirects to his new domain.

    Meanwhile in the UK, following the recent election and Ed Miliband’s resignation as Labour party leader following their loss, Liz Kendall has thrown her hat into the ring to be the next leader of the party. As part of her candidacy she set up a website using the lizforleader.com domain, but didn’t consider registering lizforleader.co.uk, although she has registered lizforleader.uk which redirects to the .com domain. Instead the neglected domain has been registered to someone more at home with the ruling Conservatives. The website has displayed changing content or changing redirections that is opposed to Labour and supportive of the Conservatives. The website currently has the title “jet fuel can’t melt leadership dreams”.

    Preparation is the key, whether for a politician or brand. When launching a campaign, research and register those key domains to ensure they don’t fall into the hands of competitors!

    Author: David Goldstein
  • 2015-05-22 - New gTLDs - Sunrise starts


    The Sunrise period of this new gTLD starts next week:

    May 25, 2015 - July 24, 2015:
    .TECH

    The following Sunrise phases will end soon:

    until May 23, 2015:
    .CASINO, .FOOTBALL, and .SCHOOL

    until May 28, 2015:    
    .AMSTERDAM

    Author: Julia Zang
  • 2015-05-20 - .SO: Registration stop and price increase for renewals on June 9

    We have been informed of some important changes that will take place in the .SO registry over the coming months.

    On July 8, 2015 the .SO Shared Registry System will be migrated to the Cloud Registry platform and operation will be transferred to the Somali Network Information Center (SONIC). In conjunction with the move, the registry will implement new policies that will significantly modify registration eligibility: Some form of nexus requirements will be implemented and a connection to Somalia will be required. Furthermore, new restrictions on content and usage of .SO domains will be introduced. At the same time, the registry will enhance abusive use monitoring and enforcement of acceptable use policies.

    Ahead of these changes, the registry will freeze new registrations indefinitely and increase the renewal fees.

    Author: Julia Zang
  • 2015-05-18 - .RU: Additional extensions may be required for stating Cyrillic spelling

    The .RU registry has introduced a new provision for domain name registration and contact validation: Following information is additionally required for Russian private persons and companies as of now if the required verification documents contain the respective names in Cyrillic characters

    For Russian private persons:

    • First name in Cyrillic characters
    • Middle name in Cyrillic characters
    • Last name in Cyrillic characters

    For Russian companies:

    • Organization name in Cyrillic characters (min 2 words)
    Author: Dorothea Klein
  • 2015-05-15 - New gTLDs - Sunrise starts

    The Sunrise period of these new gTLDs starts next week:

    May 18, 2015 - June 17, 2015:
    .BANK and .MARKETS

    May 19, 2015 - July 18, 2015:
    .SHOW, .TEAM, and .JEWELRY

    Author: Julia Zang
  • 2015-05-12 - Release of .AU second level domains?

    The operator of the Australian ccTLD .AU, .AU Domain Administration (auDA), examines the registration of second level .AU domains.

    So far, Australian domains can only be registered unter subdomains as .com.au, .id.au, .gov.au, and .nsw.au. The community was asked to express its opinion on the possible release until June 1, 2015.

    Author: Julia Zang
  • 2015-05-11 - Name Ninja Report Shows Many Start-Ups Fail "Radio Test" When Choosing Domains

    Being too creative when choosing a domain name, particularly among start-ups, can cause problems. Such as when telling potential clients the business or even domain name. Choosing a hard-to-spell domain that fails the “Radio Test” is a major problem, according to domain name consulting firm Name Ninja.

    To see how big the problem is, Name Ninja conducted a survey of start-ups participating in the Collision start-up conference in Las Vegas in May. They found 79 percent of the start-ups may not be using the optimal domain name to market their business.

    Further, more than two-thirds (68%) of the start-up domains failed the Radio Test, meaning the names are not spelled the way they sound.

    According to Name Ninja, other start-up domain problems include not having the exact match .com domain or having a .com domain that appends other words to the start-up name.

    “If your start-up is named Fashion Ferret then the optimal domain name is the exact match .com domain FashionFerret.com,” Name Ninja President Bill Sweetman said. “Using anything else is risky because it’s likely to confuse your customers and drive up your marketing costs.”

    But depending on the market, the appropriate ccTLD domain or even new gTLD domain could be just as appropriate. For example, a hotel in Berlin might find a .berlin domain more useful, a .de domain for a chain of German cafés or even a .eu domain for a pan-European business.

    Name Ninja also found that 386 (79%) of the start-up domain names were counterintuitive and likely pose marketing challenges. Only 21 percent of start-up domain names were the most intuitive domain name.

    Author: David Goldstein
  • 2015-05-08 - More than 15 million .DE domains registered

    DENIC, the operator of German ccTLD .DE, has published the domain statistics 2014 for .DE domains. The DENIC domain map shows the regional distribution of .DE domains in Germany.

    About 14.6 million .DE domains were registered in 402 cities and districts of Germany at the target date December 31, 2014. In addition, there are more than one million domains of registrants whose place of residence is abroad. In total, about 15.8 million .DE domains were registered at the end of last year. Domain development in 2014 was slightly slower than in the preceding years and confirmed the East-West divide of .DE domain distribution.

    Author: Julia Zang
  • 2015-05-07 - .HIV is for sale

    The .HIV Registry announced that .HIV is for sale. The auction will take place on June 3-4,2015.

    The .HIV domain is available for general registration since August 26, 2014. It is the only new gTLD with a social purpose. Every click on a registered domain under .HIV triggers a micro-donation (0,1 Cent) to HIV projects.

    Author: Julia Zang
  • 2015-04-22 - New gTLDs: 5 Million Registrations And Counting

    Domain name registrations across the almost 600 new gTLDs passed the five million mark on 9 April according to nTLDstats.com and now number over 5.160 million.

    Going by registration numbers alone, the biggest winner has been .xyz with registrations approaching the 900,000 mark, although certain to dip well below this mark once renewals come due. This is because of a promotion with one registrar where they gave away to .com registrants the equivalent .xyz domain, and this will account for over 300,000 registrations. But even without this, it will still easily be the largest of the gTLDs.

    Next up is the Chinese is .网址 (.website) with 349,600 registrations, but all these domains appear to be registered to the government and the registry.

    Which brings us to one of the biggest success stories of the new gTLD programme - .club. It’s the third largest of the new gTLDs by registration numbers with well over 209,000 registrations, and as the registry boasts, all are paid for.

    It’s a boast also made by Donuts whose 176 gTLDs account for 1.365m registrations, or over one in four (26.46%) of all new gTLD domains registered. The largest Donuts gTLD is .guru with 82,700 registrations, the tenth largest.

    Some of the successes have been the city and regional gTLDs. The .berlin gTLD remains the largest with 156,600 registrations and also the fourth largest gTLD, but they are currently suffering a slight dip as renewals become due. But in June they will face a big hit when up to 90,000 domains given away or sold cheaply in a promotion come up for renewal.

    A number of other city gTLDs have also done well, with success varying largely due to eligibility policies and marketing. The .nyc (New York City) gTLD is the eleventh largest, with 75,500 registrations and eligibility is restricted to New Yorkers, while .london is the thirteenth largest with over 60,700 registrations and no eligibility restrictions. And numbers don’t tell the whole story. Several operators such as .tirol are using theirs as a promotional tool for tourism and business.

    There are seven gTLDs in total with over 100,000 registrations, 95 with over 10,000 and 163 with more than 5,000. And to date there are, from this writer’s counting, 337 gTLDs to have entered General Availability with 230 registrars handling registrations for at least one gTLD.

    But not all gTLDs can ever expect such large numbers. Small cities and organisations haven’t budgeted for such numbers. And there appear to be some gTLDs that just won’t make it.

    One that appears not to have met expectations is .realtor aimed at the North American real estate market. Even though there are 95,800 domains registered, they have all been given away free. Far short of plans to give away 500,000 domains in the first year, in part due to restrictive conditions on what strings could be registered. It seems sometimes even if something is free it’s not worth it.

    Others that would appear to be struggling would be .whoswho with 31 registrations, .rich (66), .संगठन (.organisation - 123), .ltda (153) and .wed (204). But time will tell.

    And where to next. ICANN is already considering what it did well, and didn’t, in the round of applications that is still to be completed. ICANN board member Chris Disspain last August said discussions were likely to take place at an upcoming board meeting.

    “The board will soon start discussing the possibility of opening a second round of applications for new gTLDs,” Disspain said.

    Author: David Goldstein
  • 2015-04-17 - .FR: Multiple year option available as of now

    Afnic has informed us of the new multiple year option for all ccTLDs managed by them.

    Thus it is now possible to register .FR domain names as well as .RE (Reunion Island), .YT (Mayotte), .WF (Wallis and Futuna Islands), .TF (French Southern and Antarctic Territories) and .PM (Saint-Pierre and Miquelon) domain names for a period from one to ten years.

    Author: Dorothea Klein
  • 2015-04-14 - .HAMBURG: Release of 3,500 first and surnames on April 15

    The .HAMBURG registry releases over 3,500 first names and surnames on April 15  (first-come, first-served).

    The list of available names can be downloaded here.

    These domain names are based on the existing registration policies.

    Author: Dorothea Klein
  • 2015-04-13 - "Illicit" .SUCKS To Be Investigated by US and Canadian Regulators

    ICANN has asked US and Canadian regulators to investigate the .sucks gTLD following complaints from its Intellectual Property Constituency and widespread concern from brand owners. The gTLD has attracted concerns over its potential to “bash-a-brand” from disgruntled consumers and other groups.

    The complaint that led to ICANN requesting the U.S. Federal Trade Commission (FTC) and, because Vox Populi is a Canadian enterprise, Canada's Office of Consumer Affairs (OCA), to consider assessing and determining whether or not Vox Populi is violating any of the laws or regulations those agencies enforce came in a letter from the IPC.

    ICANN is also evaluating remedies available to them under the registry agreement. Should Vox Populi not comply with all applicable laws, it may mean it is in breach of its registry agreement allowing ICANN to take action.

    Greg Shatan, president of the IPC, whose letter on 27 March sparked ICANN’s outreach to the FTC and OCA, outlined the concerns of most brand owners. The IPC believes the issue needs to be considered urgently, particularly as the .sucks Sunrise period was slated to open on 30 March, and will run for two months. The IPC notes Vox Populi will charge trademark owners $2,499 and sometimes even more to register domain names in the TMCH Sunrise period. “Vox Populi’s incredibly high fees will prevent many trademark owners from being able to take advantage of the TMCH Sunrise period.”

    The “illicit scheme doesn’t stop there” though according to the IPC. “If a trademark owner decides that it will sit out the Sunrise Period and attempt to register its trademark as a domain name during general availability for $249, it still may be forced to pay at least $2,499. This is because Vox Populi has now introduced its ‘Sunrise Premium’ list. (Despite the name, ‘Sunrise Premium’ pricing applies only during general availability.) If a trademark is on the Sunrise Premium list, it will always be at least $2,499 per year. The Sunrise Premium list is a list of strings compiled by Vox Populi from strings registered or blocked in other TLDs’ sunrise periods.”

    According to the IPC, “Vox Populi’s strategy is obvious–to ensure that those trademark owners who have invested in protecting those trademarks by registering in the TMCH and registering domain names in other sunrise periods, and who are most likely to want to protect their trademarks by registering in .SUCKS, cannot avoid paying at least $2,499 per year, no matter when they register.”

    Author: David Goldstein
  • 2015-04-01 - .TAIPEI: Launch process has been stopped after Sunrise

    Please note that the .TAIPEI registry has postponed the further launch of the city TLD. Sunrise was processed as planned but Landrush/EAP and General Availability have been suspended. The registry targets to re-open the launch phases in Q3 2015.

    Author: Julia Zang
  • 2015-03-30 - Donuts See 7 In 10 Domains Renewed Across Its New gTLDs

    Donuts have seen renewal rates of 70 percent across its new gTLDs after six days of renewals for the first of its 171 gTLDs to have been delegated back in March 2014.

    To date, Donuts has 1.332 million domains registered across these gTLDs – way ahead of CentralNic, the second largest new gTLD registry, with 945,000 domains across 20 gTLDs.

    Donuts have been sharing their experiences on renewals on their blog and as of day five the cumulative renewal rate was 70 percent, or 43,365 domains renewed. This compares to .com and .net whose renewal rates for the third quarter of 2014 were 72.0 percent compared with 72.7 percent for the same quarter in 2013.

    The renewal rates though pleasing aren’t surprising to Donuts. Speaking to Donuts back in November, company co-founder and Executive Vice President Dan Schindler said he was confident there will be high rates of renewals and continuing success. With every Donuts domain paid for, Schindler is confident they will have high renewal rates.

    But among the renewals, there are also variations between gTLDs. In their day six update, Donuts noted that of the 14,538 .bike names registered in the first year, 5,958 have passed through auto-renew and 75.4 percent of those were renewed. Of the 7,594 .VENTURES names registered in the first year, 2,805 have passed through auto-renew so far, and 67.6 percent of those renewed. But Donuts don’t believe price to be an issue.

    Donuts believe more expensive domains will have higher renewal rates, other factors being equal, as the registrants have ascribed more value to those names. It is too early to say whether this will pan out.

    What Donuts have observed though is the relationship between renewal rate and usage. According to Donuts, 30 percent of .bike domains so far have real, multi-page content or redirect to such content, whereas for .ventures that number is 19 percent. .BIKE owners are putting up more content, more quickly, and as a result they are renewing more. Donuts have observed that results for other TLDs in this batch (.clothing, .plumbing, .singles, etc) support the common sense conclusion that TLDs with more usage renew more. The usage rate compares with .com/.net domains who have about a 50 percent usage rate and the 40 million or so .com/.net names that were newly registered in 2014 have a usage rate of 39 percent.

    By way of explanation, Donuts note this doesn’t mean .bike will necessarily have a higher renewal rate than .ventures 12 months from now. It may mean that .bike owners are smaller, newer and more nimble companies than .ventures owners and are therefore publishing content more quickly. Something to keep in mind, for all TLDs, is that end-users tend to be very slow at turning domains into website content. It is not uncommon to see six months delay between domain purchase and website activation.

    Author: David Goldstein
  • 2015-03-27 - New gTLDs - Sunrise starts

    The Sunrise period of this new gTLD starts next week:

    March 30, 2015 - May 29, 2015:
    .SUCKS

    The following Sunrise phases will end soon:

    until March 30, 2015:
    .WEDDING

    until April 1, 2015:
    .PORN and .ADULT

    Author: Julia Zang
  • 2015-03-25 - .CZ: New registration policies and ADR

    Please note that the registry for Czech domain names updated their rules of domain name registration under the ccTLD .CZ. The changes include a new system of Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR).

    For further information, please contact the BrandShelter Team.

    Author: Julia Zang
  • 2015-03-20 - New gTLDs - Sunrise starts

    The Sunrise period of these new gTLDs starts next week:

    March 24, 2015 - May 23, 2015:
    .CASINO, .FOOTBALL, and .SCHOOL

    The following Sunrise phases will end soon:

    until March 21, 2015:
    .TIRES

    until March 27, 2015:
    .FLOWERS

    Author: Julia Zang
  • 2015-03-16 - Postponement of .RIO General Availability

    The .RIO registry has postponed the General Availability of .RIO again.

    According to the registry the issues some registrars faced during sunrise related to Brazilian-specific characteristics like postal code and taxpayer ID are still happening and an overall readiness hasn't yet been achieved. As soon as the scenario becomes different both the registry and ICANN will update the community with a launch date.

    Author: Dorothea Klein
  • 2015-03-12 - New gTLDs - Sunrise starts

    The Sunrise period of these new gTLDs starts next week:

    March 17, 2015 - April 16, 2015:
    .ONG and .NGO 

    March 17, 2015 - April 17, 2015:
    .COLLEGE 

    March 17, 2015 - May 16, 2015:
    .IRISH and .APARTMENTS

    The following Sunrise phases will end soon:

    until March 16, 2015:
    .PHARMACY

    until March 20, 2015:
    .ALSACE

    Author: Julia Zang
  • 2015-03-09 - .UK validation process: Check of the owner information

    The new Nominet Data Quality Policy intends to ensure that only complete (Data completeness check) and correct data (Data validation process) is used for registration. Therefore, Nominet validates the owner information (name / organization, address) of new registrations and modifications. If the owner details can not be validated by the registry the affected registrants will receive a notification.

    For further information, please contact the BrandShelter team.

    Author: Julia Zang
  • 2015-03-06 - New gTLDs - Sunrise starts

    The Sunrise period of these new gTLDs starts next week:

    March 10, 2015 - May 9, 2015:
    .TENNIS, .CHAT, .STYLE, and .BINGO

    The following Sunrise phases will end soon:

    until March 7, 2015:
    .POKER

    until March 11, 2015:
    .OSAKA

    Author: Julia Zang
  • 2015-03-05 - IANA Transition and Accountability Two of ICANN 52's Biggest Talking Points

    ICANN held its 52nd public meeting in Singapore in February with the IANA stewardship transition and accountability being two of the most discussed and important issues, with discussions on the topic causing other issues occasionally being delayed or even cancelled.

    The IANA transition drew support from the Singapore’s Minister of Communications and Information, Dr. Yaacob bin Ibrahim, and former Senior Advisor to President Bill Clinton, Ira Magaziner, who also spoke of the success of the multistakeholder model of internet governance.

    Magaziner spoke to the growth the internet has experienced under the multistakeholder model. “The fact of the matter is the Internet has worked and the growth has been phenomenal and the growth to WiFi, and the growth to mobile, and now the growth to the Internet of things and it has all worked,” said Magaziner. “You see tremendous success coming from this model.”

    ICANN President and CEO, Fadi Chehadé, spoke about ICANN‘s continued prioritization of both maintaining the security, stability and resiliency of the Internet’s Domain Name System (DNS) and reinforcing the multistakeholder model of governance.

    “First, we have continue to strengthen the confidence in our operations,” said Chehadé. “Then we have continue to make sure that our community, our multistakeholder model, is strong. And all of this must continue to be rooted in the global public interest.”

    The German internet association eco attended the meeting and “used the platform of the meeting above all to consult on national guidelines and recommendations for action for the transition of the IANA Stewardship. The objective is to bring a collective German position into the international negotiation process.”

    Coming out of the discussions on the IANA stewardship transition was accountability. It is imperative for the ICANN community to be able to keep ICANN under control as some have described it, but to decide what powers are needed by the community to keep ICANN in check and ensure their voice continues to be heard.

    Discussions on accountability were led by the Cross-Community Working Group on Enhancing ICANN Accountability (CWG-Accountability). As noted in an update by the National Law Review, “the CWG presented several key updates on its work progress, including identifying fundamental purposes of accountability—such as due process, compliance with applicable law and operational performance—as well as various key components and goals of accountability, such as transparency, checks and balances, review and redress, and decision-making independence. The CWG's ultimate goal is to design new accountability mechanisms or improve or incorporate current mechanisms so as to achieve a satisfactory level of accountability of ICANN decision-makers to the community and the public that ICANN is designed to serve.”

    Chehadé also expressed concerns at the amount of work being undertaken by the ICANN community, many of whom do the work voluntarily or on top of their normal day jobs.

    “This community — we’re hearing this from many of your leaders — is reaching a bit of burnout. And we in the staff are responsible to support you better so that we can manage the workload that you’re all feeling,” Chehadé said.

    There was also dismay, some would say outrage, from new gTLD registries after the news that following objections from some of ICANN’s Governmental Advisory Committee the launch of two-character domains in new gTLDs. Prior to the meeting ICANN announced a moratorium on the release of the domains.

    Whois also featured in discussions with ICANN staff and the EWG Process Working Group working together on an Issue Report that “will examine numerous issues related to gTLD registrant data and directory access to that data, including the purposes, uses and users of registrant data; gated versus public access to registrant data; data accuracy and validation needs; data elements, both at the collection and access stages; and privacy issues, including use of privacy and proxy services and compliance with data protection and privacy laws,” according to the National Law Review. A draft is expected in March 2015.

    Author: David Goldstein
  • 2015-03-02 - More than1 Million .ZA registrations

    As the first African country-code top level domain (ccTLD), .ZA (South Africa) reached the one Million registration mark. More than 970,000 domain names are registered under .CO.ZA and the number is increasing every month for a few thousand registrations. In second place, .ORG.ZA follows with more than 28,000 registrations.

    Author: Dorothea Klein
  • 2015-02-27 - New gTLDs - Sunrise starts

    The Sunrise period of these new gTLDs starts next week:

    March 2, 2015 - April 1, 2015:
    .PORN and .ADULT

    The following Sunrise phase will end soon:

    until March 4, 2015:
    .TIROL

    Author: Julia Zang
  • 2015-02-24 - New registry operator: .GW

    The country-code top level domain of Guinea-Bissau (Africa) will be operated by the Portuguese registry DNS.PT. DNS.PT will take over the management, maintenance and registration of .GW domains..GW domains can be registered without any restrictions.

    Author: Julia Zang
  • 2015-02-20 - New gTLDs - Sunrise starts

    The Sunrise period of these new gTLDs starts next week:

    February 24, 2015 - April 25, 2015:
    .SALE and .VIDEO

    February 24, 2015 - April 28, 2015:
    .DESIGN

    The following Sunrise phases will end soon:

    until February 28, 2015:
    .COACH, .MEMORIAL, .MONEY, and .LEGAL

    Author: Julia Zang
  • 2015-02-19 - .NZ: Preferential Registration Eligibility period until March 30

    Domain names are now directly available under New Zealand’s ccTLD .NZ and can be registered on a first-come, first-served basis. Until March 30, 2015, a six-month Preferential Registration Eligibility (PRE) period is launched for registrants that already hold third level .NZ domain names.

    Author: Julia Zang
  • 2015-02-17 - Brand Owners Need To Do More To Protect Against Typosquatting

    Typosquatters aren’t the domain name world’s best friend. In particular trademark owners. But trademark owners aren’t helping themselves in the battle against typosquatters by regularly failing to register domains to protect themselves.

    Typosquatting, described in “A Longitudinal Study Of Typosquatting Abuse”, as “the act of purposefully registering a domain name that is a mistype of a popular domain name” has, the authors note, been known and studied for over 15 years.

    The study was conducted by researchers at the Belgian University of Leuven and Stony Brook University in the US who trawled through 900GB of data from 3,389,137 web pages and 424,278 distinct WHOIS records gathered over a period of seven months. They found that even though 95 percent of the popular domains investigated are actively targeted by typosquatters, only a few trademark owners protect themselves by proactively registering their own typosquatting domains.

    The researchers also found typosquatting domains change hands from typosquatters to legitimate owners and vice versa, and typosquatters vary their monetisation strategy by hosting different types of pages over time. Typosquatters also seek expiring registrations of popular domain names. Further, 50 percent of all typosquatting domains can be traced back to just four typosquatting page hosters with certain TLDs much more prone to typosquatting than others.

    In the study the researchers also took a look at the 500 most popular websites. Here they found 477 of the domains for these sites had at least one malicious typosquatting domain. Further, only 156 of the authoritative domains in the list had defensive domain registrations, meaning 344 of the domains (representing 68.8% of the 500 most popular websites) had no defensive registrations whatsoever.

    Of the top three of the top 500 with the most defensive registrations, huffingtonpost.com had the most with 57 defensive domains, americanexpress.com had 42 domains and bloomberg.com had 39 domains. The top three of authoritative domains with the most malicious typosquatting domains were adultfriendfinder.com with 132 typosquatting domains, constantcontact.com with 103 typosquatting domains and odnoklassniki.ru with 97. Alarmingly the researchers found that of three banks in their top 500 list (bankofamerica.com, hdfcbank.com and icicibank.com), only bankofamerica.com had defensive registrations.

    The researchers also found, contrary to earlier research, that the longer the domain the greater likelihood of typosquatting. With a longer domain name, the number of possible typosquatting domains following the character substitution model rises very quickly. This is a change that has come about in the last six years.

    To download the results of the study in full, go to: https://lirias.kuleuven.be/bitstream/123456789/471369/3/typos-final.pdf

    Author: David Goldstein
  • 2015-02-16 - New gTLDs - Sunrise starts

    The Sunrise period of these new gTLDs will start this week:

    February 16, 2015 - April 17, 2015:
    .LAT

    February 18, 2015 - April 20, 2015:
    .FIT

    The following Sunrise phases will end soon:

    until February 14, 2015:
    .NRW

    until February 15, 2015:
    .KRED

    Author: Dorothea Klein
  • 2015-02-10 - New gTLDs: Already available

    The introduction process of new gTLDs is progressing. For a selection of new TLDs that are already available, please see the article below. For more information about already available new gTLDs, please see here:

    .بازار (.xn--mgbab2bd)
    Arabic for bazaar.

    .موقع (.xn--4gbrim)
    Arabic for website.

    .AUCTION
    For sellers, buyers, auction houses and sites.

    .BZH
    For Brittany and the Breton culture.

    .CLICK
    For all Internet users.

    .DEGREE
    For promoting online colleges and universities.

    .DENTIST
    For dental practices.

    .DIET
    For information about diet and healthy nutrition.

    .GENT
    Ghent is a city in Flanders (Belgium).

    .GIVES
    For good causes of any kind such as fundraisers.

    .HELP
    To get answers to all questions.

    .HOSTING
    For hosting services, software developers and web designers.

    .LTDA
    For companies with limited liability in Latin America.

    .MELBOURNE
    For the second most populous city in Australia.

    .MOSCOW / .МОСКВА
    TLDs for the Russian capital.

    .PARIS
    For the city of romance.

    .PHYSIO
    The internet namespace for physical therapy.

    .PROPERTY
    For realtors and appraisers.

    .QUEBEC
    Geo TLD for the province in Canada.

    .REHAB
    For physical therapist and drug rehabilitation centers.

    .SOFTWARE
    For engineers, companies, bloggers and the open-source community.

    .TOP
    For enterprises and qualified individuals with high degree of reputation and recognition.

    .WORLD
    For global product offers and services.

    Author: Julia Zang
  • 2015-02-06 - New gTLDs - Sunrise starts

    The Sunrise period of this new gTLD starts next week: 

    February 9, 2015 - March 11, 2015:
    .OSAKA

    The following Sunrise phases will end soon:

    until February 12, 2015:
    .VOTE, and .VOTO

    Author: Dorothea Klein
  • 2015-02-02 - New gTLDs - Sunrise starts

    The Sunrise period of these new gTLDs starts this week:

    February 4, 2015 - April 6, 2015:
    .GARDEN and .FASHION

    February 5, 2015 - March 7, 2015:
    .POKER

    The following Sunrise phases will end soon:

    until February 3, 2015:
    .SYDNEY

    until February 4, 2015:
    .LGBT

    until February 6, 2015:
    .CRICKET, .GREEN, .PARTY, and .SCIENCE

    Author: Julia Zang
  • 2015-02-02 - Are New gTLDs Hurting Registrations From Older TLDs?

    The launch of new gTLDs has caught the domain name world, and even the world outside it, in a bit of a frenzy with plenty of new options for registrants. Especially for brand owners not knowing whether to “protect” their brands across the hundreds of new gTLDs available.

    To date there have been 4.1 million domain names registered across, by my count, 304 new gTLDs that have entered General Availability in under 12 months. Overall, total registrations for all new gTLDs is approaching 4.25 million. It’s quite an achievement. But something that has been little noticed is a corresponding decline in registrations for some of the pre-existing TLDs – mostly gTLDs but also the .us ccTLD.

    The biggest of the gTLDs to have suffered a decline is .net. The number of .net domains under management (DUM), or registered, peaked at around 15.2 million at the end of 2013 and early 2014 according to Verisign’s statistics. But since then the gTLD has shed around 300,000 domains coinciding with the introduction of new gTLDs.

    A number of other gTLDs have suffered similar declines. When perusing statistics on RegistrarStats.com there are several examples, such as .biz, which peaked at around 3.2 million in early 2014 has seen its registration numbers decline to around 2.3 million. Likewise the .mobi gTLD. It peaked in January 2014 at around 1.2 million and today its numbers have plummeted to 806,000.

    Others, such as .info, saw registrations peak around December 2012 preceding the launch of the new gTLDs, but decline to 5.4 million today. The .asia gTLD peaked a bit later, around mid-2013 at around 500,000 and then its numbers too plummeted till mid-2014 and then stabilised and today has 278,000 registrations.

    The .tel gTLD has a chequered history when it comes to total registrations. It peaked around late 2011 or early 2012 with 340,000 registrations but has since declined before plummeting upon the launch of the first of new gTLDs and today has 132,000 registrations.

    There has been at least one ccTLD to have seen a decline. The .us ccTLD has seen its registration numbers peaked at around 1.8 million in early 2014 and today there are around 1.75 million.

    Not all though have seen numbers decline. The largest TLD of them all, .com, with 115.8 million registrations has seen its increases soften, likewise .org whose registrations are still increasing, just.

    While the evidence is only observational, it does throw up some interesting questions about the impact of new gTLDs.

    Author: David Goldstein
  • 2015-01-29 - .COM.SE: Now available!

    The new domain extension .COM.SE of CentralNic is now available for general registration. The domain extension has no restrictions and can be registered by anyone. .COM.SE combines the world's most popular .COM TLD with the Swedish .SE.

    Author: Dorothea Klein
  • 2015-01-26 - Google Won’t Preference New gTLDs, But They Are Performing Well In Searches

    Even though Google has stated new gTLDs won’t be getting any preferences in search results, a few studies show these same new gTLDs have been performing well in searches and are useful in improving Search Engine Optimisation (SEO).

    In early December Google’s John Mueller reiterated comments by his former colleague Matt Cutts when he said “there still is no inherent ranking advantage to using the new TLDs.”

    “They can perform well in search, just like any other TLD can perform well in search. They give you an opportunity to pick a name that better matches your web-presence. If you see posts claiming that early data suggests they're doing well, keep in mind that's this is not due to any artificial advantage in search: you can make a fantastic website that performs well in search on any TLD.”

    A report by Total Websites that looked at 20 domains found ‘it’s clear to see that new gTLD domains DO boost SEO rankings and Exact Match Domains (EMD), even in the new gTLDs, are still favoured in the search engines. Total Websites also found “many branded companies have already started opting to use gTLD domain names for SEO advantages.”

    Another point of view came from Globerunner’s SEO Expert Bill Hartzer in a Reddit discussion who noted “based on the New gTLD vs. Dot Com research that I did, Google tends to prefer the new gTLDs versus the .com, at least in Google AdWords. In fact, they gave the new gTLDs we tested more impressions for less money. And new gTLDs convert just as well as a traditional .com domain.”

    “If you are able to acquire and use a keyword-rich gTLD for your website, there's a good chance that it will rank if you do everything right (get enough links, build good content, etc. etc.).”

    And in third report that looked at the .berlin gTLD, the German-language SearchMetrics SEO blog found .berlin performed better overall than .com or .de in equivalent searches.

    So new gTLDs are definitely useful and are performing well in searches with relevant keywords, but search engines won’t be giving them any preferences. And as Mueller noted, “you can make a fantastic website that performs well in search on any TLD.”

    Author: David Goldstein
  • 2015-01-26 - .IT: Support of all 24 official languages of the EU as of now

    The registry of the Italian ccTLD .IT implemented the extension of IDNs for .IT domain names.

    So far, the .IT registry has only supported 21 special characters of the Italian, French and German language (à, â, ä, è, é, ê, ë, ì,î, ï, ò, ô, ö, ù, û, ü, æ, œ, ç, ÿ, β). Now all 24 official languages of the European Union are allowed within .IT domain name registrations. All characters belonging to the charset Latin-1 Supplement, Latin Extended-A, Latin Extended-B, Greek, Cyrillic, and Greek Extended are permitted.

    Author: Julia Zang
  • 2015-01-23 - New gTLDs - Sunrise starts

    The Sunrise period of these new gTLDs starts next week: 

    January 26, 2014 - March 27, 2015:
    .FLOWERS

    January 28, 2014 - March 30, 2015:
    .WEDDING

    The following Sunrise phases will end soon:

    until January 31, 2015:
    .ENERGY and .DELIVERY

    Author: Dorothea Klein
  • 2015-01-23 - .ID: Special domain names with less than five characters available

    The operator of the country-code top level domain .ID for Indonesia still allows the registration of special domain names with less than five characters until February 11, 2015.

    For further information, please contact the BrandShelter Team.

    Author: Julia Zang
  • 2015-01-22 - Some New gTLD Programme Successes and Failures As Registrations Pass 4 Million

    The new gTLD programme is approaching the 12 month mark since when the first gTLD was launched and already there are over four million registrations  across the 512 gTLDs that have been delegated according to nTLDstats.com.

    The biggest of the gTLDs by registrations, or domains under management, is .xyz with over 774,000. But it has been controversial given one registrar accounting for almost half its registrations has been giving away the equivalent .xyz domain to its .com registrants. It will be interesting to see how many of these renew.

    Another to recently launch and catapult into second place on nTLDstats.com’s chart is the .网址 (Chinese for website) gTLD that has now reached 354,418 registrations. However, 354,414 of these domains to date are registered through one registrar and the remaining four to the registry operator. So the public hasn’t been registering these domains.

    But one success is .club with the third highest number of registrations, 170,600. Like Donuts, who could also be considered a success with 1.210 million registrations across their 158 gTLDs up and running to date, they claim that none of their domains have been given away. Which puts them in a great place for when domains come up for renewal.

    Other likely successes include many of the city gTLDs, including the top three – .berlin in fourth with 156,100, .nyc (New York City) with 68,000 in eighth and .london in eleventh with 55,100. Even though .berlin appears to have given away or sold cheaply around 90,000 domains, they like other city gTLDs should expect high renewal numbers from the domains that have been paid for.

    With the city and regional gTLDs it’s not just registration numbers, they are also often being used to promote an identity and branding.

    But it’s not all big registration numbers. Some gTLDs charge a higher premium than others and one such gTLD is .luxury. It may only have 1,306 domains under management (DUMs), but they have higher registration fees and are aimed at (naturally) luxury brands. But .rich on the other hand with only 65 registrations would seem to have some work to do. Likewise the .wed gTLD, aimed at short term use for those getting married, seems to be struggling with 143 registrations.

    Overall it seems that city and regional gTLDs are being very successful as are those with a good idea and good marketing behind them such as .club and a number of Donuts gTLDs such as .guru, .photography and .email. But for many, the big test is when their domains come up for renewal, the first of which start happening in the next couple of months. Stay tuned.

    Author: David Goldstein
  • 2015-01-19 - .FR: Release of 1- and 2-character domains

    The Afnic registry will enable the registration of domains consisting of only one or two character(s) under the .FR TLD. The other TLDs within the French namespace currently managed by Afnic (.RE, .PM, .TF, .YT, and .WF) are not affected by the opening.

    The opening will take place in several phases:

    Sunrise: until February 9, 2015. Rights holders can apply for the registration of their domain names with 1 & 2 characters. Evidence required. First-come, first-served.

    Landrush: from February 16, 2015 until March 16, 2015. Any interested party can apply for the registration of a domain name with 1 & 2 characters. Landrush is divided into 4 sub phases with decreasing prices.

    General Availability: as of March 17, 2015

    Author: Julia Zang
  • 2015-01-16 - New gTLDs - Sunrise starts

    The Sunrise period of these new gTLDs starts next week:

    January 16, 2014 - February 15, 2015:
    .KRED

    January 19, 2014 - March 20, 2015:
    .ALSACE

    January 20, 2014 - March 21, 2015:
    .TIRES

    The following Sunrise phase will end soon:

    until January 17, 2015:
    .BAND and .RIP

    Author: Dorothea Marx
  • 2015-01-12 - How New gTLDs Are Being Used

    Two recent analysis of how new gTLDs are being used have been conducted – one by DomainsBot and another by Verisign.

    During the Domain Forum conference in Bulgaria in December, a panel session was held describing the impact of new gTLDs. Incidentally, the conference used a new gTLD domain for their website -domainforum.global.

    The panel included Stephane Van Gelder who wrote about the presentation by fellow panellist Daniel Ruzzini Mejia from DomainsBot on his Milathan blog.

    The presentation, according to Van Gelder, was based on an analysis of 2,961,792 domains that were registered on 7 November, around 96 percent of all domains registered in new gTLDs at the time. Today nTLDstats.com note there are 4,069,944 domains registered across 436 new gTLDs.

    According to Van Gelder’s report, 228,208 domains redirected to parked pages and 1,105,943 pointed to temporary pages while 860,921 domains, or 29 percent, were unreachable. That is they did not resolve to any website.

    DomainsBot also looked at real use analysis. They found that only 38,298 domains were being used in this way. Van Gelder notes that “real use analysis came by looking at which domains used the same SLD (secondary level domain) with a different TLD.” There were also 140,562 domains that redirected to a completely different domain. An example of this was pacific.beer that at the time redirected to discoverpacifico.com.

    Van Gelder’s report then went on to note that “websites are not the only measure of actual domain use. When domains are used for email, they are also much more likely to endure and be renewed by owners who find them to actually be useful.”

    The analysis found that 1,502,773 domains were without an MX record, the part of a domain name’s technical configuration which allows it to be used for email (MX stands for Mail Exchanger). Just as interesting is the fact that 163.653 did not point to actual website content, but were configured with an MX record.”

    The other analysis was conducted by Andy Simpson from Verisign, who describes himself as “someone who has long studied trends in the domain name industry”. Simpson wondered whether “new gTLDs create “new” naming trends or redundant domains across many TLDs?”

    The short answer Simpson says is illustrated by the percentage of the second-level domains (SLDs) that were available in .COM as of 15 December 2014 as per the two pie graphs.

    Simpson’s results show “a significant majority (~84%) of the SLD strings being registered in the new gTLDs are also registered in .COM. However, there are 521,834 new gTLD domain names (493,563 unique SLD strings, or 16% of all new gTLD SLDs) that are registered in new gTLDs but not in .COM.”

    Simpson then looked at “whether the combination of the SLD and new gTLD string is available as a SLD in .COM –e.g. Andy.NewgTLD as AndyNewgTLD.COM. As can be seen in the second pie chart, when the new gTLD is combined with the SLD, nearly 75 percent of the names registered in new gTLDs are available in .COM.”

    Author: David Goldstein
  • 2015-01-08 - New gTLDs - Sunrise starts

    The Sunrise period of these new gTLDs starts next week:

    January 13, 2015 - February 12, 2015:
    .VOTE, .VOTO    

    January 15, 2015 - March 16, 2015:
    .PHARMACY    

    The following Sunrise phases will end soon:

    until January 10, 2015:
    .FORSALE

    until January 16, 2015:
    .SPACE

    until January 17, 2015:
    .BAND, .RIP

    Author: Julia Zang
  • 2015-01-02 - New gTLDs - Sunrise starts

    The Sunrise period of this new gTLD starts next week:

    January 5, 2015 - February 4, 2015:

    .LGBT

     

    The following Sunrise phases will end soon:

    until January 3, 2015:

    .DEGREE, .GIVES, and .WORLD

    until January 4, 2015:

    .RIO

    until January 5, 2015:

    .CASA, .WORK, and .YOGA

    until January 9, 2015:

    .HOW

    Author: Jamile Tarabay