Unless you have spent the last year studiously avoiding Domain Name news, you probably know that there is something happening at ICANN this year. Yes, that's right, ICANN has authorized the creation of nearly 2,000 new top-level extensions over the next 3 years. That's a big number! Probably more than you will want to register. While this flood of new possibilities is exciting, and we do hope that it enables a lot of creative activity, we expect the new extensions to be seriously underutilized, for the most part.
The Internet Infrastructure Coalition (I2Coaliton.com) has been created by more than 40 leading companies in the hosting industry. The mission is to help protect the Internet from improperly formulated regulation, like the SOPA/PIPA and CISPA legislation in the US, and to drive the investment, innovation, and openness that allows the Internet to be an engine for continued growth.
Of course, Gandi is a founding member!
Gandi took a position opposing SOPA and PIPA, and more recently CISPA. Our joining together with other organizations that also opposed this flawed legislation gives Gandi more of a voice in shaping policy, and helps us to achieve our goal of keeping the Internet safe for the free flow of information.
Gandi cares about our customers rights, and we want to see all our customers have a safe, rich, and uncensored online experience. These goals are shared by the I2C, who has made part of it's mission the education of law and policy makers about issues of privacy, freedom of information, security, and innovation. We at Gandi look forward to contributing our perspective to this important, powerful industry group.
DNSSEC (Domain Name System Security Extensions) is a way to secure a previously insecure protocol: DNS. The most technically adept among Gandi’s customer community have been asking for DNSSEC support for a long time, and now, we are pleased to say, it is available!
The latter ordered them to forward two domain names to a page of their choice, specifically one that warns against online gaming and describes the legal actions taken by the authorities against the owners of those websites.
If I'm not mistaken, along with the MegaUpload affair, this is the second time that we have had to deal with this sort of thing.
After much discussion, ICANN finally met in Singapore this July and confirmed the launch of the new gTLD process that began in Paris three years ago. As a result of this meeting, in 2 to 3 years from now, we will see a major change in the internet, and an increase in the number of extensions to choose from.
TheRegister.co.uk ( http://www.theregister.co.uk/2010/04/05/googlesharing_cert_revoked/ ) last night published an article describing how Gandi.net had enforced its policies by removing a certificate for a domain name googlesharing.net that had infringed on our terms and conditions in a number of ways. According to the article the known ‘hacker’ who admitted to falsifying his whois information on the registration was surprised that the certificate was removed.
In order to register a .PT domain, you must have a Portuguese taxpayer ID, as well as a document that proves that the domain name corresponds to a trademark, family name etc. (for example: the TVA number of the company Martin would be needed to register martin.pt).
If you do not meet this criteria, you can nonetheless register a .COM.PT domain. These domains are open to everyone, with the condition that individuals must provide a national ID number or passport number, and companies must provide their intra-Community VAT number.
The registration .PT and .COM.PT domains are sold at €24 ($35, or £22) excl. VAT per year under A rates. Transfers of .PT or .COM.PT to Gandi are available at only €1 ($1, or £1) for all.
See the .PT information page.
These ccTLD, while being the official extensions for Armenia and Micronesia, are frequently used for online radio stations, and who among us has not listened to internet radio?
Here is another journey, where you can discover 6 new extensions that you can manage at your favorite domain name registrar. And since we went by sail last time, today's tour will be by plane.
Looks like our ICANN report has generated quite a bit of buzz. We've been covered in hundreds of online publications in 10+ different languages all over the world (summary will follow towards the end of the week).
But it seems we've hit a rich vein of SEO implications and generated a bit of buzz in that community. I've just come across this blog summarising the view of many of the SEO big boys. http://www.cornwallseo.com/search/2009/06/16/what-is-internet-liberalisation-and-why-should-you-care/
Interesting stuff and some good issues raised.
Jeff Behrendt says "The only clear winner of the proposed new TLDs is ICANN - at $185K per application, that’s a gravy train they are going to want to ride for many years."
That may be a little unfair. The fee is partly in place to make sure that ICANN can provide a good oversight to new extensions being created and protect trademark holders and general internet users from people setting up dodgy extensions or without the technical competency to run them. They've said this may come down (or up) as they get into the process. The fee should be high to ensure a higher quality of registry. This could be the beginning of the internet name space clear up, with higher standards leading to fewer squatted, speculative or advertising domains.
Michael Gray says - "In most cases opening the web up with more TLD’s is just going to create confusion for consumers". A point also made by Patrick Altoft about consumer confusion.
Well that seems to be what our consumers have said in our survey, so they agree. Though this liberalisation does open up the opportunity for specific TLDs and therefore potentially more simplicity and order. Michael's example of .movie is precisely along these lines, why have spiderman3themoive.com when you can have spiderman3.movie. The film industry could create this extension and protect its use solely for films. I think consumers could get used to that, and it will make more logical sense. More literal meaning to the name space. Roll on the sematic web. Tim Berners-Lee would be so proud
Hugo Guzman talks about the importance to big business - "The liberalization of domain extensions is already grabbing the attention of Fortune 500 companies".
This was supported by our research too. Still 2/3 were unaware this was happening, but those that did know were both excited and afraid of it, depending on which department you spoke to (e.g. excited = marketing, afraid = legal). Owning .brand could allow you to more effectively manage your brand as you create the association with customers that only sites on .brand are really yours. Though Steve Russell is right, this will cost a lot more than the $185k setup fee.
Anyway, food for thought, and thanks guys for your views.
Would you trust a 'for profit' company to represent your best interests? Perhaps. But when your interests diverge, will they represent you or themselves?
Following the overwhelming success of our first article on the domain name industry (1 comment ;-), we naturally thought you were begging for more! I know, I know registrars and registries can be a bit dull, but it is important. Believe me when something goes wrong with your domain name, understanding this can be quite important. So if we look at how and where issues can be dealt with, and who has influence in the industry it sheds a bit more light on the subject.
We all put a lot of effort into securing the domain names we purchase. It may be creative energy finding the perfect name for your blog in an increasingly crowded landscape; or waiting patiently for your company name to be released back into the wild by someone who's owned it for 5 years but never used it.
Regardless, your domains can be stolen or sniped from right under your nose. We thought we'd take a light hearted look at how to keep your domains safe from potential domain thieves:
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