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The launch of the new gTLDs

UPDATED Nov 6: We've been talking about it for months: November 5 (or the week after, if it's still quirky) November 29th marks the beginning of a new era in the world of domain names.

Note: there is an update to this now-outdated post here.

Within the next 24 months, nearly 1500 extensions will be added to the existing 300. As of today, it is now possible to convert your pre-reservations into pre-registrations.

The first TLDs, operated by Donuts (who will be managing over 200 of them when all is said and done) are open to all, without limitations or restrictions.

These "pioneer" extensions are the following:

Registration rates can be found on each TLD's description page, and range from $12.35 ($14.20 including VAT) for a .guru, for example, up to $52.65 ($60.55 with VAT) for a .voyage.

We know, we told you that the .voyage, .camera, .estate, .lighting, and .equipment would be available too, but the dates and the list of domains are changing. Don't worry! We will honor all the pre-orders that are submitted, as soon as we can.

The trademark brand protection phase (also known as the "Sunrise" period) will begin on November 5 November 29, if all goes as planned. It will last 60 days (until January 24, 2014) and will not be on a first-come, first-served basis. If several requests are placed for the same domains during this time, there will be an auction at the end of the phase.
The sunrise period will NOT be followed in early January by a "Landrush" phase, which is a bit special (more on this later).
The public opening for all should take place around January 15 January 29, 2014.

Protect your brand

To be able to participate in the brand protection phase, remember that you must register your trademark with the Trademark ClearingHouse (TMCH). If you have not already done so, note that Gandi's Corporate service is authorized to do so on your behalf. It will cost $250.00 for 1 year or $690.00 HT for 3 years.

Once you have registered a trademark, you will receive an SMD file which you will use to validate your desired registrations for each TLD's Sunrise period.

If you have one or more brands to protect, we urge you to contact our team as soon as possible.

Convert your pre-registrations

If you have completed a pre-registration and you want to proceed with the real registration, we will hold your place in the internal Gandi waiting list. This means that if you are the first to have pre-registered a domain name on a new extension and there are several other pre-registrations for the same domain name, when you convert it to a registration, Gandi will present your application to the Registry first when the corresponding TLD's opening phase begins.

Early Access Program

After the Sunrise phase there will be a Landrush period for all TLDs managed by the Donuts registry (visible on the Gandi TLD description pages). The landrush period is called an Early Access Program. It is a bit special, and will work on the principle of the Dutch auction: the price of a domain is initially offered at a high price, and the sum is gradually lowered until it is purchased. The first to agree to the price at a given moment will be the one who gets the domain. This process will not be automated. We will post the prices over the next few weeks and you will need to contact our customer service team if you want a domain that is offered during this period.

Update 2013-11-06: The Donuts registry has decided not to do a land rush period and auction after all. These domains will go straight to general availability. Ties will be broken by a lottery method.

More on the way...

Finally, note that the next round of TLDs will also be handled by Donuts. It should be as follows:

In theory, the Sunrise period for this list is expected to launch November 12 sometime soon.

FAQ: We noticed a few questions about the new gTLDs, and thought we would just add them and the answers here. Feel free to ask more below, of course…

Q: When I go to buy a domain, I see two prices, one for Sunrise, one for Golive. Which do I choose?
A: If you have a trademark entered into the TMCH, then you can order during the Sunrise. Otherwise, use the Golive option.

Q: If I buy a domain now at the Golive price and it goes to Dutch auction and I lose, will I get my money back?
A: Yes.

Q: If I already have a registered trademark, do I still need to enter it in tot the TMCH to get a domain based on it?
A: Yes. The registration of your trademark alone does not qualify you to participate in the Sunrise. You need to have the proof of use and the registration, and have it validated in the TMCH.