Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Richard Li is coming with his own new gTLD

There will be no ".jeanguillon"...

Why have no stars applied in Round one of the ICANN new gTLD program? We would have expected a ".kanyewest" or a ".kardashian", a ".taylorswift" or the IDN ".beyoncé" but no star submitted an application to become the first, worldwide, to massively propagate his/her popularity offering fans the chance to create websites using their name.

And what about other uses such as a www.rap.kanyewest - www.kim.kardashian - www.music.taylorswift or www.singleladies.beyoncé or just some fan.rihanna, jackie.chan, james.bond (wrong example) or again dance.britney ? I already read the announcements on flyers and billboards!

...but there will be a ".richardli" new gTLD
One applicant "only" considered submitting an application for his name followed by his family name and I must admit that the person to have provided new gTLD consultancy services was good here because Richard Li is writing history.

Richard Li is no pop star; Richard Li is a Hong Kong Business Super Star. The Front Page of his websites says: "Now is the time to go out, rather than meandering and relying on existing old models... If there is a vision, you should just go out and do it". Aren't new generic Top-Level Domains an answer to that statement?

A vision
Richard Li did not consider applying for his name only. He and partner companies applied for several TLDs: IDNs and Latin ones:
  1. Since a company has to apply for a new gTLD, ".richardli" was submitted by a company named Pacific Century Asset Management (HK) Limited;
  2. ".pccw" was submitted by PCCW Enterprises Limited;
  3. ".hkt" was submittted by PCCW-HKT DataCom Services Limited;
  4. " .香港電訊" was submitted by PCCW-HKT DataCom Services Limited and then withdrawned;
  5. ".電訊盈科" was submitted by PCCW Enterprises Limited.
Some of Richard Li new gTLD applications were signed this week and should be live very soon. It is the case for the ".RICHARDLI" and ".PCCW". Let' s see how these domain names enter the history...of Internet.

Monday, May 11, 2015

Changing of use (listen to new gTLDs)

You read articles about new gTLDs, you see new gTLDs adds on Television and Banners on Internet, but do you listen to new gTLDs?

Available on Startup.club
Uses are changing
I do not read long articles entirely, unless when they say something new about new gTLDs but I noticed that the way I collect and read the info changes with time. If I would never have turned the radio on in the past unless when in my car, I recently found myself using a new website to listen about new gTLDs information.

What I like to hear about
I like subjects related to new gTLDs and infringements: how to deal with these, solutions using tools from the Trademark Clearinghouse, Registrars and lawyers' advice, etc. I also like news on new Registries and Back-end Registries. I am not so much interested in Domaining but I admit that there is a lot happening in this branch of the new gTLD industry. I also  find interesting reasons why an application is withdrawn, who is going to submit an application in round 2 of the ICANN new gTLD program, which TLD is is going to be, who's who, who's taken a client to who, what are the reasons why an applicant is changing his back-end Registry, who's won a new gTLD auction, who's the genius who had the idea to send his truck with "inta.sucks" banner at INTA 2015, will .WINE and .VIN new gTLDs ever see the day, which TLD is profitable and which will be, etc...

Why I also listen to DomainSherpa
I receive notices of interviews and actually, listening to the one while working is acceptable: it works fine in the background and I frankly admit that I stopped working several times thinking: "I don't believe he said that".
It is time consuming to stop working and watch a show on Internet but listening to it while working does not stop you from working...unless when you hear such thing like: "ןpuɐɥ ʇnoqɐ ǝʞɐɔ ɟo ǝɔǝıd sıɥʇ buıʇıɹʍ ɯɐ ı ʎɐʍ ou sı ǝɹǝɥʇ".

Yes...in an interview, you can't come back on your text and re-write it: what is said is said. There are very good interviews of majors of the new gTLD industry and it is pretty interesting to hear about new names, new service providers or old ones trying to grab a peace of the cake. If you want to be interviewed, try a click on top-left of the website.

If DomainSherpa.com is not about new gTLDs "only", it is a good source for info related to domain names in general. In the latest interview there are two subjects of interest to me:
  1. "Which new gTLDs the Sherpas WON’T be renewing in the upcoming year";
  2. "How today’s new gTLD launch of .Video compares to the established ccTLD .TV".
Listening to the video interviews is possible and works fine in your background but downloading the mp3 audio stream is also made possible. I also suggest to click on the "News" link in the top menu to either view news, or submit yours.

Thursday, May 7, 2015

Buying the TLD is Just the Start... (by Colin Campbell)

...Making it Successful Takes Lots More Money & Perseverance

People frequently ask me how we got the rights to a top-level domain name (TLD), and I’ve often responded that it just takes a lot of money and perseverance. Now I’m wondering which one is more important and certainly realizing that launching a new domain extension has been a lot more challenging than I had originally thought.

As one of the losing bidders for .tv in the 90’s, my partners and I recognized that it took more than just winning the name. We just didn’t realize nor have the necessary resources to win the name and promote it.

This time we did things very differently. When the idea first came to me to apply for an extension, I assumed we would likely win the name uncontested with about $500,000 investment (including the application, legal fees, and a real business plan). However, it was soon obvious that multiple companies also wanted the same domain, and failure to win the name uncontested left us in a bind…and in need of more money to win it. We raised $8.2 million to buy the name at auction and launch it globally. But after eight months of buying a lot of rocket fuel to get our name off the ground, we quickly realized we were still short on funding and had to raise an additional $3.6 million.

What We Learned…

.CLUB by many standards has been the best performing new domain extension on the market, wining almost every survey and award and having usage that far exceeds almost every other new domain extension. In less than a year after launch, there have been more than 225 000 names paid registrations so far and more than $800,000 in premium names sold, including Vegas.club, Coffee.club, Wine.club and many more. But our success came only after a lot of hard work and a lot of investment. We have run several advertising campaigns and partnered with registrars to get the word out. In addition, we continue to attend dozens of trade shows per year and have worked closely with celebrities and brands to get them to use the names for fan clubs, loyalty programs and more. While we’re excited and proud of our success, we still have a long way to go.

Several companies have recently paid well over $10 million for their domain extension. Gaining the rights to the name is only the beginning, and each of these companies must consider what is required to establish itself as a national and even global brand. While the environment today for marketing a new TLD is far more challenging with hundreds of new extensions competing for dollars and mindshare, the good news is that as other TLDs begin to spend the money required to spread global awareness, most of the TLDs that have meaning will also benefit. To garner similar recognition as .co, .tv, or .info, it requires millions of dollars in investment, a relevant name with clear meaning, and a focused team executing on innovative campaigns with relentless resolve. We believe we have those things in .CLUB, including a word that is recognized and used globally in every language and culture throughout the world.

While it’s easy to say it just takes money and perseverance to launch a new domain extension, we’ve learned it also takes a winning team, a well-developed strategy and execution, and the work of the industry as a whole to make it successful.

Colin Campbell.

Singer 50Cent to choose a .CLUB domain name for his Fan Club.