Monday, October 28, 2019

New gTLDs : Looking For a Position

My dear new gTLD Network,

With the next round of the ICANN new gTLD program coming, I look for a position at an existing Registry, a Backend Registry, a future new gTLD applicant, a Multiple Registry, a Registrar (Corporate or Retail), a Law Firm or a Web/Communication Agency.

What I will do for you:
  • I will create your .BRAND (also called "dotBrand") new gTLD project, considering potential objections;
  • I will find the perfect price and deal for your mandatory Backend Registry provider;
  • I will submit your new gTLD application to the ICANN until it is delegated;
  • For a project dedicated to selling domain names through the network of accredited Registrars; I will operate and promote your TLD with the appropriate team;
  • For new gTLD innovation on a $50 Million ROI project, I will need an hour of your time to explain how your application can change how consumers search on Internet.
  • I will also be able to operate and monitor large domain name portfolios on both the Registrar or the Registrant's side (as a Registrar's client).
I have the experience from the first round of the ICANN new gTLD program and also worked for major Registrars (retail and Corporate) and Registries. I am based in Paris, France.

My details are available here.

Monday, October 14, 2019

The .CONTACT new gTLD is around but...

I heard background noise about the .CONTACT new gTLD and it appears that there could be innovation coming with this string: not just domain names to buy and renew. If I am confident that Donuts - the new owner of the .CONTACT new gTLD - has the capacity to create innovation, I sincerely hope that it is going to bring something definitely new to the new gTLD world and not a copy of the .TEL Top-Level Domain.

Remember .TEL ?
The .CONTACT new gTLD reminds me of the .TEL : do you remember the .TEL with this platform dedicated to offering your communication details? It offered links to you phone, your email, the possibility to add sub-domains to differentiate your professional identity from your personal one, you could even add your Adsense in the end to try to generate an income from it.

I liked it quite a lot in the beginning and registered as a great domain name that I would use on my personal business card to point to "what I do", and the option to contact me in several ways (and show off my websites too). The problem is that the platform was a nightmare and required many clicks to do something. It required a different password from the domain name registration (2 passwords then). The platform was then abandoned several years after. Unless I am wrong, I think that it can till be used.

Funny, I just checked and noticed that someone uses it for porn in some strange language :-)

Please "renew"
"Meet with adoption" is a sentence that I quite like when it comes to talking about the launching of a new gTLD: it is also the hardest challenge for a registry. Having registrants to renew a domain name does not necessarily mean that a new gTLD has met with adoption and I hate to write it but it is precisely what happened to .TEL and myself:
  1. I found the project quite innovative: it was the only one to offer something different;
  2. .TEL was cool : it meant "Telephone" and was a great string to tel users your phone number: "hey, this is where you can find my phone number...and much more";
  3. The .TEL new gTLD was the only one to launch, there was not even competition around: no other strings were launching at the same time!
  4. I really liked the idea of offering access to a platform that made sense to me: the opportunity to offer all possibilities to contact me in a single place: it required no HTML development, no coding whatsoever...and no hosting!
I kept and used the name several years BUT at some point...I dropped it because it was just another domain name to renew for a use that I did not really have since I already had other websites for my activities. The .TEL Top-Level Domain now has 75,000 domains on the market: it had...many more in the past.

This is the ultra high challenge that the .CONTACT new gTLD is facing: users not to drop their domain name at some point. It the innovation to come with this new string is not completely different from what we've seen in the past...let's hope that Premiums will do the rest.

Come on Donuts, show us what you've got ;-)

Monday, September 30, 2019

New gTLD Reports are up-to-date!

October is here an our new gTLD Reports were just updated for this month. On Twitter, I will point to interesting new gTLD stats from the month:
  1. New gTLDs related to POLITICS (.democrat - etc...);
  2. New gTLDs related to LUXURY (.luxe - etc...);
  3. New gTLDs related to the MUSIC community (.band - etc...);
  4. New gTLDs related to CATERING and CULINARY (.kitchen - etc...);
  5. New gTLDs related to PHOTOGRAPHY (.gallery - etc...);
  6. New gTLDs related to CITIES : these are city names only (.berlin - etc...);
  7. New gTLDs related to COMPANIES : new domain name extensions that we believe a company should keep an eye on;
  8. New gTLDs related to the LAW and LEGAL matters (.lawyer - etc...);
  9. New gTLDs related to FINANCE (.financial - etc...);
  10. New gTLDs related to a COLOR (.black - etc...);
  11. New gTLDs related to SPORTS (.football - etc...);
  12. New gTLDs related to ALCOHOL (.vin - etc...);
  13. New gTLDs related to REAL ESTATE (.maison - etc...);
  14. New gTLDs related to RELIGION (.faith - etc...);
  15. New gTLDs related to CARS (.tires - etc...);
  16. New gTLDs related to HEALTH (.surgery - etc...);
  17. New gTLDs related to ADULTS (.sex - etc...);
  18. FRENCH new gTLD applications from French applicants;
  19. Multiple Registries : group of Registries operating five (5) and more TLDs;
  20. Singular VS Plural versions of a new gTLD : these are domain name extensions which exist in their singular and plural version (ie: .gift and .gifts).

Tuesday, September 24, 2019

The .SPA new gTLD is around

The ICANN contract Registry Agreement for the .SPA new gTLD was just signed and here is what the application says:

.SPA is dedicated to the spa and wellness community.

According to a recent PricewaterhouseCoopers survey focused on the spa industry, 95% have dedicated business websites, 81% advertise and connect to consumers through social media, and over 50% are listed in online directories and monitor reviews. What this means is that the community is eager to reach out to and communicate with its customers online. Developing a strong online presence is therefore becoming increasingly important for operators in the spa community.

Today, none of the TLDs offer the type of health conscious, relaxation and wellness branding that is extremely important for successful spas. Domain names are already more than just a command line used for navigation and resource location on the Internet. Having a TLD that expresses the spirit and branding for spas would be very meaningful to the community. The .SPA TLD would be the most appropriate TLD for this purpose.

Another emerging trend as identified in SpaFinder’s 2012 report for top 10 spa trends is online wellness games. While online games are not traditionally associated with personal wellness and health, SpaFinder reports that medical experts agree that online wellness games “could actually be the key to changing the world’s health, given the unique power that its core mechanisms (especially social dynamics) have on sustaining wellness goals.”

Building on these developing trends, the vision of the Registry is that through the development of the .SPA TLD, it is possible to promote the advancement of the spirit and mind-body vitality philosophies of the spa community, to advocate the wholesome health and wellness consciousness of people around the world.

The mission and purposes of the .SPA TLD are:
  1. To operate the .SPA TLD as a world-class domain registry dedicated to promoting the spa and wellness community;
  2. To support the spa and wellness community, it’s industry operators, professionals and practitioners, in their efforts to develop and extend their presence online;
  3. To foster collaboration within the community, which in turn supports the advocacy of the sustainable holistic mind, body and spiritual wellness of the society;
  4. To encourage excellence and professionalism in the spa and wellness community by leveraging the .spa TLD to further the interaction between the industry and consumers; and,
  5. To deliver a secure and stable TLD registry with a high sense of integrity with policies that protect against abusive registrations and the infringement of rights of others.
In addition, to its mission and vision, as a new gTLD, the Registry believes in its responsibility as a responsible industry participant to advance competition, enhance consumer trust and promote consumer choice with the development of the TLD:
  1. Advance Constructive Competition
    The .spa TLD is focused on developing a namespace that can be complementary to the spa community. The TLD is not intended to be a generic alternative to existing gTLDs. The .SPA TLD advances constructive competition among TLDs by offering a niche TLD with the appropriate stylistic identity over other TLDs, for the spa community.
    The adoption of the .SPA TLD also promotes constructive competition among spas which could exemplify their awareness in the development of technologies supporting wellness. Furthermore, the Registry believes that the utilization of a .SPA domain can provide spas with a better online brand that matches with the style and touch as a relaxed and comfortable environment that matches their offline identity.
  2. Enhance Consumer Trust
    Based on expert studies, Internet users have more trust for domain names that exactly matches what they are looking for. Providing a namespace for spas would allow spa operators to develop a more trusting online brand which they can advertise to their customers with. The value of the TLD name in itself is therefore a core part of the value and of building consumer trust.
    Furthermore, appropriate Abuse Prevention & Mitigation (APM) as well as Rights Protection Mechanisms (RPM) is also important to ensuring a trusted domain space. Further details of APM and RPM above and beyond the basic ICANN requirements is discussed in responses to Q28 & 29.
  3. Promote Consumer Choice
    According to a research by PricewaterhouseCoopers, there are a total of around 40,000 spas around the world (not including the hundreds and thousands of massage establishments and foot spas in Mainland China). According to the same research, in 2010, spas received 150 million client visits in the US, an increase from 143 million the year before. The revenue from the spa industry has reached US$12.8 billion in 2010 in the US, up from US$12.3 in 2009. The spas in the Asia Pacific region generate around US$2 billion a year and this figure is expected to increase significantly in the coming years.
The .SPA TLD believes in creating value for the spa community and consumers in general which is not necessarily measured by the volume of domain names registered under the .SPA TLD but the branding value it offers to the spa community. A consumer of spa products and services is looking for an environment that nurtures their mind and body in relaxed environment. None of the existing TLDs evoke that sense of peaceful calm for consumers.

The .SPA TLD has the possibility to address those needs and provide consumers with a choice to enter a domain that harmonizes with the emotional wellbeing they are seeking in a spa.

To learn more about the .SPA Top-Level Domain, see here.

Thursday, September 12, 2019

Many new gTLDs to request their ".brand"

The world is full of .BRANDs :-)

Four new gTLD applications from ALIBABA just requested their Specification 13 to become .BRANDs : the lucky applicants TO QUALIFY FOR SPECIFICATION 13 TO THE REGISTRY AGREEMENT are:
  2. .ALIPAY
  3. .TAOBAO
  4. .TMALL
At the moment I am writing these lignes, it seems that .AMAZON and many other Trademarks are doing the same!

The Request from ALIBABA:
This is what the request for .ALIPAY says (the other requests are the same):

Alibaba Group Holding Limited (“Registry Operator”), in connection with the execution of the Registry Agreement for the .ALIPAY TLD (the “Registry Agreement”), hereby applies for .ALIPAY TLD to be qualified by ICANN as a .Brand TLD.

Registry Operator confirms and represents to ICANN that the TLD meets each of the criteria for the TLD to be qualified as a .Brand TLD, as described in the .Brand TLD Application Process and Specification 13 attached thereto, and that all supplemental material accompanying this application is accurate and not misleading in any respect. Registry Operator also represents that the trademark registration attached hereto as Exhibit A, the registration policies attached hereto as Exhibit B, and the SMD file ID number attached hereto as Exhibit C are complete and accurate copies of the official trademark registration, Registry Operator’s registration policies for the TLD, and the SMD file ID for the TLD for which this application is submitted respectively.

Registry Operator agrees that if Registry Operator makes any changes to its registration policies for the TLD (whether before or after this application has been approved) that may disqualify the TLD as a .Brand TLD, it will promptly provide ICANN with a complete and accurate copy of the revised registration policies. In addition, if Registry Operator fails to maintain the trademark registration underlying its .Brand TLD application, it shall promptly notify ICANN of such failure. Registry Operator also agrees to maintain the criteria required to qualify as a .Brand TLD and to immediately notify ICANN of any changes in circumstances that could alter the statements made, and supporting materials provide with, this application.

Because this application is submitted to ICANN after the delegation of the TLD to names ervers designated by the Registry Operator into the root- zone, Registry Operator represents to ICANN that all domain names that are registered in the TLD are registered to and maintained in compliance with the requirements of the .Brand TLD definition.

Registry Operator acknowledges and agrees that this letter is binding on Registry Operator and, if any of the foregoing representations and agreements becomes untrue or not complied with, it shall be deemed a breach of the Registry Agreement by Registry Operator, and ICANN may assert its rights under the Registry Agreement, including by determining that the TLD no longer qualifies as a .Brand TLD pursuant to the terms of Specification 13.

There are exhibits of trademark registrations and an 18 pages request. To learn more from this and read the full list of applicants, click here.

Monday, September 9, 2019

It's .NEW (Sunrise Period coming)

The .NEW (pronounced "dotnew") Sunrise Period was just announced by the Trademark Clearinghouse. This extension belongs to Google.

  • START: Tuesday, 15 October, 2019 - 16:00;
  • END: Tuesday, 14 January, 2020 - 16:00.
What the application says:
Charleston Road Registry is an American company, wholly owned by Google, which was established to provide registry services to the Internet public. Google is an American multinational public corporation and global technology leader focused on improving the ways its hundreds of millions of users connect with information. Since its formation, Google has been developing technology that can improve upon existing ways of doing business on the Internet. Google provides a variety of services and tools for Internet users and advertisers of all sizes, from simple search features and local ads to enterprise-scale business applications and global advertising solutions. These tools make it easier for people to make use of the world’s information and enable entrepreneurs and publishers around the world to grow their businesses.  
In line with Google’s general mission, Charleston Road Registry’s mission is to help make information universally accessible by extending the utility of the DNS while enhancing the performance, security and stability of the Internet for users worldwide. Charleston Road Registry aspires to create unique web spaces where users can learn about products, services and information in a targeted manner and in ways never before seen on the Internet. Its business objective is to manage Google’s gTLD portfolio and Google’s registry operator business. As discussed further in the responses to questions 23 and 31, Charleston Road Registry intends to outsource all critical registry functions to Google Registry Services.  
The proposed gTLD will provide the marketplace with direct association to the term, ʺnew.ʺ The mission of this gTLD, .new, is to provide a dedicated domain space in which registrants can enact second-level domains that position content as ʺnew.ʺ This mission will enhance consumer choice by providing new availability in the second-level domain space, creating new layers of organization on the Internet, and signaling the kind of content available in the domain. Charleston Road Registry believes that registrants will find value in associating with this gTLD, which could have a vast array of purposes from enterprises, small businesses, groups or individuals seeking to associate with the term ʺnew.ʺ Charleston Road Registry expects these uses may include but are not limited to applications such as media (tv, author and marketing campaigns (, 
The proposed gTLD will also provide Charleston Road Registry with the means to meet its business objectives.
Just for the note
There is a .NEWS (for News) that exists too and you will find it in the list of similar Top-Level Domains that I created.

Learn more here.

Saturday, September 7, 2019

Another 2 new gTLDs are terminated

The ICANN terminated another two 2 new gTLDs. The new domain name extensions concerned are:
  1. .MOBILY
  2. .xn--mgbb9fbpob or .موبايلي (the Arabic IDN for "mobily").
The 2 extensions are from GreenTech Consultancy W.L.L. and both are .BRAND domain name extensions but neither ".xn--mgbb9fbpob" nor ".mobily" were granted a specification 13 according to the Trademark Clearinghouse.

This is what the application said for .MOBILY
Mobily’s TLD is intended to benefit Internet users by enabling Etihad Etisalat (dba Mobily) and its affiliates (collectively “The Company”) to communicate more easily and effectively with all Internet users, and particularly with The Company’s many customers, employees and affiliates. The TLD will become a supporting branding, technology and services platform for The Company’s mission and its businesses.  
The Mobily Registry will provide an Internet space, under control of The Company, to allow the distribution and exchange of information among The Company and its stakeholders by means of, but not limited to, websites, social networks, email and other technologies that will reside within the Mobily domain name space. In addition, ancillary services may be provided in relation to registration of domains within the TLD, including but not limited to website hosting, SEO, marketing and consulting services. And of course, the TLD will be used to promote and deliver our telecommunications services. 
The Mobily IDN Registry will further provide a fully Arabic language alternative for Mobily. With its roots in the Middle East and vast and varied business operations throughout the region, and the ongoing expansion of the global IDN domain space, the IDN TLD will prove useful to The Company and its affiliates.
The Company intends initially to reserve all names within the TLD to itself, and to later register and use any of those domain names for promotional and navigational purposes relating to The Company’s online presence and⁄or provision of goods and services.
Eventually, The Company may allow third parties to license the use of names within the TLD. The Company intends to control content of websites and other uses of domain names within the TLD via contract with any third-party licensees, if any, and via monitoring and enforcement of those contractual provisions.
I had briefly spoken about the .MOBILY new gTLD with two other consultants...but it appears that no one had enough imagination to come out with a solution for .MOBILY.

New gTLD Reports are updated once a month: CLICK HERE !