Wednesday, February 25, 2015 Ranked on Page 1 of Google in Less Than 48 Hours

Being a member of a twelve-member wine club that meets once a month for the last 22+ years provided motivation to finally create website to document what our club does.  What do we do you may ask...we taste red wine.  In fact, between all of our regular tastings and special tastings, we've tasted thousands of red wines over the years from all over the world and we have kept detailed records of the tasting we've done over that time, including a member preference poll for each tasting we have ever had.  Now that we are well into the digital age, we decided it was time to create a website for our wine club, so that we could share with the world what we've been up to and provide some insight on what our collective pallets like the most.

When considering a domain name for our wine club, it only seemed natural to register a dot club domain name,, since that is our name and a club is what we are!    Oh, and the dot com was already taken.  That IS the beauty of a new gtld!  It is a is available... and it is what it is, not to sound like Frank Zappa or Bill Belichick.  

New gTLDs just may have a leg up in search engine marketing.  Recently in Las Vegas at Namescon 2015, Bill Hartzer, Senior SEO Strategist at Globe Runner SEO, participated in a speaking panel about search engine optimization and an experiment he conducted using exact match domains in dot com and a new gTLD.  In the example he provided, he talked about two domain names that he developed with identical content, and  What Bill shared was that getting traffic through Google Adwords cost a bit less for the new gTLD than it did for the dot com.  Bill also shared the fact that over time, the conversion rates (for downloading a PDF about diamond sizing) were also better for the new gTLD than they were for the dot com.  

Okay, while this is not earth shattering, it is, perhaps, an indication that search engines may prefer new gTLDs over time, as they are more significantly niche focused, they have fresh content since they are new and they are relevant to the search being conducted, although nobody's is admitting that over there.   

I have also heard several stories about new gTLD websites ranking well in organic search.  One specific story was about and how only after two weeks, they were ranked in the first position for a Google search of Credit Club.  Granted, there was a lot of publicity, news stories and links that preceeded the ranking, due to being hand registered for regular fee.  However, regarding my newly launched, it is interesting to note that after only 48 hours (with no publicity, news stories or links), the website is ranking on page 1 of Google for a search of Vino Rouge (out of over 3.5 million results) and in the first position for Vino Rouge Club.  No magic SEO here, just fresh and interesting content, as well as a new gTLD domain name.  Time will tell if it was just luck, but my hunch is that this year will start to see more and more new gTLD websites being successful because of favorable rankings and cheaper advertising options.  I know I'm looking forward to trying it again soon with a different new gTLD domain name.  If the results are similar, I'll be sure to come back here and let you all know about it!  Thanks for reading and remember, don't drink wine and register domain names at the same time!


.SCIENCE domains are open to all
On the 24 of February 2015, new .SCIENCE domain names were opened to the public and anyone could register a domain name ending in .SCIENCE at a very competitive price, sometimes for nothing.

I was there and hope members of the French science community were there too because it was the proper moment to register generic domain names.

Of course, registration figures are high and many registered these domain names: 35,000 domain names were registered after 16 hours.

Of course, one could submit its trademark data into the Trademark Clearinghouse to participate in the ".SCIENCE Sunrise Period" - this period is dedicated to companies with a prior right to offer them to register a domain name prior to the "Open to All Period" - but it required to know about its existence.
"Science" is not an English word, it is French too.
If I believe many English signs were registered, not so many were registered in French so I did that job for French Science with a list of 70 domain names.

Free for the French scientific community
French Scientific institutions can ask for a .SCIENCE domain name from the list below. I will be happy to transfer the domain name to any scientific identified institution and for Free.

Note that these domain names were registered yesterday and for this reason they cannot be transferred right away but on request and after that I have identified the scientific institution, I will be happy to:
  1. unlock the domain name and;
  2. give the auth code.
The institution will have to pay to transfer the domain name to its Accredited Registrar and I will be happy to explain for the procedure.

The list of domain names:

I was not able to register .SCIENCE domain names with accents.

Tuesday, February 3, 2015

The Independent Review on .WINE & .VIN new gTLDs

Protection of wine GIs
According to a source, and possibly ICANN, there will (should?) soon be more information on .WINE and .VIN new gTLDs. After more than two years waiting, let's hope 2015 is the year for domain names ending in .WINE, and wine Geographical Indications to have their protection mechanism in the domain name registration process.

The Independent Review Process
Publication of applications for .WINE and .VIN new generic Top-Level Domains were announced mid 2012 and the Independent Review Processes for both applications were initiated in July the 4, 2014 by the European Commission (EU member states). There are a lot more stories to read about these on CircleId and dates can be found here.

Recent emails sent to ICANN on that question:
  1. To Amy Stathos:
    1. Question: ...could you point me to a place on the ICANN website (a link will do) where is clarified the exact role of Hogan & Lovells protecting wine Geographical Indications in .WINE & .VIN ?
    2. Answer: none received.
  2. To new gTLD support:
    1. Question: ...when will ICANN do any update on .WINE and .VIN new gTLDs? If there are any, what are they or where can I read more about the situation?"
    2. Answer: ...On 8 July 2014, the Wine Industry Organization invoked a Cooperative Engagement Process regarding the applications for .WINE and .VIN ( Future updates regarding this CEP may be viewed at Per ICANN processes, the application status has been changed to “On-Hold” pending the resolution of this ICANN Accountability Mechanism.
  3. To Hogan Lovells:
    1. Question: "Le nom de "Hogan Lovells" a été mentionné, ce jour, aux RINDD de Safebrands dans le cadre de la gestion du litige .WINE / .VIN (protection, des IGs notamment). Cette information est-elle publique, si oui, où?"
      Translation: the name of Hogan Lovells was mentioned during the French RINDD (a French conference about domain names) on the subject of protecting wine Geographical Indications in .WINE & .VIN new gTLDs. Is this information public and if it is, where can I find it?
    2. Answer: none received.
There seems to be some kind of nebula around .WINE and .VIN new gTLDs and actually, very few people will answer questions about these applications.

If the participation of Hogan Lovells in Famous Four Media's project (Famous Four Media was one of 3 applicants for .WINE new gTLDs before Donuts won the auction) is no secret story, I believe one of the reasons must be the money involved in trying to find solutions added to the incapacity of "someone" (applicant or ICANN) to act.

But...what takes so long for ICANN to finally decide? Whatever decision is taken, let's see if they do better than this ;-)

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