Tuesday, January 30, 2018

New gTLDs and Health in 2017

This is a sum-up of 2017 focusing on new domain name registration volumes related to Health related new domain name extension. I listed 30 of them:
  • 19 are generic domain name extensions. I included in these applications, the one are restricted and the one that say they are restricted :-)
  • 10 are Trademarks (specification 13 of the applicant guidebook);
  • The .MEDICAL new gTLD was withdrawn.

10 .BRAND new gTLDs
Some Trademarks started to register domain names in the end of the year: .LUNDBECK - .LUPIN - .HISAMITSU and .TEVA created between 9 to 30 personalized domain names. The rest of these applications mostly stick to one single domain name registration but .LILLY which had three in December.

Deep blue
One extension has been highly successful and never lost registrations from one month to the other: the .CARE Top-Level Domains gained 4,000 new registrations in one year to end with more than 17,000 registrations. Same for the .DOCTOR TLD which sticked to the blue during the year. It started from 2,118 registrations and ended to 3,751. The .HEALTH extension has been doing good as well as .HOSPITAL and the restricted .PHARMACY : all kept receiving registrations from January to December.

What about the red?
Health related volumes of domain names are increasing globally and it looks like registants are renewing them but within 3 extensions: .DIET - .SURGERY and .HIV. I believe it will take time for private surgeons to realize that there is an online identity created "just for them" but I think that .DIET should be adopted much faster.

The .RIP new gTLD
I have been asked several times why .RIP ("Rest In Peace" or "Requiescat In Pace") was added to this report and I still have no answer to that question. I wanted to keep an eye on this string because it is the only one that gives websites a perfect identity for a content dedicated to someone who passed away. I wonder when businesses related to the death take advantage of this (online cemeteries, French pompes funèbres...) because these are lucrative and the web is full of messages dedicated to people who passed away. The .RIP new gTLD can give them a strong identity...up to 10 years in packaged offers.

Check the full report here (the report is now available in French too).

Monday, January 29, 2018

Generic new gTLDs (to replace ".com")

From company names to trademarks and online boutiques to pornography, I like to call the ".com" domain name extension a generic one because it used for everything. If new gTLDs offer the advantage to differ from ".com" by bringing precision right in the domain name extension; some, by trying to compete with ".com", are offering another advantage: AVAILABILITY. Remaining generic new gTLDs, they also offer the possibility to remain global.
In simple words: you can buy a new domain name from the latest ICANN new gTLD program with an extension that has the exact same meaning as a".com".

9 generic TLDs
I listed nine generic domain name extensions which, I believe, have the same use as a ".com":
  1. The .GLOBAL new gTLD;
  2. .SITE
  4. .WORLD
  5. .ONLINE
  7. .CONTACT (not "really" launched yet)
  8. .HOME (not launched yet)
  9. .WEB (not launched yet)
Are these TLDs successful?
When comparing with ".com" domain name registration volumes, the .ONLINE new gTLD had 782,790 registrations in December 2017 when .COM had 128.548.420 so we have a 128 million registrations difference between .COM and its closest competitor (...)
Does it mean that generic TLDs are not a success? Certainly not since .ONLINE gained 215,000 new registrations in one year. This is noticeable.

In the blue
On these 9 domain name extensions, two remain to be launched, the .CONTACT new gTLD has sticked to one single registration during the entire year (my feeling is that the applicant...well...who cares if he is about to sell his TLD to Afilias) and one has lost a little less than 50,000 registrations.

The TLDs after gained registration from January to December: .ONLINE - .WEBSITE - .WORLD - .GLOBAL and .INTERNATIONAL. When .CONTACT launches, I am confident that it is a success too.

We don't need more
While I find this positive to be able to register a domain name using a generic extension, I also fear that it could become a risk. The .SITE new gTLD lost a lot of registrations between January and December 2017: could the existence of the similar .WEBSITE extension be a reason for this? Note that the registry's method to install its domains on the market could also be a reason why a TLD loses registrations: the fact that many registries have tried the same methods to give names away (or at very low prices) could start to show signs that the method was not such a good one.

Also, the presence of so many similar generic TLDs on the market could also push to registering domain names in niche extensions which have no close competitor and which offer precision. We clearly don't need more generic extensions.

Check the full report here (the report is now available in French too).

Friday, January 26, 2018

Could Verisign block the next new gTLD round?

I like to read that letter from the co-chairs of the GNSO’s policy development process on new gTLD subsequent procedures: it is positive and asking the right questions to ICANN. One paragraph caught my attention:
"We would also appreciate input on the total number of TLDs that could be delegated without negative impact to root server performance."
Honorable "new gTLD Boss" and ICANN CTO gave answers and I stopped on that section of a paragraph:

"There are also technical limits placed on capacity by the systems that handle root zone provisioning (operated by PTI as JANA Functions Operator and Verisign as Root Zone Maintainer)..."
Actually, I fell from my chair and broke two legs.

Verisign is the registry for ".com" domain name and has shown signs that new gTLDs were impacting its business: the more new domain name extension spread online, wider is the choice and - unless I am wrong - this reduces the choice to register a ".com" domain name.

I didn't know that the technical infrastructure of domain names relied on Verisign too but I believe that this could be used as a technical reason not to push for another round of new gTLDs.

Thursday, January 25, 2018

Religious new gTLDs: blue or red?

There are a certain number of domain name extensions related to religions: most are catholic and almost all of them have received more domain name registrations in December 2017 than what they had in January 2017, this is a good point.

20 new gTLDs
On the list of 20 religious new gTLDs:
  • The .FAITH has more than 50,000 registrations;
  • The .WEDDING and .CHURCH new gTLDs have more than 10,000 domain names registered;
  • The .BIBLE and .CHRISTMAS have more than 1,000 domains registered;
  • 3 of them are IDNs with one domain name registered;
  • 2 are .BRAND new gTLDs representing a religious organization: .CBN and .LDS
Only 8 TLDs "launched" with more than 5 domains registered on a total of 20 and 8 of them sticked to one single domain name registration during the entire year (12 months). My brilliant analysis is that these registries still have absolutely no idea of what to do with their costly domain name extension. This is something that I don't understand: can the only reason be that the Vatican fears that a third party would have submitted an application for the .MORMON new gTLD ? Come on...

Blue or red?
Only two of these extensions lost registrations from January to December: the .CHRISTMAS Top-Level Domain lost 940 domain name registrations and .WED ... seems now like an example of a failed TLD: it only had 108 domains registered in January and 37 in December (we already wrote about this).

The .FAITH Top-Level Domain ended the year with 4,000 more domains registered: 51,400 in total and .CHURCH had almost 5,000 more by the end of the year.

Will they ever launch?
The .UMMAH application was withdrawn but two applications remain in "On -hold", which means that no one can tell if they will ever see the day. The two religious TLDs concerned are .HALAL and .ISLAM

I want to keep an eye on the .ISMAILI Top-Level Domain which gained 4 more domains in December 2017. The .CBN gained one more in december too.

Check the full report here (the report is now available in French too).

Tuesday, January 23, 2018

French new gTLDs in 2017

French companies have submitted 49 new gTLD applications to the ICANN:
  • 33 have been delegated and are active;
  • 15 have been withdrawn;
  • 1 has not been processed.
From that list, 34 are Trademarks but some have been withdrawn. Note that the .OVH new gTLD for example is a trademark too but its domain names can be purchased so it is not listed as a trademark.
Four extensions represent French regions: .CORSICA - .ALSACE - .AQUITAINE (the application was then withdrawn since the region changed its name after the ICANN submission process) and .BZH (for Brittany).
The .PARIS new gTLD is the only city extension from a list of 39 city new gTLD applications (note that .BCN and .BARCELONA city TLDs are counted as one city and not two).
There was just one IDN new gTLD submitted, the .欧莱雅 IDN but it was withdrawn (It means .LOREAL in Chinese). Note that the .LOREAL new gTLD was withdraw too and this came as a huge surprise from our industry.

Different meanings
If the volume of domain names registered - AND PAID - is very important for a registry who sells its domain names through the network of accredited registrars, its signification has a different meaning for a .BRAND new gTLD (specification 13 from the ICANN new gTLD program). For .BRANDs, it means that trademarks have inserted the "new gTLD tool" into their branding, and maybe, long term marketing strategy: the .BNPPARIBAS new gTLD is a good example of this.

Blue or red?
Some registries have been successful installing their domain names:
  • In regard to .BRAND domain name extensions, it should be noticed that .MMA had 1,700 of its domain names installed by december 2017: this is "huge" for a Trademark. Then .BNPPARIBAS - .LECLERC and .WEBER had between 100 and 200 names created. Surprisingly, most French .BRAND new gTLDs start to use their domain names: four trademarks only had less than two domain names created.
  • In regard to extensions dedicated to selling domain names through accredited registrars, we can say that they are few but the .OVH new gTLD (a retail registrar itself) had less domains created by December 2017 than in January 2017: this represents more than 50,000 domains still. the .PARIS extension lost 2,000 form January 2017 to December 2017. Interesting: the .BZH and .CORSICA new gTLDs are growing very slow...but they grow.
A lot of interest in the next round
Following my discussions with various trademarks and French law firms, it appears that there could be interest for 200 French applications in the next round of the ICANN new gTLD program. There could be similar figures in other countries. Let's just hope that the ICANN won't limit the number of applications.

Check the full report here (the report is now available in French too).

Friday, January 19, 2018

ICANN for dummies

I just received an ICANN alert on "Operating Standards for ICANN's Specific Reviews" so I clicked to learn more. The purpose is to offer to comment to solicit feedback on "ICANN things" such as: "to assure selected review teams have the necessary skill set and diversity to conduct a successful review ".

What's the point?
The comments were open in october 2017 so I clicked to check the comments and guess what? There are none and comments are closing in 14 days. It's been opened for 4 months...

A staff is going to use this "no feedback" and it is going to do a reporting to...ICANN, take decisions...what's the point if there is no participation?

Zero feedback: why?
I first tried to understand the content of the page offering to participate. Unless you pay a strong interest and have been following this closely, read English, or work at ICANN, I don't see how someone normal can understand the content of this page.

The same for a lot of the ICANN work
I noticed that very few people participate with their comments and I believe that one of the reasons is just this one: potential participants still don't understand what all this is about:
  • There is no communication;
  • It is difficult to understand.
I checked the page again and my first thoughts is: "I don't want to read it completely because the first two bullet points...I just don't understand them clearly".

Criticizing is easy
Yes it is, but the the reason of this post is to offer solutions to ICANN to drive more people to pay interest and participate. I am a person to follow "things that ICANN does" and there are still plenty of things that I just don't follow up with because I have a problem understanding them! Note that I also have a problem with time (following group meetings requires some).

So I do imagine newcomers or law firms trying to participate in all this.

Time for change?
What about a simplified version of the ICANN website entitled "ICANN for Dummies" or just a paragraph added to these pages entitled "In simple words" (with a sumup written using a simple vocabulary)?

I personally like the simple way pages are designed on the ICANN website, and sections are of interest, but who can read this today but ICANN insiders? Isn't the purpose of such a pages to have people to participate and comment to provide ICANN a feedback? Well, if it is, something written by a non expert could make the difference.

Thursday, January 18, 2018

A web crawler for new gTLDs

ICANN IT has released a UA (Universal Acceptance) Web Crawler that’s been published on GitHub. The website explains that it is "a tool to find the UAC compliance factor of any website". In more simple words: a tool to help you ensure that your domain names and email addresses can be used by all Internet-enabled applications, devices and systems.

What does the crawler do?
I first thought that ICANN had created its own browser but found out that it had nothing to do with this so since I am not geek enough (sorry Don) to try the tool myself, I pasted this from the official website so you can feel free to give it a try yourself:
The UAC Crawler will enable companies and website owners to find out the complexity involved in making their web assets Universal Acceptance Compliant. The idea behind the UAC Crawler portal is that it will give a complexity score which will help nontechnical user base to get started with the UAC journey. The UAC Crawler will crawl the website and generate a list of all internal links - Each use of a link might need to be checked that it can handle UA. It will then generate a score based on how compliant the website links are. The score will be out of 10 and will be based on the following factors:
  • Domain Unicode URL Compliance - Checks if all links are UA compliant. It checks for the HTML encoding of the page to verify if it is UTF compliant;
  • Unicode Email Address Compliance - Checks if all email addresses are UA Compliant;
  • Inactive URL Compliance - The tool also checks for inactive or dead links.
Check the full presentation here.

Blogger users will just love that

I was recently informed that Blogger, the free blogger platform from Google, is about to announce that SSL certificates ("https" secured addresses) will soon be activated for personal domain names.
In more simple words:

  • The SSL certificate will become allowed for personal domains and allow visitors to view your blog over an encrypted connection by visiting "https://";
  • It is free.
I am testing this on gtld.club and guillon.blog (this blog). It seems to work.

For information, Google also offers the SSL certificate on the new version of Google Sites, available in its G Suite.

What more do you need to run a company?

Wednesday, January 17, 2018

Reserved names : ICANN confirms its list

It will have taken four years for the ICANN to finalize the list of reserved names and put a date on it for its implementation at registrars and registries.

What are we talking about?
The list of reserved names consists in blocking certain domain names from being registered by third parties because they could belong to certain identified organizations:
  1. The Red Cross (www.icrc.org);
  2. The International Olympic Committee (www.olympic.org);
  3. International Governmental Organizations (IGOs);
  4. International Non-Governmental Organizations (INGOs).
First of August 2018
The first of august if the deadline when all this must be organized and implemented at registrars and registries. In more simple words, it means that keywords from that list must not be made available for registration anymore in any existing (and coming) domain name extension. An example: you will not be supposed to register a domain name such as www.redcross.whatever - www.nisseki.whatever or www.idea.whatever. Note that this is already the case for most of these strings nut the list has been updated. I suggest to check the complete list because it is a rather long one and there are many words with 3 and 4 characters.

From my understanding, you will receive (or already have received) an email if you use one of these domain names but the ICANN also have plenty of procedures to deal with this. Note that for INGOs, the ICANN suggests to consult an attorney or legal expert for guidance if you have questions.

What do they think about this and why...is this offered to specific organizations and not all trademarks? Well, this has been a question asked by many and I suggest anybody who wants to have that question answered to join the ICANN working groups to try to change this ;-)

You can check the front page for reserved names here and the complete and up-to-date list of reserved names here: it is this that you want to read. For the "bla-bla" and a much longer explanation, it's here.

Thursday, January 11, 2018

Jovenet Consulting in French

For the second time, I spent the necessary hours to translate the second version of the Jovenet Consulting website...into French.
This is now done and I will be adding a few more things soon.

The .BANK and .INSURANCE new gTLDs are NOT removing eligibility verification

A recent letter was sent from the ICANN, by the Registry Services and Engagement Director, to Craig Schwartz in charge of the .BANK and .INSURANCE new gTLDs.

Removal of Eligibility Verification
The letter is entitled "Removal of Eligibility Verification for gTLD: .bank and .insurance for RSEP ID: [#879030]" but it appears that the content is not exactly about this.

A misleading title
It appears that the title of the letter is misleading and in fact, the two registries are not removing eligibility verification. The registries of these two restrictive TLDs, are considering a change in how verification is performed.

Read the letter here.

Friday, January 5, 2018

New gTLDs: a good read

New TLD Launch: Lessons Learned
  1. Far Too Much New GTLDs at Once
  2. High Complexity on the Introduction of New gTLDs
  3. Technical and Operational Challenges Due to Non-Scalability
  4. Marketing and Awareness – the Assumptions Were Wrong
  5. Unpleasant Pitfalls
  6. Future Prospects
Read the article on CicleId

.BRAND new gTLD Reports are updated once a month: CLICK HERE !