Wednesday, May 22, 2019

2 new features added to the Trademark Clearinghouse

Two new features were added to the Trademark Clearinghouse:
  1. Update a Valid POU to a Verified Trademark Record: it allows trademark holders/agents to update the POU documents through the Mark details page in case the current POU documents submitted no longer reflect the validity of the trademark.
  2. "Invalid" Trademark Record - Extra correction: this new functionality is accessible directly through the TMCH web interface for trademark holders with a prepaid account and agents. It gives the possibility to modify either the trademark name or the trademark registration number (not both).
To learn more: check the TMCH News.

Sunday, May 19, 2019

.AMAZON : Approved !

This is what the paragraph from the latest "Approved Board Resolutions | Special Meeting of the ICANN Board" says on consideration of Amazon Corporation’s proposal on ACTO member states continuing concerns (.AMAZON New gTLD Application):
Resolved (2019.05.15.13), the Board finds the Amazon corporation proposal of 17 April 2019 acceptable, and therefore directs the ICANN org President and CEO, or his designee(s), to continue processing of the .AMAZON applications according to the policies and procedures of the New gTLD Program. This includes the publication of the Public Interest Commitments (PICs), as proposed by the Amazon corporation, for a 30-day public comment period, as per the established procedures of the New gTLD program.
What's of interest to me
I did a copy-paste of the below because that is what is happening next...at least that is what the paper says. The future will tell about reality:

The April 2019 proposal included, in addition to the creation of a joint Steering Committee, the following commitments:
  1. “Not use as domain names in each .AMAZON TLD those terms that have a primary and well-recognized significance to the culture and heritage of the Amazonia region;
  2. Provide nine domain names in each .AMAZON TLD to be used for non-commercial purposes by ACTO and its member states to enhance the visibility of the region; and
  3. Block from all use up to 1500 domain names in each .AMAZON TLD that have a primary and well recognized significance to the culture and heritage of the Amazonia region”
The Amazon corporation also notes in its proposal that its TLDs would be “highly-restricted .BRANDs” and that “Amazon would only register domain names that align with its global brand strategy so that the .AMAZON TLDs are strongly affiliated with the reputation of the Amazon brand, which should eliminate concerns of ACTO and its member states that third parties will abusively use the TLDs.

Finally, the Amazon corporation stated that it would host the nine domain names noted above and would make use of “proactive security controls paired with reactive and detective controls to offer the most comprehensive approach to security” related to the “provisioning and configuration of .AMAZON domains.”

Thursday, May 16, 2019

Numbers from the Trademark Clearinghouse

The Trademark Clearinghouse issued a new statistical report:
  • 45,154 Trademark record submitted;
  • 43% submitted for multiple years;
  • 84% registered by Trademark Clearinghouse agents;
  • 82% are verified;
  • 117 countries covered;
  • 131 jurisdictions.
Check the report


Saturday, May 11, 2019

Is it time for a .ROTHSCHILD new gTLD?

This article follows the finding of this publication, announcing the signing of an overall agreement for the use of the Rothschild brand in order to continue growing the family's various businesses.

The Rothschild Name
One would not necessarily know about it but there is a long story around the Rothschild name: branches from the same family have been fighting for the use of their own name. Have a look at www.rothschild.com to understand...who's who; but whatever has happened in the past, there a new chapter of this story. The good news is that the family has come to an agreement for the use of its name.

An agreement which matches with the use of a .BRAND
This powerful family has come to an internal agreement for the use of its own name so...isn't it time to look ahead and investigate which tools could strongly strengthen the Rothschild name for the next century? A ".BRAND" new gTLD could be one of them and here is an idea of...how to start a use of it.

Short reminder
a ".BRAND" new gTLD is a personalized domain name extension which allows to register domain name ending i the name of the brand. For example here, the Rothschild family would be able to create domain names ending in ".rothschild", instead of, for example, ".com".

Which benefit?
Both families work in the business of banking, but not only; and what's of interest when talking about creating personalized domain names is "generic keywords". When operating a .BRAND (dotBrand) domain name extension, the owner instantly acquires the ownership of the generic domain names he creates: no need to ask anyone, no authorization to have from a third party (but the other branch of the family in our case) and also...no domain name is already registered since the family would be the only one allowed to create them. SEO specialists probably understand that last sentence.

Which unique keywords are used by both families?
This is rather easy to find when taking a look at each family's main front page:
  1. ROTHSCHILD & CO :
    1. Global Advisory
    2. Wealth and Asset Management
    3. Merchant Banking
  2. EDMOND DE ROTHSCHILD :
    1. Private Banking
    2. Asset Management
    3. Private Equity
    4. Corporate Finance
There are many more (Wine, Philanthropy, Art, etc...) but this is the main idea: structuring businesses behind simple keywords to point to them online and clarify who does what behind a same name. Domain names ending in ".com" don't offer that option.

Challenging
Now the family has come to an agreement for the use of its name, and would such a project to create its "mega brand" make sense for the family, some question would need to be answered: which internal domain name policy to allow a branch the use of a generic domain name such as bank.rothschild for example? Which kind of application: community or trademark? What about the project itself; which use of this specific extension: just domain names? What about emails: how to ensure that emails dedicated to Asset Management are sent to the right family?

Exciting isn't it?

;-)

Thursday, May 9, 2019

Milestone: 14,000 .BEST registrations !

The .BEST new gTLD Registry hits 14,000 domain name registrations: that's 1,000 more per month! Last month, the registry hit a new milestone with a total of 13,000 registrations.


To grab your ".best" domain name for less than €2, check www.go.best.

Wednesday, May 8, 2019

New gTLD alerts by Email

Many have subscribed to the group that I created to send News about new gTLDs but for some, receiving all alerts by EMAIL is better, so I have just created a service for this.

For the moment, the group and its feed stay open to read the information and I apologize for kicking out everyone who had subscribed by Email ;-)

Anyone interested in subscribing to this service will proceed through Paypal and will start receiving alerts directly in his or her email.

You can subscribe here too in the right column of this website. To post your News, contact Jean Guillon.

Saturday, May 4, 2019

Why that Digital Magician chose a ".best"

Romain Lalire, French Digital Magician, explains his choice for a ".best" domain name in this video. Romain works mainly for luxury trademarks doing private shows. SEO is important and that is mainly the reason of his choice to use a domain name ending in ".best": Romain noticed that users search for "best magician" in search engines.


Watch all .BEST videos here.

Thursday, May 2, 2019

GreenTech drops 2 new gTLD applications

On 18 Dec 2014, ICANN and GreenTech Consultancy Company W.L.L. entered into a Registry Agreement under which GreenTech Consultancy Company W.L.L. started to operate :
  • the .MOBILY Top-Level Domain and;
  • the .موبايلي (.xn--mgbb9fbpob) TLD.
The date of the termination notice is: 28 February 2019.

In more simple words, there won't be domain names ending in ".mobily" or the ".موبايلي" Internationalized Domain Name extension.

Learn more here.

Wednesday, May 1, 2019

Just updated: new gTLD reports (May 2019)

New gTLD reports were just updated for the month of April/May 2019. Each report is a monthly snapshot and allows to investigate which new domain name extension sees an increase in domain name registrations, or not.

20 categories are updated:
  1. New gTLDs related to POLITICS (.gop - .vote - .republican - .democrat - etc...);
  2. New gTLDs related to LUXURY (.rich - .yachts - .chanel - etc...);
  3. New gTLDs related to the MUSIC community (.music - .band - .hiphop - etc...);
  4. Multiple Registries : group of Registries operating five (5) and more domain name extensions;
  5. 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);
  6. New gTLDs related to CATERING and CULINARY (.restaurant - .kitchen - .bar - etc...);
  7. New gTLDs related to PHOTOGRAPHY (.photo - .film - .gallery - etc...);
  8. New gTLDs related to CITIES : these are city names only (.paris - .london - .tokyo - etc...);
  9. New gTLDs related to COMPANIES : new domain name extensions that we believe a company should keep its eyes on;
  10. New gTLDs related to the LAW and LEGAL matters (.legal - .attorney - .lawyer - etc...);
  11. New gTLDs related to FINANCE (.credit - .capital - .finance - etc...);
  12. New gTLDs related to a COLOR (.orange - .pink - .green - etc...);
  13. New gTLDs related to SPORTS (.hockey - .basketball - .ski - etc...);
  14. New gTLDs related to ALCOHOL (.beer - .wine - .vodka - etc...);
  15. New gTLDs related to REAL ESTATE (.realestate - .realtor - .villas - etc...);
  16. FRENCH new gTLD applications : these are applications submitted by French companies only;
  17. New gTLDs related to RELIGION (.catholic - .bible - .church - etc...);
  18. New gTLDs related to CARS (.taxi - .auto - .car - etc...);
  19. New gTLDs related to HEALTH (.health - .doctor - .hospital - etc...);
  20. New gTLDs related to ADULTS (no comment).
These reports are available in French too.

Saturday, April 27, 2019

Last call for .INC Sunrise Registrations

The Sunrise period for .INC domain name registration is closing the 30th of April 2019.


Millions of company names end with “Inc.”

Companies across any industry around the world can use .inc domains for anything - from corporate sites to newsrooms, investor relations pages, employee portals, and more.

Please find a presentation (PDF download) of the .inc domain.
More information available on https://get.inc

Thursday, April 25, 2019

The .STARHUB new gTLD drops it

This is an application from Singapore. As explained on its website, StarHub is a leading homegrown Singapore company that brings to people, homes and enterprises world-class communications, entertainment and digital solutions.

Dated March the 12th, StarHub sent its termination letter to the ICANN asking the termination process to be initiated as soon as possible.

What the application said:
The .starhub gTLD will create a new generation gTLD serving the interests of end users by providing an authoritative internet space where information, services and resources of the brand, its affiliates and partners that are associated with the brand will be closely controlled by StarHub Ltd (StarHub). The majority of the anticipated domain name registrations in the .starhub gTLD will be used in the promotion and communication of the StarHub brand and its info-communication and multimedia services. A subset of domain names has the potential to be created and used for online communication and marketing purposes, with internet users assured of brand authenticity.
Details from the procedure are available in this letter (PDF download)

Friday, April 12, 2019

The .MUSIC new gTLD is a go!

Domain names ending in ".music" (instead of ".com") are coming. The news is fresh and from the 8 applicants from 2012, one remains: Constantinos Roussos, from Music.us, is the final winner of this 7 years fight between multiple applicants.


Announced yesterday in a Tweet, Constantinos pointed mad new gTLD evangelists (like me) to a link proving the change:
  • Application Status: Evaluation Complete
  • Contention Resolution Status: Resolved

A "community" application
The application states that .MUSIC is a community application. It means that these domain names will be restricted to being registered by members of the music community. Let's hope that restrictions to future registrants (those who will register such domain names) won't block them from registering one. It is what happened to the applications of multiple registry Dominion Registry (and a few others), who finally decided to remove restrictions from some of their extensions.

Note that this TLD is already available in the monthly new gTLD reports from Jovenet Consulting.

What the application says
Question 18A from the application "Describe the mission/purpose of your proposed gTLD" is a rather long one so I extracted what I believe is of my personal and selfish interest. I'd suggest to read the full application for those who want full details:

The .MUSIC Mission / Purpose is:
  • Creating a trusted, safe online haven for music consumption & licensing
  • Establishing a safe home on the Internet for Music Community (ʺCommunityʺ) members regardless of locale or size
  • Protecting intellectual property & fighting piracy
  • Supporting Musiciansʹ welfare, rights & fair compensation
  • Promoting music and the arts, cultural diversity & music education
  • Following a multi-stakeholder approach of fair representation of all types of global music constituents, including a rotating regional Advisory Committee Board working in the Community’s best interest
.MUSIC will effectively differentiate itself by addressing the key online usage issues of safety, trust, consistency, brand recognition as well as communicate site subject-matter: music-related content. The TLD will be exclusive to the Community and will incorporate enhanced safeguards and Use policies to protect creators, intellectual property and rights holders.

DotMusic will also provide non-registry services and activities which have been established through ongoing outreach efforts. Community members need to be able to distinguish themselves from illegal or unlicensed sites. Ensuring monies flow to rightful owners and the Music Community is critical to the .MUSIC Mission. Purpose-driven services and activities are:
  1. Development of Music Community Social Network Premium Domain Channels (Channels) sorted by category types, e.g. genres. It will leverage Search Engine Optimization (SEO) best practices to improve .MUSIC website search result rankings. The objective is for .MUSIC domains to signal a badge of trust that enables search engines to provide music consumers more relevant and safer search results while reducing infringing and unlicensed rogue sites. Premium Channel development will also include a global Song Registry;
  2. Promoting arts and music through sponsorships, events and Music Community activities; Enriching society with artistic and cultural diversity;
  3. Advancing music education and the study of music in school curriculum by donating proceeds of domain registrations to relevant causes;
  4. Re-inventing music discovery and search innovation by leading the way to establish the Industry standard for official music sites to benefit the at-large global Music Community and the Internet;
  5. Enabling legal music licensing via a global Song Registry akin to the International Music Registry (IMR - www.wipo.int⁄imr) & Global Repertoire Database (GRD - www.globalrepertoiredatabase.com ⁄ International Copyright Enterprise) initiatives. 
DotMusic serves the Community without conflicts of interest and is accountable to the Community by establishing an Advisory Committee & Policy Board with representation from each constituency in the Community. The Committee will advise and provide perspective on .MUSIC issues such as broad policy matters and introductions of new services to meet Community needs.

The Premium Channels will maximize the competitive landscape and innovation in both the music and domain space.

A Global Protected Marks Lists (GPML) will reserve all major music brands and established artists, such as RIAA-certified platinum-selling bands.

Phased launches provides rights holders a first-come in the .MUSIC Sunrise, auction of multiple initial landrush domain inquiries, and eventually allows all stakeholders of the Community to register. All registrants must adhere to restricted Use, Name and Anti-Abuse policies that will be monitored to prevent bad practices harming the Music Community.

The full application can be downloaded here.

Note that what the applications says is now "dated" so anything can happen. Oh, and by the way, I can't wait for Madonna.music

Wednesday, April 10, 2019

The .BNL new gTLD was terminated

The termination of the .BNL new gTLD was requested by the Banca Nazionale del Lavoro (from group BNP PARIBAS).


This is what ICANN answered to the applicant's request:
On 20 February 2019, Banca Nazionale del Lavoro notified ICANN org of its intent to terminate the .BNL Registry Agreement entered into on 24 July 2014. Pursuant to Section 4.4(b) of the Registry Agreement, Registry Operator may terminate the Registry Agreement for any reason upon one hundred eighty (180) calendar day advance notice. 
Pursuant to the terms of Section 4.5 of the Registry Agreement, ICANN org consulted with Banca Nazionale del Lavoro to assess whether to transition operation of the .BNL top-level domain (TLD) to a successor Registry Operator. 
Subject to an ongoing evaluation, ICANN org has made a preliminary determination that operation of the .BNL TLD need not be transitioned to a successor Registry Operator. ICANN org’s review and determinations regarding transition to a successor registry are subject to Section 4.5 of the Registry Agreement. 
ICANN org's preliminary determination to not transition the TLD to a successor Registry Operator is based on ICANN org's assessment that transitioning the TLD is not necessary to protect the public interest. Banca Nazionale del Lavoro attested to and ICANN org confirmed the following: 
  • All domain name registrations in the TLD are registered to, and maintained by, Registry Operator or its Affiliates for their exclusive use, and
  • Registry Operator does not sell, distribute or transfer control or use of any registrations in the TLD to any third party that is not an Affiliate of Registry Operator.
Check the ICANN termination letter (PDF download)

Monday, April 8, 2019

So: which new gTLDs are becoming mainstream?

I went through the exciting exercise of checking all March 2019 new gTLD reports to extract which domain name extension shows an interesting learning curve (or something strange happening). This is what I noticed for the 20 categories of TLDs:
  1. In the list of new gTLDs for Politics, the first new gTLD to have been delegated from the ICANN new gTLD program - .GURU (63,000) - lost 2,000 registrations since January 2018 (not 2019). I was very excited to grab one when it launched, but I dropped it then. Globally speaking,these extensions, some being negative, don't attract consumers so much.
  2. In Luxury, the .VIP (840,000) and .BEST (12,000) Top-Level Domains keep growing but surprisingly, many .BRAND new gTLDs like .GUCCI - .CHANEL or .CARTIER seem to have found no use of their extension yet.
  3. In Music, the .LIVE new gTLD goes up with 332,000 registrations and increasing but .PARTY seems to die little by little. The .BAND and .DANCE new gTLD have an interesting progression curve: they've kept growing in volume since January 2018.
  4. Multiple Registries operate more than 5 new gTLDs: Donuts, Radix and Google are growing in volume significantly.
  5. Singular or Plural? Some of these extensions are clearly failures... Is it so because they exist in two versions and no one would invest in such a risk? That's my opinion but I also know that most registrant, when registering one of these domains, don't necessary know about the existence of a second version of the extension. I call these a trap. I think that the .HOTEL, when it launches, will make sense for a hotel and I would definitely buy my name as a hotel.
  6. The Catering report shows that the .FOOD new gTLD has now 6 registrations instead of one in January and February: will it launch soon?
  7. In Photography, the .ART new gTLD stands out of the crowd with a very interesting learning curve: it has more than 50,000 registrations today.
  8. City name new gTLDs are a little disappointing but Japanese cities like .TOKYO (first city to have more than 100,000 domain names registered), .NAGOYA and .OKINAWA grew in March 2019.
  9. The listing dedicated to companies keeps showing that I was not wrong about on the new gTLDs that companies should register their domain name with. Some of them I would not buy but basically, all are growing in volume. 
  10. In "Law and Justice", not many TLDs and not much is happening.
  11. The Finance report is an interesting one for .BRAND new gTLDs, it is the opposite of the Luxury report: many brands are using their TLD and registering dozens of domain names.
  12. Colors: there are 6 of them and one is a Trademark: .BLUE - .PINK and .GREEN are growing slowly below 10,000 registrations.
  13. In Sports, the .YOGA - .RUN and .FITNESS have kept growing since January 2019. Owner of the .NIKE new gTLD published a job offer, let's hope that part of the role will be to develop the TLD.
  14. Alcohol: guess what: .WINE - .BEER and .VODKA grow in volume: slowly but they grow.
  15. The Real Estate report is a long one and 3 new gTLDs are of interest in March: the .REALESTATE - .CASA (house in Spanish) and .HOMES
  16. In French new gTLD applications, .BRAND extensions are truly used and many domains are being registered.
  17. None of the religious TLDs are of interest in March and .WED (for "wedding") remains silent.
  18. None of the TLDs dedicated to the automotive industry has more than 10,000 registrations. Surprisingly, some .BRANDs have more registrations than some generic TLDs dedicated to selling domain names to the general public through the network of accredited registrars! The .AUDI new gTLD registered more than 1,330 domains already.
  19. The .HEALTH and .DOCTOR are growing in volume below the 10,000 registrations and .BRANDs are still searching a use for their TLD.
All new gTLD reports are available here.

Note that I often use "new gTLDs", "Top-Level-Domains", "TLDs" or "domain name extensions" not to make these publications too boring. Also, some TLDs listed and losing traction month after month belong to the same multiple registries.


Monday, April 1, 2019

The .MADRID Sunrise Period was announced

The Trademark Clearinghouse just announced the .MADRID Sunrise Period.

WHEN
  • Start: Tuesday, 16 July, 2019 - 16:00;
  • End: Thursday, 3 October, 2019 - 16:00.
WHAT
Extracted from the application submitted to the ICANN, this is what the application said:
The Comunidad de Madrid (the Government of the Region of Madrid) is applying for the .madrid TLD to serve the Madrid’s community, defined as the community of individuals and legal entities with a bona fide presence, direct or indirect, in the Region of Madrid, including Madrid as the capital of Spain.

The goals of .madrid are:
  • Facilitating digital communications from, to and within the Region of Madrid.
  • Providing a platform for the urban development in the digital space of the Region of Madrid.
  • Strengthening the image of Madrid in the online world. 
This is to be achieved by:
  • Actively designing and developing the .madrid TLD name space with a focus on the needs of the Region of Madrid, involving cultural, civil society, business and public-sector stakeholders.
  • Allowing registrations of second-level domains in the .madrid TLD by individuals and organizations with a bona fide nexus with the Madrid area.
  • Operating the .madrid TLD under the stewardship of the Region of Madrid in consultation with the local public authorities of the area and the private-sector stakeholders. 
The .madrid TLD will be the new trusted domain-name space that offers a secure and global option for local institutions, companies, brands and citizens. It will allow them all to be present online by creating a multicultural space that integrates and facilitates new opportunities; a space that enables the materialization of public and private initiatives in order to promote and strengthen the brand image online driven by the solid image that Madrid already enjoys globally.

As .madrid Registry, the Region of Madrid (Comunidad de Madrid) is well aware of and fully acknowledges, the responsibility that arises from the management of the domain name ad commits to manage it in full respect of the interest of both the .madrid and the larger Internet communities.

The constant and sustained effort made during the last years, makes that the implementation of the Information Society in the Madrid area is a consolidated fact and in this sense, the Region of Madrid is the most suitable public institution to execute the management and running of the .madrid TLD.

Learn more on the TMCH calendar.

Friday, March 29, 2019

The .EPOST new gTLD was terminated

The .EPOST new gTLD registry agreement was terminated: on 27 March 2019, ICANN provided Deutsche Post AG with a Notice of Registry Agreement Termination.


What the application said:

According to the Applicant, Deutsche Post AG (ʺDeutsche Postʺ), the mission and purpose of the .EPOST TLD are manifold, as will be further explained below.

Broadly speaking, the mission and purpose can be divided into brand-, convenience-, and security-related issues. The security-related issues refer to the idea underlying the product E-POSTBRIEF which - generally speaking - aims at taking the classic letter into the Internet, thereby supporting confidential, binding and reliable communication (i.e. secure electronic communication, as well as trusted transactions).

At this, the product E-POSTBRIEF is the pioneering product of the E-POST-platform which, in the future, will combine various services and products all dealing with trusted transactions and secure electronic communications - such as payment and⁄or identification services. It is envisioned that .EPOST will serve as the umbrella domain for all of these services and products.

The benefits of .EPOST are envisioned to be as follows:
  1. SECURITY FOR THE BRAND: First and foremost, securing and protecting the distinctive component of one of Applicantʹs key brands (ʺE-POSTBRIEFʺ and ʺE-POSTʺ respectively) and popular URL ʺEPOST.deʺ as a gTLD;
  2. SUPPORT FOR INTERNATIONALIZATION: Provide for a global platform in order to effectuate Deutsche Postʹs plans to roll out ⁄ to internationalize the innovative services offered by Deutsche Post under these brands;
  3. SUPPORT FOR NAVIGATION ⁄ ORIENTATION: Since both the Applicantʹs product in general as well as the key brands ʹE-POSTBRIEFʹ, respectively ʹE-POSTʹ in particular have many different (sub-)categories, features and⁄or functions, the gTLD .EPOST enables an unambiguous and distinctive navigation or mapping for the users.
  4. gTLD AS A SEAL OF QUALITY: 
    1. the gTLD as an ʹextensionʹ of the brand and its values: As not only the Applicantʹs but also the key brandsʹ (ʹE-POSTBRIEFʹ and ʹE-POSTʹ) main value is ʹtrustʹ, the gTLD should provide stakeholders of the Applicant with a recognizable and trusted identifier on the Internet. Such stakeholders include, but are not limited to:
      1. its subsidiaries in various countries;
      2. affiliate partners; 
      3. sponsorships;
      4. prospective and current customers; and
      5. directors and officers of Deutsche Post and its subsidiaries, including its employees.
    2. the gTLD as an ʹextensionʹ of the brandʹs promise ⁄ unique selling proposition: Since the Applicantʹs product ʹE-POSTʹ and other upcoming products enables customers to safely and securely communicate online, it seems logical to provide such stakeholders with a trusted, secure and safe Internet environment under the control of the Applicant, in which they are able to obtain information from and communicate with the Applicant and where they are able to obtain genuine information provided by Deutsche Post and its approved stakeholders.

Wednesday, March 27, 2019

The .INC Sunrise Period begins

Announced by the Trademark Clearinghouse, the Sunrise Period for domain names ending in .INC is starting.

WHEN
  • START: Wednesday, 27 March, 2019 - 16:00
  • END: Tuesday, 30 April, 2019 - 16:00
WHAT the applications says
.inc intends to be an open gTLD for those who believe that a name itself can make a difference.

The .inc Registry believes in the economic and social value of a broadly generic namespace whose meaning will be defined by the users and registrants of the domains rather than predetermined by the Registry. The vision of the Registry is that the availability of .inc TLD as a distinct, attractive new frontier for the Internet challenges the prevailing mindset within and beyond the industry, which in turn serves to foster innovations with prospects of redefining how namespaces can be imagined.

The mission and purposes of the .inc Registry are:
  1. To operate the .inc TLD as an open namespace that is globally recognized as a frontier and platform for Inter-connectivity, Internet activity and development;
  2. To promote a socially responsible approach for the development of the .inc namespace that balances the respect for the rights of others with fostering innovation;
  3. To encourage the creative use of domain names and to enhance consumer choice with the acceptance that names can represent value in and of themselves; and,
  4. To preserve and advance the security and stability of the Internet and the DNS in the operation of a economically viable and socio-technically sustainable registry.
Many feel that “value” is created only with the content and services served under a domain, while the domain name itself is purely an address providing means for navigating, or occasionally “categorizing”, the Internet. The .inc Registry challenges that mindset with a proposition that domain names can be substance itself, echoing Marshall McLuhan’s celebrated observation that “the medium is the message”.

The Registry intends to offer “.inc” domain names for open registrations. Nevertheless, the Registry understands and acknowledges that the string “inc” is used as a short form of “incorporated” and a form of registered legal entity in the United States, Canada, Australia and the Philippines. What is important to note is that the collective represents a minority in the global context based on their collective population, Internet users as well as size of the economies as compared to the world at large.

Even though this represents a minority community, the Registry is committed to take strong measures to curb abusive registrations that exploit this. These include, in addition to standard Rights Protection Mechanisms, comprehensive extra reservation and Sunrise processes, prolonged priority periods, special claims and notification procedures that aim to ensure a stable and orderly launch of the .inc TLD into the technical and social fabric of the Internet.

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: a critical feature of the DNS, with a single authoritative root, is in its maintenance of global uniqueness of names. As a broad generic TLD, “.inc” presents itself as an attractive alternative to existing generic TLDs. While the Registry believes that .inc would likely attract serious business users, we further believe in allowing the users of “.inc” to ultimately define what it means to them. The meaning of words and phrases changes over time. And in the context of a broad generic TLD, we believe that not pre-determining what it fully stands for may in fact be better.
    As a good example, “.com” which was intended to mean “commerce” is perceived by many internet users as possibly meaning “company”, “communications”, “computer” and others. The .inc Registry aspires to let end users and registrants define what “.inc” means to them. Through which, the Registry aims to advance constructive competition by providing a fully open and broadly generic namespace, which in turn challenges the prevailing mindset about top-level domain names, which often believes either in a category-based notion or a TLD agnostic view.
    The .inc Registry imagines a new possibility where a TLD represents a meaningful part of a domain name expressing a deliberate choice for an identity. For example, “Monsters Inc” was the name of a feature film from Disney, and “monsters.inc” would be a good domain for the movie even when “Monsters Inc” is not actually a registered incorporation. The Registry believes in opening up further opportunities for creative development of .inc names.
  2. Enhance Consumer Trust: the .inc Registry is dedicated to ensuring a secure and stable TLD platform (technology infrastructure) as well as an orderly introduction of the TLD (policies) to enhance consumer trust for the Internet and the DNS. The Registry will put in place Rights Protection Mechanisms and Abuse Prevention & Mitigation policies above and beyond the standard ICANN requirements described in Specification 7 of the New gTLD Registry Agreement. Furthermore, the Registry believes in maintaining an open TLD with broad appeal without predetermining.
    Strong and comprehensive RPM and APM policies serves to curb abusive registrations and enhance consumer trust. At the same time, overly restrictive or protective policies would mean a bias in favour of corporations and vested interests, which goes against consumer trust. Therefore, the Registry believes in a balanced 3-prong approach:
    1. Thorough set of startup processes, along with robust and effective procedures, will be put in place to ensure that prior rights of others are protected through priority registrations by eligible registrants (including duly registered “inc.” designated companies);
    2. Open registrations with equitable allocation processes (non-chaotic contention resolution processes during startup, and first-come-first-served approach upon GoLive) that do not compromise the integrity of the registry (including special considerations for reserving names of duly registered “inc.” designated companies);
    3. Ongoing abuse prevention mechanisms including the use of standard RPM dispute resolution processes, as well as additional claims and notification processes (especially for duly registered “inc.” designated companies).
      Together, protective startup mechanisms, open and equitable allocation processes as well as ongoing measures to mitigate against abuse, provides the foundation that enhances consumer trust.
  3. Promote Consumer Choice: as an open gTLD, the .inc Registry believes in promoting consumer choice by offering a broadly generic name for registration. Furthermore, the Registry believes that the registrants and end users of “.inc” domains will eventually define what “.inc” means. This promotes consumer choice of how a gTLD can be used and what it represents.
Check the date on the Sunrise Calendar from the Trademark Clearinghouse.

Tuesday, March 26, 2019

New gTLDs: how to distribute your news

Send an email to post@jovenet.consulting:
  1. The object of your email is the Title of your news;
  2. The content of your email is the Content of your news:
    1. Write one line of text, no more;
    2. Add a "Learn more" or a "Read the full story" with a hyperlink to your article.
  3. Done.
Your news will be used and distributed by Jovenet Consulting to its new gTLD network.

Note that content is moderated so spam, crap, and content not related to new gTLDs don't go through.

To check if you were published, see here.

Monday, March 25, 2019

Follow-up with new gTLDs

There are several way to follow-up with new gTLDs. One of them is to check all known websites informing about the subject. Another one is to subscribe to a "feed" which delivers the news to you. These are the some tools you can use:
  1. The new gTLD Group on Google:
    1. To post: email to post@jovenet.consulting (group is moderated)
    2. To read: just visit the group
    3. To receive alerts: ask for an invitation
  2. The gTLD Newsletter;
  3. The new gTLD group on LinkedIn (note that LinkedIn does not send alerts anymore and requires to visit the group;
  4. More options are available here.

Friday, March 22, 2019

Owner of Bank.best explains his acquisition

A Trader just acquired BANK.best and explains his plans for this very specific domain name.

 

".BEST ORIGINAL SERIES" are episodes of the .Best team or guests, explaining who they are, what they do, what is their vision, and what are the news coming.

Subscribe here.

Monday, March 18, 2019

Bright way to inform about new extensions

I just saw that offer for Premium domain names sold "in a package" and I find that this is a bright way to offer them. If I am not so much in buying Premium domain names or participating to auctions, I believe that considering categories of TLDs is very important prior to buying a domain name at the regular price. For example, one would be interested to know that there is a dozen of domain name extensions dedicated to the business of Music. When preparing to buy a domain name to publish a content about Music...one should better know about what exists on the market.

Categories of TLDs did not exist in the past
In "the past", you would have bought a ".com", or a domain name from your country of residence ending in two letters. Today is different, when buying a new domain name within a certain business, it remains difficult to be informed that many extensions could match with the second level domain desired; even worse when the plural version of a domain name extension exists: if you are in the Real Estate business for example, you should check this list of domain name extensions before buying. I would also suggest to check that list of similar extensions too...and maybe that one too* for plurals.

What I saw
I follow a limited number of Twitter accounts and the Registry of African Geo TLDs Twitted this link on which you can read ".Africa .CapeTown .Durban and .Joburg domains from only $1.50 per slice". As a person interested in buying domain names from this region, I would certainly be interested in knowing that these domain name extensions also exist for the domain name that I am about to buy.

What about Registrars?
I know how difficult it is to create the right algorithm to suggest registrants the right domain name but unless I am wrong, and after checking at many registrars, all focus on the second level domain and none on the first level domain itself.

* These lists are frequently copied by Corporate Registrars lacking ideas ;-)

Tuesday, March 12, 2019

New bTLD stands for blockchain Top-Level Domain

Isn't it exciting? A new ICANN acronym was just invented and we could hear about it while the next round of the ICANN new gTLD program prepares. Small reminder:
  • new gTLD stands for "new generic Top-Level Domain";
  • ccTLD stands for "country code Top-Level Domain";
  • bTLD now stands for blockchain Top-Level Domain".

Monday, March 11, 2019

New gTLDs: Round 2 possible timeline

Quarter one of 2022 is the possible date announced for the next round of the ICANN new gTLD program: 10 years after. This slide was extracted from the an ICANN meeting yesterday.

(click to enlarge)

To follow up with all this, check the group for new gTLD News. For questions: Jovenet Consulting.

Thursday, March 7, 2019

Community new gTLD applications: wrong choice

This article was first published on CircleId.

Community new gTLD applications were one of the three options offered by version 1 one of ICANN new gTLD applicant guidebook. It was also possible submit a "generic" or a "geographic application". I dug on the ICANN website and found out that, in the end - and according to me only - it was a bed choice to submit such application.

The figures
  • The ICANN website lists 84 applications submitted to the ICANN;
  • 52 were delegated;
  • 20 were withdrawn;
  • 10 have/had objection(s);
  • 9 receive a warning from a government (at least);
  • 5 had a string contention;
  • 4 are still "on hold" (.MUSIC - .KIDS - .MERCH - .HOTEL);
  • 3 were not approved;
  • none received an applicant support from the ICANN;
  • the .BUGATTI new gTLD is a community application (...), not a .BRAND
  • Many trademarks submitted community applications;
  • some city names and territories are listed as community applications (.PARIS - .WIEN - .BZH ...);
  • ICANN sometimes forgets to update its datas so some of the 84 applications mentioned could have changed.
"Volumes", "usage" or both?
I went through the 52 delegated applications to investigate which ones have lots of domain name registrations and which ones don't. Volumes of domain name creations are important because they are a good indicator if the new gTLD is a successful project or not. Now: are volumes an indicator of usage: it is up to you to decide and don't care what you think ;-) This is what I found:
  • The .OVH new gTLD has 62,000+ domain name registrations;
  • The .BERLIN new gTLD has 54,800+
  • The .PARIS new gTLD has 20,900+
  • The .SWISS new gTLD has 17,900+
  • The .WIEN new gTLD has 15,400+
  • The .HAMBURG new gTLD has 23,400+
  • The .SCOT new gTLD has 11,500+
All other new gTLDs unlisted here have less than 10,000 registrations. This is surprising because we have very generic terms such as .ARCHI (for architecture), the .SKI and .NGO new gTLDs. The .ECO domain name extension has 3,8400+ domain names created.

Conclusion
We can easily see that none of these applications has passed the 100,000 registrations. If I perfectly understand that prices are not the same to register a domain name and "usage" matters; well, I also know how much it cost to maintain a registry and I would not want to operate a registry that has less than 10,000 registrations. In all of these cases, and no matter if a multiple registry lowers its cost operating multiple extensions, I am not sure that it is worth it to submit "another" community application in the next round of the ICANN new gTLD program...just because it limits domain name registrations to that specific community and also...because figures demonstrate that on a list of 52 TLDs, 7 only have more than 10,000 domain names on the market. Note that this does not even mean that they are used with a real website. We also know that restricting registrations to a so called community is just a line on the paper, anybody can pay to register a .SKI domain name (for example), it is absolutely not "restricted" in reality.

So: worth it for the next round? No...but that's just according to me.

Wednesday, March 6, 2019

.BEST : complementary to .COM ?

Announced this morning by the registry, the number of 10,000 domain name registrations was reached. The number is interesting here because it took a few months for the new operator of ".best" domain names to reach out to this number compared to other new registries which have existed...for years and were created during the first wave of the ICANN new gTLD program dated 2012 (the first TLDs were delegated in 2013).


Just for the note
It is important to mention that:
  1. the registry is not (yet?) present in China;
  2. the innovation around this specific registry is coming in the future: an entire social network based on the use of domain names ending in ".best"
.BEST is complementary to .COM
There are "descriptive keywords" and "descriptive keywords". If this sentence means nothing in English, it means something in French: the ICANN new gTLD program offers plenty of keyword possibilities; some are defined by the program itself: "generic", "community" and "geographic"; but if a geographic TLD offers precision, "generic" and "community" can mean lots of different things. For example, did you know that .BRAND new gTLDs were considered as "generic" Top-Level Domains?

If I will leave the definition of "community" TLDs apart, since defining a community is always hard, generic TLDs can deliver much more precision:
  • Simple keywords referring to an industry subject like the .REALESTATE new gTLD;
  • Niche TLDs like sports: the .TENNIS new gTLD for example or .PIZZA for a specific food;
  • Reference keywords: the .COM Top-Level Domain is one since time made of this string a reference. The .BEST new gTLD is one too.
One will not start the website of his company using a ".best" domain name because it would sound sarcastic, but if one's business did not want to be the best...then why bother creating a business? This is where ".best" domain names should also be registered and used by ".com" registrants: ".best" domain names should point to the best of a ".com" websites. For example, many heard of the French "Les Galleries Lafayette" and its famous website www.galerieslafayette.com : isn't it time to offer the best of "Les Galleries Lafayette" on www.galerieslafayette.best showing sales only for example? I'd definitely visit!

The best alternative for promotion
According to a recent Twit showing ".best" new domain name registrations, it is clear that .BEST domains are becoming the best alternative to promote a product or a service in addition to a ".com" Trademark domain. For example, Layerhost, a hosting service provider registered layerhost.com for its Trademark domain name and also webhosting.best to promote its web hosting service. This company wants to say that it offers the best web hosting.


In this type of naming strategy, we can easily imagine Marriott.com being the first to register generic domain names such as: hotels.best, nychotel.best, londonhotel.best, vegashotel.best, ...

Investors are concerned
Registration figures also demonstrate that the .BEST new gTLD as a huge potential for investors in terms of domain name availability when mixing a city name to a certain kind of business.

In the listing above, name of cities appear attached to keywords such as "lawyer" or "bankruptcy": I would certainly not be surprised that these registrants may be either investors or businesses protecting their online area of business.

Tuesday, March 5, 2019

Just noticed these IDN strings but...

Once a month, I track new gTLD registration volumes and decided that IDN would not be part of my reports because I am selfish, lazy and more important: I don't understand IDNs since they are in a language that I can't read. I will probably add these to my report one day when I have enough sponsors for my publications ;-)


I went through the official list of delegated new gTLD and noticed that four IDN strings are already listed in my reports - in their ASCII version - but I never heard about them...because they are IDNs.

An IDN for .WEB or .NETWORK
There is an Arabic version of a string in competition with ".web" or/and ".network" domain names; the شبكة (xn--ngbc5azd) new gTLD has more than 800 domain names created. It was delegated more than five years ago.
Check the list of TLDs in competition with this IDN.

An IDN for .ONLINE
There is a Russian version of a string in competition with ".online" domain names; the онлайн (xn--80asehdb) new gTLD has 3,220 domain names created. It was delegated in 2013 and competes with the same strings from the list above.

An IDN for .SITE
There is a Russian version of a string in competition with ".site" domain names; the сайт (xn--80aswg) new gTLD has 1,160 domain names created. It was one of the first new gTLDs to be delegated in 2013.

An IDN for .GAME(S)
There is a Chinese version of a string in competition with ".game" - ".games" and ".juegos" domain names; the 游戏(xn--unup4y) new gTLD has 160 domain names created. It was also delegated in 2013 and should be added to my list of similar TLDs in the future.

Monday, March 4, 2019

The .AIRPORT new gTLD coming?

This sounds like an official announcement from a website that I just spotted: there will be an applicant for the .AIRPORT new gTLD.

If such a Top-Level Domain for Airports makes sense to me, I remember that we already have the .AERO legacy domain name extension which has existed for "centuries" and I don't remember spotting any domain name ending in ".aero" from my entire life.

Just for the note, the .AERO legacy Top-Level Domain was established on December the 19th 2001, and has 20,000 (more or less) domain names created.

I guess that's the question: why would ".airport" domain names catch the attention of all airports worldwide when the ".aero" legacy generic Top-Level Domain kind of "never saw the day"? Is it because ".aero" is a restricted extension, "reserved exclusively for aviation"? Is it because "aero" is too wide and does not offer the precision required to define an airport? Is is because the backend-registry does not contribute more to promoting the TLD of its client? (Roland, I hope you won't read this).

Check the official announcement on www.dotairport.com. The pitch is rather good and delivers the true message why new gTLDs really make sense today.

(I would personally have used the same second level domain but with a ".domains" as the extension to support the project ;-)

Friday, March 1, 2019

New gTLD reports for February 2019

It is the end of February 2019 and I spent a big part of my day updating these reports "one by one". I suggest to have a closer look at the report on Singular and Plural new gTLDs (and push to reading the list of similar new gTLDs).
  1. New gTLDs related to POLITICS (.gop - .vote - .republican - .democrat - etc...)
  2. New gTLDs related to LUXURY (.rich - .yachts - .chanel - etc...)
  3. New gTLDs related to the MUSIC community (.music - .band - .hiphop - etc...)
  4. Multiple Registries : group of Registries operating five (5) and more domain name extensions
  5. 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)
  6. New gTLDs related to CATERING and CULINARY (.restaurant - .kitchen - .bar - etc...)
  7. New gTLDs related to PHOTOGRAPHY (.photo - .film - .gallery - etc...)
  8. New gTLDs related to CITIES : these are city names only (.paris - .london - .tokyo - etc...)
  9. New gTLDs related to COMPANIES : new domain name extensions that we believe a company should keep its eyes on
  10. New gTLDs related to the LAW and LEGAL matters (.legal - .attorney - .lawyer - etc...)
  11. New gTLDs related to FINANCE (.credit - .capital - .finance - etc...)
  12. New gTLDs related to a COLOR (.orange - .pink - .green - etc...)
  13. New gTLDs related to SPORTS (.hockey - .basketball - .ski - etc...)
  14. New gTLDs related to ALCOHOL (.beer - .wine - .vodka - etc...)
  15. New gTLDs related to REAL ESTATE (.realestate - .realtor - .villas - etc...)
  16. FRENCH new gTLD applications : these are applications submitted by French companies only
  17. New gTLDs related to RELIGION (.catholic - .bible - .church - etc...)
  18. New gTLDs related to CARS (.taxi - .auto - .car - etc...)
  19. New gTLDs related to HEALTH (.health - .doctor - .hospital - etc...)
  20. New gTLDs related to ADULTS.
To be added in these reports, contact me.

Thursday, February 28, 2019

The.Best : three different channels

New owner of the .BEST Registry explains the 3 different channels of the .BEST new gTLD project.


Want to know what the 2 targets are for 2019? Watch the full video or keep a close eye to the  .BEST YouTube channel.

Friday, February 22, 2019

Houston? We lost .STAR

I am sure that the so many groups working to prepare the next round of the ICANN new gTLD program will have come with a solution for the problem after.

Applications' contacts
There are two contacts to list when submitting a new gTLD application:
  1. A primary contact;
  2. A secondary contact.
These two contacts are important; they are the two references for the entire new gTLD application. It can take time for an application to launch and many things can happen between the moment you submit your application to the ICANN and the moment the TLD is "live"; sometimes up to 10 years. In 10 years, it is not rare that the employee of a company changes job (inside or outside of the company). It is what's happened with this registry.

Knock Knock?
I found out about the .STAR new gTLD and contacted the operator:
  1. I fist went to nic.star. This second level domain is reserved to registries and often introduces the TLD. Lucky me, there was a contact page with an email but writing to it, I received an error in return with a "We're writing to let you know that the group you tried to contact (xxx) may not exist, or you may not have permission to post messages to the group..." Strange, this is the email of a group and anyway...there is a problem with the email.
  2. I went to the new gTLD application and checked the primary contact and I found...a Gmail address, so I wrote to it. I doubled checked on LinkedIn and found that the contact - not only uses an email external to the company, but also...he left the company.
  3. I checked the secondary contact and sent the same email. Guess what: this is the answer I received from the server: "Your message wasn't delivered to xxx@xxx.combecause the address couldn't be found, or is unable to receive mail" (note that I changed the email for this publication). This is bad luck because none of the two most important contacts of the application can't be reached by email and the Gmail address could be used by...anyone.
  4. I finally went to the IANA website, which lists all registries and I found an email for the administrative contact to whom I wrote to (I'll come back on this if I receive an answer).
A security hole?
You can have the best tools and the best technique to achieve your goals, but it also happens that security problems are not necessarily technical ones but human ones: who knows if these emails were not used for something else as important as a $185,000.00 new gTLD application? Using an email on which the company has no control for such projects can cause serious security breaches.

New gTLD applications require an update
I already noticed that many applications are not up-to-date. For example, some have changed hands and the contacts are not the same anymore. It also appears that question 18/A ("Describe the mission/purpose of your proposed gTLD") does not reflect the mission of the gTLD anymore.
I believe that the ICANN should ask applicants to check their new gTLD application (and if possible, without asking them to pay for this) - to update question 18/A at least, but ensure that primary and secondary contacts...are the good ones.

Thursday, February 21, 2019

Google uses .LINK domain names

As a long time user of G Suite (the Google platform to operate a company), I follow up with their group entitled "G Suite Visible Changes for customers only". I receive updates about coming upgrades of the Suite. A moderator from the group publishes a URL to point to a Google Doc.

It is the first time that I notice the use of a ".link" domain name and I checked who the moderator is and it is a Google employee so I guess that must be part of a rule to publish information.

Why use a ".link" domain name?
Well, the example says it all and demonstrates exactly why new domain names from the ICANN new gTLD program are useful:
  • they are descriptive of an action, a subject or a content;
  • they mean something.
A link is "a link" and that's precisely what the capture shows below: to go to an information, you should follow this link (please click to enlarge).


Am sure Frank is going to be happy with this :-)

Acquiring a Registry (new gTLDs)

That might sound like an unfamiliar approach but many of the new gTLD industry reads this blog's publications. For this reason...they will probably read the below :-)

Hunting for a Registry
I tend to have that question coming more: "Jean, would you know someone willing to sell his extension?" Some are looking forward to buy an extension. On the other side, some are selling too but the problem with this is that you don't publish about it: you don't write that you want to drop your TLD (probably because you don't want to have to explain the reason for this).

I once contacted some targets: the .BANQUE new gTLD did not even answer my email, neither did the .WED (which appears to be in a bad position).

If I have no interest in these two anymore, this is the message that I want to send: some interested parties are looking forward to buying a Top-Level Domain BEFORE the next round starts, and I receive such questions more and more.

I will sign your NDA
Existing registries and backend registries certainly won't want a publication about a client wanting to get rid of his TLD, for this reason, I will be happy to sign whatever non-disclosure agreement you will want me to sign.

Backend registries, are you reading this?

;-)

Monday, February 18, 2019

The .MONSTER Sunrise Period starts

The Trademark Clearinghouse is starting a new Sunrise Period today and if you are Monster, this is a good day for you: these domain names are for you. The .XYZ new gTLD team acquired the .MONSTER new gTLD and is relaunching it.

When
  • START: Monday, 18 February, 2019 - 16:00;
  • END: Wednesday, 20 March, 2019 - 16:00.

What the outdated application says
Monster Worldwide, Inc., parent company of Monster, the premier global online employment solution for more than a decade, strives to inspire people to improve their lives. Monster is the worldwide leader in successfully connecting people to job opportunities. From the web, to mobile to social, we help companies find people with customized solutions and we use the worldʹs most advanced technology to match the right people to the right job. With a local presence in key markets in North America, Europe, and Asia, Monster works for everyone by connecting employers with quality job seekers at all levels and by providing personalized career advice to consumers globally.
Monster’s focus is on the needs of its customers, both employers and job seekers. Our advanced products and services are intended to improve the seeker experience while also developing deeper relationships with our employer customers. Through innovative products and features, we offer greater value to all job seekers who look to manage their careers, even those seekers who are not actively engaged in a job search. Our product offerings and services are designed to enhance seeker engagement and increase job response rate. We believe that more active seeker engagement will translate directly into higher quality candidates for our employer customers. For employers, our tools and features allow them to more efficiently and effectively attract and find the most relevant candidates for their job openings.
The proposed .monster gTLD is a restricted, single-registrant TLD that would help Monster continue as the global leader in online recruitment by enhancing and expanding Monster Worldwide’s ability to:

  • simplify Internet user navigation to Monster Worldwide products and services;
  • deliver new and innovative products and services;
  • enable marketing campaign activation;
  • facilitate secure interaction and communication with employers and job seekers;
  • improve business operations;
  • demonstrate market leadership in adopting innovative technologies; and
  • meet future client expectations and competitive market demands.
The outdated application can be read here (to be downloaded). It would be nice it the ICANN updated them: many are now outdated.

What the TLD (really) is for
Extracted from the website, this is what ".monster" domain names are for: ".Monster is a domain for creative thinkers, masters of their craft, and modern-day renegades. Customers choose .Monster domains for their scary good ideas".

Check the Trademark Clearinghouse calendar for more.

Saturday, February 16, 2019

UPDATED: Jovenet Consulting: The Group

I am launching "another" publication platform for users to follow the new gTLD News. This time, I will add publications to a Google Group.

What:
This group lists publications related to new generic Top-Level Domains (new gTLDs). Questions on new gTLD projects, dotBrand, community or geographic TLDs are welcome. This group is about sharing and learning about Registries and next rounds of the ICANN new gTLD program.

Where:
Where to read all publications:
  1. Here: https://www.jovenet.consulting/news/group and it's better if you use Chrome (since Internet Explorer bugs the page), or;
  2. Here: https://groups.google.com/a/jovenet.consulting/d/forum/post (the URL is ugly but unfortunately, Google Groups does not (yet) allow to map a domain name to it.
To post, send an email:
To post your publication(s), you should send an email to post@jovenet.consulting (content is moderated):
  1. Object of the email is your Title
  2. Content of the email is the Content to be published.
Why:
I believe that the ICANN is not as good as it could to promote new gTLDs and registries lack sales people or ambassadors to promote their string's identity. Talking to ICANN insiders only is not enough.
Also multiplying places where content can be accessed benefits to all: potential interested parties, new gTLDs, registries, potential applicants and sponsors (that is right, you can sponsor these platforms and increase your visibility).

And:
For the moment, content posted should be the same as the one posted to the new gTLD LinkedIn group (2,700 subscribers) but the idea is to migrate to a platform owned by Jovenet Consulting. I am confident that Google will allow G Suite users to personalize the URL of their groups in the future.

Friday, February 15, 2019

Before you submit your new gTLD application...

...don't forget to tread this :-)

.YELLOWPAGES new gTLD
This is the expert determination legal rights objection dated July 25, 2013:
...having reviewed the eight non-exclusive consideration factors set forth in the Applicant Guidebook section 3.2.5, the Panel finds that the Objector has failed to establish, as it alleges, that the potential use of the Applied-for gTLD by the applicant …unjustifiably impairs the distinctive character or the reputation of the objector’s mark… or creates an impermissible likelihood of confusion between the applied for gTLD and the Objector’s mark.” The Panel also finds no indications that such use takes unfair advantage of the distinctive character or the reputation of the objector’s registered or unregistered trademark or service mark.
In simple words
There was one applicant for the .YELLOWPAGEs new gTLD and an objector:
  1. The Objector’s mark is “YELLOW PAGES” (the “Objector’s Mark” or the “YELLOW PAGES Mark”);
  2. The Applicant (for the ".yellowpages" new gTLD) is internationally renowned as Australia’s leading telecommunications and information services company.
In this proceeding, the Objector has made a Legal Rights Objection (LRO) which refers to an objection that the string comprising the Applied-for gTLD infringes the existing legal rights of others that are recognized and enforceable under generally accepted and internationally recognized principles of law.

The Objector cited the Procedure, Article 8 and the Applicant Guidebook Section 3.5.2 (ii) and (iii) as the bases for the LRO. The Objector acknowledged that the Applicant may be the genuine proprietor of YELLOW PAGES in Australia. However, given this territorial limitation and the number of other genuine YELLOW PAGES directory providers internationally who are not connected with the Applicant, the Objector objected to an application to secure monopoly rights in the Applied-for gTLD.

The Applicant argued that the Objector made three basic points:
  1. the Objector (or a third party) holds territorial rights in the name “YELLOW PAGES”;
  2. in some jurisdictions the name “YELLOW PAGES” is generic;
  3. the name “YELLOW PAGES” is identical to the Applied-for gTLD.
The Applicant countered the arguments made by the Objector under sections 3.5.2(ii) and (iii) of the Applicant Guidebook. The Panel reviewed each of the consideration factors discussed and concluded that the nature of the gTLD regime that those applicants who were granted gTLDs would have first level power extending throughout the Internet and across jurisdictions. The prospect of coincidence of brand names and a likelihood of confusion exists.

Conclusion
There are several Yellow Pages websites around the world in numerous countries, but one of them, whatever the kid of protection it had, could not secure the only available domain name extension.

"First-level power"
Whatever the kind of extension it is: a .BRAND, a generic, a community or a geographic one, one chair is available only. This title defines exactly what a new gTLD can be: a possibility to grab a generic term, a keyword, and sit on top of a pyramid to watch competition look up at you. I like to use the work "Monopoly" for new gTLDs: isn't it what they are?

Read the full LRO here and learn why the objection was rejected.

Thursday, February 14, 2019

Action required: 5 year Proof Of Use re-validation

The Proof Of Use documents (signed declaration and sample) of the TMCH trademark records must be re-validated every 5 years. In case your documents are (almost) older than 5 years, you are required to re-verify the validity and actuality of the uploaded sample and declaration of use.

To do so, a POU revalidation page has been launched on the TMCH web interface. This page is accessible when logged in to your account, via the right hand side of the page in the Mark overview tab or Mark details page.


The possibility to re-validate your POU will only be available in case you have POU documents that are almost 5 years or older.

For further details on the different steps to re-validate your POU documents, please refer to the one pager below or the full manual.

In case you have any further questions related to the revalidation of the POU, feel free to contact the Trademark Clearinghouse directly via their hotline or via their support page.

Download the documentation

Friday, February 8, 2019

Interesting use of the .WEBER new gTLD

Many dotBrand new gTLD applicants still don't know what to do with their personalized domain name extension. I am confident that a lot of service providers have plenty of ideas on how to use such domain names but some Trademarks are starting to demonstrate interesting uses of their TLD.

Languages, not countries
I find it funny to browse on a website to find country flags pointing to language pages. When thinking twice, is this really what the web is made for and don't we already use country code Top-Level Domains for this: shouldn't a ccTLD qualify to point to the website of a company FOR its country of residence and not the language in which its content is offered?

Today, many websites use the flag of a country to point to a language but then, why use an American flag when you could use a British one to point to an English written content? The same applies to all other most spoken languages in the world: Spanish is spoken in Mexico for example, and French is spoken in Canada.

The Weber use of their .BRAND new gTLD
I went to Google and hit "site:.weber" (without quotations) in the search field and I found the list of ".weber" domain names using two letter country codes as their second level domain:
  • www.es.weber
  • www.fr.weber
  • www.ru.weber
  • www.bg.weber
  • www.hu.weber
  • www.de.weber
  • etc...
When checking each page, there is no sign of a flag or a country name, so my understanding of this strategy is that each content is dedicated to...a language and not a country of residence (but UK maybe and its www.uk.weber). I found no www.us.weber (USA) nor a www.ca.weber (Canada).

For the note, there are official codes for countries, but there are 3 letter codes for languages too. For content dedicated to languages, I would rather have chosen 3 letter codes.

DotBrand new gTLDs offer new opportunities
Country codes Top-Level Domains (two letter domain name extensions) and sub-domains (the "www" in a domain name  for example) already offered plenty of opportunities but a .BRAND new gTLD offers something that all other domain name strategies do not offer:
  • Availability: all domain names are available in a .BRAND new gTLD;
  • Innovation: using official 3 letter second level domain names could be the next trend to qualify a content in a specific language.

Register your Trademark using an agent.