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Username: dtobias
Date/Time: Wed, August 15, 2001 at 6:14 PM GMT
Browser: Netscape Communicator V5.0 using Windows dows
Subject: What's up with the other five new TLDs???`


I haven't heard any news lately about any of the other new TLDs besides .biz and .info.  Supposedly, the agreement for .name is signed and awaiting U.S. Department of Commmerce approval, but nothing more has been forthcoming in the last few weeks about the timetable for its launch.  The remaining TLDs, .pro, .coop, .aero, and .museum, seem to be in a holding pattern, with no news emerging either from their registries or ICANN.

Are they holding back on purpose because of all the trouble the first two new TLDs are causing?

Ironically, I suspect that the other five new TLDs will actually manage to get launched with considerably less hassle and unfairness compared to the first two (and maybe they should have *started* with the smaller ones instead of the larger ones as they did).

.aero, .coop, and .museum are aimed at very limited constituencies, and are being run by nonprofit groups which are trade associations for that specialty.  Hence, they will most likely scrutinize all applications carefully by hand and weed out bogus ones or ones that blatantly violate a trademark, so the names will actually go to the group that's supposed to get them and not be hoarded, speculated in, or sued over.  Not that this will prove all that useful, given the small community that even cares about these limited categories, but at least there may be a painless launch.  And I've heard that .aero plans on having a structured namespace for such things as airport arrival and departure info -- like -- if this is actually done in a consistent way, it may really be useful.
.pro is also limited, but with a larger constituency -- the success of its launch will depend on the registry's ability to weed out registration fraud -- hopefully, professional credentials will be checked more reliably than the trademark registrations for the .info sunrise!

.name is aimed at individuals, not corporations, so one can hope it will be left alone to be used for personal space and not as an object of speculation and litigation -- the "defensive registrations" for trademark owners are troublesome and really should have no place in a personal namespace, but I've read the rules thoroughly and find that the "wall of defense" is actually quite porous -- you can win a challenge if your personal name really does fall within the protected space.  So this one may actually work out.

All of this, however, is subject to ICANN's well-known ability to screw anything up -- my big fear is that they impose, even on the very limited TLDs like .aero, some cumbersome, bureaucratic, and unfair sunrise procedure that gives trademark owners, including ones not remotely in fields related to that which the TLD is limited to, some sort of pre-emptive right to take names out of the usable space despite the existence of other meanings of the name.  If this comes to pass, there could be consequences as idiotic as some airports not being able to get their three letter abbreviations in .aero because some completely unrelated company happens to have a trademark on that sequence of three letters.

Link: Dan's Domain Site: New TLDs

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