.kerala – A new top-level domain!

The proposed name extension .kerala is the independent top-level domain registry of Keralites on the Internet. The local addresses available with this domain ending are concise and create a superbrand identity for their citizens, companies and institutions alike.

When the new gTLDs is accepted for Kerala, the new domain name (.kerala) will be the most prestigious one for everybody, with un-imaginable fortune, glory, self-respect and progress in their respective sphere of activities.

The Government of Kerala can play a major role in adopting and operating the new ‘.kerala’ domain in multiple facets. In the State of Kerala, there are 14 districts and 16 cities. Each District and each city has its own significance. The Government can become a live partner in adopting and promoting the domain name .kerala.

It will add honour and prestige to the Government of Kerala, as well as the large number of business, educational institutions and various other establishments. The private sector will also derive greater and unprecedented advantages, business prospects and profits when they start making the new super brand of .kerala’.

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The ICANN

The Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) was formed in 1998. It is an internationally organized, non-profit multi-stakeholder corporation dedicated to keeping the Internet secure, stable and interoperable. It promotes competition and develops policy on the Internet’s unique identifiers. The new gTLD program is designed to be self-funding. It is possible ICANN will over-collect or even under-collect for this first round of applications. If the fee collection exceeds ICANN’s expenses, the community will be consulted as to how that excess should be used.

ICANN has responsibility for Internet Protocol (IP) address space allocation, protocol identifier assignment, generic (gTLD) and country code (ccTLD) Top-Level Domain name system management, and root server system management functions. The DNS translates the domain name you type into the corresponding IP address, and connects you to your desired website. The DNS also enables email to function properly, so the email you send will reach the intended recipient.

ICANN is dedicated to preserving the operational stability of the Internet; to promoting competition; to achieving broad representation of global Internet communities; and to developing policy appropriate to its mission through bottom-up, consensus-based processes. ICANN doesn’t control content on the Internet. It cannot stop spam and it doesn’t deal with access to the Internet. But through its coordination role of the Internet’s naming system, it does have an important impact on the expansion and evolution of the Internet. Visit the ICANN

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Why get a .Brand?

Brand owners are usally caring quite well for their brands. Lots of money goes into all areas that can strengthen the brand. Great designs, messaging, trademark protection etc. When it comes to  domain names, brand owners take care to register their brand names on most top level domains, generic top level domains (gTLD) and country code domains (ccTLD). A global brand will usuallay use .COM as the main web site, and create country specific, or language specific web sites that the ccTLDs they wanted, or sometimes not even their  .COM address.

Consumer facing brands are experiencing issues with domain names pretending to be a legitimate brand reseller or even pretend to be the brand owner. Consumers are lured into fake online shops, with the sad effect that the brand itself is weakened. The same issues are also hitting B2B brands, but not to the same extent.

From January 12 to April 12 next year, it is possible to register a generic top level domain for your brand. This opens up many possibilities for brand owners. We will see many ways to use these new top level names, with web sites having domains like: www.yourbrand, product.yourbrand, support.yourbrand, investor.yourbrand etc. And email addresses like: peter.sellers@yourbrand.

The entry cost for applying to get a gTLD is US$185 000, which is set by the authority who governs the names and numbers for the Internet, ICANN. That comes in addition to costs for writing the application, technical solution/service to operate the name and maintaining the other responsibilities as set by ICANN. Prepare for a total one time fees in the range of US$250 000 – $400 000, and annual running fees in the US$50 000 – $150 000 range.

To justify the fairly high cost, there must be significant benefits. Here are some of the benefits that I see for brand owners who own a .brand:

  • Stronger brand recognition. Customers and partners will see your brand as stronger, when being exposed with a .brand email or web site. Small weaker brands will not have the opportunity to own a .brand, either for financial reasons, or for trademark reasons.
  • Improved security. Phishing problems will not be an issue for .brands, as they have full control of their own top level domain.
  • Search engines and browsers. I believe search engines like Google, Bing, Yahoo and others, in the future will do a lookup to see if the single word searched for is a gTLD with a web behind it. With gTLDs, its possible to have a one word web address, like http://yourbrand. So when typing your brand name in the browser, the user will be sent straight to your brands global web site. This feature can be controlled by both web browsers and the search engines.
  • Brand protection. ICANN‘s enforced measures to protect brands, will include all new top level domains. Example: A porn company tries to register versace.porn. If Versace is a gTLD.versace, the porn company cannot register the domain versace.porn or versace.anything.
  • Short URLs. By deleting .com behind your brand, you have the potential for shorter better-looking URLs for product pages, marketing campaigns etc. Shorter e-mail addresses are also a possibility.
  • Is .brand a global trademark? Well, I believe it is. In my limited knowledge about the trademark possibilities of this world, I don’t know anything else that you can do to a brand name that gives you a stronger global trademark. The future is all digital. Your digital content must be connected to your digital brand name. A .brand just makes sense for the future of any strong brand.

There are also the costs to consider if you don’t go for your own .brand. That is, costs related to fighting off competitors who wish to use the same or similar name as your brand name. Spending money on lawyers, and following up with disputes could end up costing you the same.

If you have a strong and valuable brand, then my suggestion is that you hurry up and start the process to make it a .brand

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2012 Will See One of the Biggest Changes in the History of the Internet. Are You Ready?

In January 2012, companies, organisations, causes, start-ups and even cities will be able to apply for their own web domain. This represents a fundamental change to the way we use the Internet and many feel this will offer new global branding and marketing opportunities.

Join the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN), overseers of the new domain application and approval process, for an informative and thought-provoking discussion on all aspects of the new Generic Top Level Domain (gTLD) program.

For more information on ICANN’s new gTLD program, please visit

 

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Learn about the potential of New gTLDs

Today’s online world is defined by 22 different generic top-level domains (gTLDs), including .com and .net, and approximately 250 country code TLDs (ccTLDs) such as .de and .jp.

That is about to change. In the coming year, it is anticipated that organizations will be able to propose and apply for gTLDs associated with particular interests or business sectors. These domain names may help organizations enhance branding, revenue, security, and user interaction.

The application process is expected to be thorough and exacting, and applicants must demonstrate a long-term ability to enforce policy for and administer their domain, as well as operate a secure and robust registry infrastructure.

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