The Iran-based treaty organization ECO, the Economic Cooperative Organization, has registered its displeasure with ICANN that several companies have applied for .eco as a gTLD.
ECO is a multinational IGO focused on development formed by Iran, Pakistan and Turkey in 1985. It has seven other Asian and Eurasian member states.
In a letter to ICANN brass this week, the organization said it “expresses its disapproval and non-endorsement to all the applications for .ECO gTLD and requests the ICANN and the new gTLD application evaluators to not approve these applications.”
.eco has been proposed as a gTLD for environmental causes by four companies. It was one of the first new gTLD ideas to emerge, several years ago, and was once backed by Al Gore.
Under changes to the application rules currently under development at ICANN, ECO may enjoy a second-level ban on the string “eco”, possibly only temporarily, under all new gTLDs.
The criteria for this IGO name protection is expected to be based on the criteria for registering a .int domain name, which are reserved for certain categories of international treaty organizations.
Unless ICANN really pulls the rug out from under applicants, the protection would not extend to the top-level in the current application round, however.
ECO notes in its letter that as it qualifies for a .int, it should be protected.
However, eco.int is not registered and ECO uses a .org domain for its web site, begging the question of how seriously it takes its domain name brand protection strategy.
Read ECO’s letter here.