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.vu to relaunch under mystery new registry

Kevin Murphy, March 17, 2019, 17:41:41 (UTC), Domain Registries

Vanuatu is to attempt to broaden the appeal of its .vu domain globally by switching to a new shared registry system.

The changes were initiated last week in Kobe, when the ICANN board of directors gave the final stamp of approval on the redelegation of the ccTLD.

.vu is now delegated to country’s Telecommunications Radiocommunications and Broadcasting Regulator (TRBR), having been managed since 1995 by Telecom Vanuatu Limited (TVL). The government passed a law in 2016 calling for the redelegation.

Under its new management, the market for .vu domains will be opened up at the registrar level. To date, TVL has operated as a sole source for .vu domains. From now on, it will just be one registrar among (presumably) many.

A registry back-end has already been selected, after tenders were received from nine companies, but it’s still in contract talks and TRBR is not ready to name the successful party just yet.

The Vanuatu government wants to encourage local ISPs and web developers to consider signing up as registrars or resellers, but the SRS will also be open to established international players.

Brand protection registrars and TLD completionists will no doubt begin to carry .vu directly as soon as they’re able to plug in to the new system.

But off the top of my head, I’m struggling to think of a strong global sales pitch for the string, other than a phonetic similarity to “view”.

It doesn’t stand for much as an acronym, doesn’t seem to work well in English as a domain hack, and doesn’t seem to mean much in other widely spoken languages (other than French, where it means “seen”, as in “déjà-vu”).

We can only hope the new management doesn’t attempt to market it with some kind of pathetic backronym.

Domains in .vu currently cost $50 (USD) per year when bought from TVL. I have no current data on how many .vu domains are registered.

InternetNZ’s Keith Davidson assisted in the redelegation and is handling comms during the handover.

Vanuatu is a Pacific archipelago nation, previously known as the New Hebrides, that gained independence from the UK and France in 1980. It had roughly 272,000 inhabitants at the last count.

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Comments (2)

  1. Dave Tyrer says:

    I think video names like Movie.vu, TV.vu and Tube.vu work well.

    The best acronym I can dream up for a campaign is “Virtually Unlimited”.

    If the dot GDN registry (which seems to stand for “Global Domain Name”) can get hundreds of thousands of registrations, then dot VU could possibly get some momentum.

    (However, I did happen to notice that ALP Names is by far the biggest registrar for dot GDN and they have suddenly declined in number by countless thousands in the last couple of days.)

    DomainIncite seems to be becoming an important source of brandable brand possibilities like “completionists” and “backronym”. Please keep them coming Kevin 🙂

  2. Rubens Kuhl says:

    Once upon a time, there were “VU Meters” used in audio, where VU stands for “Volume Unit”.

    They were symbolic in the analog audio era, so Napster.vu could have been a thing.

Leave a Reply to Dave Tyrer