ICANN has approved a new country-code top-level domain for the nation of Kazakhstan.
The new .қаз, which is “kaz” is Cyrillic, will be delegated to the “Association of IT companies of Kazakhstan”, according to a resolution passed by ICANN’s board of directors this week.
But did this move just cause problems for a new gTLD applicant?
One cultural/geographic gTLD that was proposed back in 2009 is .kab, for the Kabylia region of Algeria and the Kabyle language and people.
It’s easy to see how kab/KAB and .қаз could be considered confusing during a string similarity review, though ICANN’s laughable Sword tool only gives them a visual similarity score of 49%.
The .kab application currently has a dead web site, so it’s quite possibly one of the many new gTLD projects that fizzled out during ICANN’s repeated delays launching the program.