Donuts has acquired the new gTLD .irish, which is struggling to gain volume after about 18 months on the market.
The gTLD was applied for and operated by Dot-Irish LLC, a US company founded by Irish and Northern Irish entrepreneurs.
Since going to general availability in June last year, it managed to grow its zone file to a peak of about 2,300 names in the first year.
That’s since dropped off to about 2,000 names.
Even self-consciously Irish registrar Blacknight has only managed to shift fewer than 500 names.
These numbers are disappointing any way you look at them, with the original gTLD application talking about an addressable market of 6 million Irish citizens and 80 million more in the Irish diaspora.
Registrar support does not seem to have been the issue. Registrars with reach, including Tucows, Name.com, Host Europe Group and Go Daddy all sell the names.
Pricing may be a factor. While Blacknight promotes .irish prominently for about $10 a year, elsewhere prices can range from $40 to $50.
The terms of the acquisition, which Donuts said closed last month, have not been disclosed.
Donuts said it will migrate .irish to its own infrastructure March 1, 2017. All policies and protection mechanisms that apply to the rest of the 198-strong Donuts stables will be applied to .irish, the company said.
The US elections last month seem to be responsible for almost all of Verisign’s “top trending keywords” for November.
Donald Trump topped the company’s monthly list of fastest-growing strings in both .com and .net registries.
The four words of his idiotic campaign slogan “Make America great again” also appear individually in the .com top ten.
The votes to legalize medical and recreational marijuana use in several US states also seems to have inspired speculation in “pot”, “weed” and “cannabis” names, though more noticeably in .net.
In fact, the only string in the .com list not related to the US polls appears to be “near” (at least, I cannot find a connection).
The Verisign report includes words that achieve a certain level of growth month-to-month, factoring out strings that are commonly registered every month.
Here are the November lists.
Italian ccTLD .it has topped three million domains for the first time, according to registry Registro.it.
The milestone name was abbigliamentoludica.it, seemingly a clothes shop. It appears to have been registered November 25.
The registry announced the news in English last week.
It appears that growth is slowing somewhat over the long term. The ccTLD hit one million in 2005 and two million in 2010, but it’s taken six years to get to the next big landmark.
.it seems to have started the year with 2,869,010 domains under management, according to its stats page.
It currently has 3,002,135 domains under management, according to the web site.
.CLUB Domains will today release 9,200 previously reserved .club names into the channel at premium prices.
The registry is also offering free T-shirts to the first 500 people to purchase a premium name for $59.99 and more, personalized with said name.
While the names will become available at 1500 UTC today, the full list is not expected to be published until midnight UTC at landrush.club
CMO Jeff Sass gave the following list of examples of names to be released: watches.club, vino.club, ocean.club, elite.club, driving.club, comicbook.club, Chinese.club and gambling.club.
A thousand of the names are three-character strings.
The first-year prices are suggest at between $100 and $10,000 at the retail level, Sass said.
All premium names renew at standard-name pricing, he said.
The T-shirt offer requires the user to tweet using promotional hashtags and expires December 31.
Domain registry Radix has shamelessly jumped on the “mannequin challenge” meme bandwagon, with the release of video plugging its forthcoming .fun gTLD.
It’s quite slickly produced, on the face of it shot in a single unbroken take (though I suspect there are a few edits hidden in the motion blur), but the real fun for me, as someone who’s obviously been working alone from his mother’s basement for the last decade, is having a nosey around the office of a modern tech company.
Radix, it seems, names its meeting rooms after Harry Potter characters and festoons its walls with inspirational quotes from self-help books.
There are a few visual gags too. One employee has hit the bottom of a bottle of Jack Daniels, presumably celebrating the wish-fulfilling sales figures we see on another’s monitor.
Another seems to be trying to offload a stack of banned Rs 500 and Rs 1000 notes on a colleague. Topical satire, kids!
Did you spot anything else amusing?
NB: If you’re wondering why a respectable company would produce a video backed with profane, sexist and sexually explicit lyrics, a young person I know assures me that using Rae Sremmurd’s chart-topper “Black Beatles” as the soundtrack is a standard component of the mannequin challenge meme.
UPDATE: Seems Key-Systems has done one too.