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ICANNWiki boss applies for 10 gTLDs

A new company run by ICANNWiki founder Raymond King and business partner Peter Brual has applied to ICANN for 10 new generic top level domains.

Top Level Design has applied for: .blog, .llc, .group, .wiki, .gay, .art, .style, .design, .ink, and .photography.

The company is entering contention sets on most of those, but I believe it’s the first .wiki bid announced to date.

It’s also the only portfolio player so far to announce that it’s using CentralNIC, best known for pseudo-gTLDs such as uk.com, as its back-end registry provider.

The company said the venture “will not interfere with the presentation or neutrality of ICANNWiki.com”.

Paul Goldstone puts co.com up for sale

Kevin Murphy, March 8, 2012, Domain Sales

The domain name co.com has been put up for sale by domain investor Paul Goldstone.

The domain, which received 4.5 million unique visitors and 14 million page views in 2011, will be brokered jointly by DomainAdvisors and SellDomains.com, according to a press release.

I can immediately think of two companies that should be interested.

It might be a very smart move for .CO Internet, the .co registry, to buy the name and wildcard the third level in order to capture .co typo traffic.

It’s also exactly the kind of address CentralNic – which sells third-level names under domains such as us.org and uk.com – likes to use as a pseudo-gTLD.

If these two and others get into a bidding war, Goldstone could wind up making a packet.

DomainAdvisors CEO Tessa Holcomb said she expects the domain to fetch a “multi seven-figure” price.

CentralNic working with .mls new gTLD bidder

Kevin Murphy, February 20, 2012, Domain Registries

MLS Domains has contracted with CentralNic to provide the back-end registry for its .mls new top-level domain application, which it expects to be contested.

MLS in this context stands for Multiple Listing Service, a form of real estate listing aggregation service common in the US.

MLS Domains is already selling .mls preregistrations, at $800 a pop, to qualifying MLS companies, which will partially fund its application.

Company president Bob Bemis said in a press release that CentralNic was selected due to its experience with “novel TLDs”:

we expect no more than two or three thousand second-level domains ever to be registered on .MLS, so we need a registry partner who can provide a high level of service for a relatively small market of customers.

CentralNic sells sub-domains in alternative suffixes such as uk.com, gb.com and us.org. It manages these domains as if they were regular gTLDs, offering a Whois service, UDRP, etc.

The registry will also provide an integrated, affiliated registrar for the .mls project, MLS Domains said.

That’s if the company’s application is successful, of course.

.mls is expected to be contested by the Chinese owner of mls.com – Nanning Billin Network Ltd has applied for a US trademark on the gTLD.

Third-level casino.uk.com sells for $4,000

Kevin Murphy, November 14, 2011, Domain Sales

The third-level domain name casino.uk.com has been sold via Sedo for $4,000.

The uk.com namespace is not an official public domain extension – uk.com is one of several regular .com domains managed as alternative TLDs by CentralNic.

While .uk.com domains do occasionally pop up in search engine results, and are even used by brands such as Avon, it’s unusual to see one sell on the aftermarket.

The only other notable sale in the DI database of over 60,000 publicly reported transactions is restaurants.uk.com, which was bought for $1,650 last year.

Casino.com was one of the most expensive domains of all time, fetching $5.5 million in 2003.

Paris.hilton? CentralNic pitches gTLDs at super-rich

Kevin Murphy, October 18, 2011, Domain Registries

Just when you thought you’d seen everything, CentralNic is angling for the wallets of the “ultra-wealthy” with its new pitch for .familyname top-level domains.

The alternative TLD registry today launched dotFamilyName, a companion to its dotBrandSolutions site designed to give “prominent families” an “online legacy” in the form of a new gTLD.

Think .hilton, .kennedy, .rockefeller.

If own a squadron of private jets, if you’re a card-carrying member of the Illuminati, if you have your own parking spot outside the Bilderberg Club, then CentralNic wants to hear from you.

The company is basically proposing to apply to ICANN for and manage a .familyname gTLD on behalf of the more-money-than-taste crowd for a start-up fee of about $500,000.

Here’s the pitch from the press release:

Your dotFamilyName TLD can be used in a variety of ways:

1) To create a network of private family websites – a discreet, centralized destination for use by family members containing classified content and images.

2) To create an authenticated source of family information for public consumption.

3) To establish a legacy for generations to come, ensuring that the bond between generations will be kept alive.

4) To ensure that you remain amongst a privileged few in owning a personalized TLD on the World Wide Web.

5) To maintain control over your official web presence, acting as a state of the art security system for your personal reputation.

6) To ensure that, among the families sharing your name, your family controls it.

A commenter on one of my articles for The Register recently joked that new gTLDs could create confusion between hilton.paris, the hotel, and paris.hilton, the heiress.

But it’s not April 1, so I guess this is for real.

ICANN has a ban on individuals applying for new gTLDs, but there’s no particular prohibition on personal-use extensions, as long as they have a corporate entity behind them.

Could it work?