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EURid appoints new CEO

Kevin Murphy, March 18, 2022, Domain Registries

EURid has named its new CEO, or general manager, as Peter Janssen.

Janssen is currently technical manager at the registry, where he’s been since .eu went live over 15 years ago.

He’ll replace longstanding boss Marc Van Wesemael, who’s retiring.

Janssen previously worked for DNS Belgium, also as technical manager.

Greek .eu domains to be deleted

Kevin Murphy, February 15, 2022, Domain Registries

EURid has started warning registrants that their Greek-script .eu domains will be deleted this year.

The names will no longer work after November 14, the company said yesterday.

It’s part of the registry’s three-year plan to phase out mixed-script internationalized domain names, which are considered poor security practice.

The affected domains are Greek-script IDN.eu names, not IDN.IDN names using the Greek-script .ευ.

.ευ was introduced in 2019, after an amusingly Kafkaesque, yet typically ICANN, decade-long effort to crowbar the ccTLD through its IDN Fast Track rules.

Because EURid had been accepting Greek-script second-level names under its base Latin .eu domain for some time, it grandfathered existing registrants by “cloning” their .eu names into .ευ, albeit with only a three-year lifespan.

There were only 2,694 .ευ domains registered at the end of 2021, so one must assume that the number of domains on the deleting list must be smaller.

.eu grows in Q4 after silly growth in Portugal

Kevin Murphy, February 3, 2022, Domain Registries

The .eu ccTLD ended a lumpy 2021 with more domains than at the start, according to the registry’s latest quarterly report.

.eu ended December with 3,713,804 .eu, .ею and .ευ domains under management, up from 3,705,728 at the end of September and 3 684 984 at the end of 2020, according to EURid.

The growth was driven by a ludicrous 23.4% increase in the number of registrations coming from Portugal — .eu domains registered there increased by 30,553 during the quarter, 55,388 during the year, ending the year at 161,283 names.

Portugal had fewer than 50,000 .eu names at the end of 2019. It is believe the Portuguese surge has been driven by registrar pricing promotions and one wonders how sustainable the growth is.

Elsewhere, the number of regs coming from the UK — which is no longer eligible for .eu names due to Brexit — were 3,751, up from 3,714 in September.

The number of domains registered to EU citizens not resident in the EU was 19,591, up from 16,676 at the end of Q3.

Over 6,000 Brexit domains snapped up after mass delete

Kevin Murphy, January 21, 2022, Domain Registries

EURid saw about 6,000 .eu domain names that formerly belonged to Brits re-registered in the first day after a mass delete at the start of the month.

“Around 6000 Brexit-related domain names were re-registered during the first day, and around 6500 as of today,” a registry spokesperson said.

EURid had released around 48,000 domains in batches on January 3, so the portion of domains considered valuable enough to snap up was about 13.5%.

The domains had belonged to UK citizens who no longer qualify for .eu after Brexit came into effect a year ago.

Registrants had been given many chances to retain their names by transferring them to an entity in the remaining EU and EEA states, or to an EU/EEA citizen residing in the UK.

There were almost 300,000 .eu domains registered in the UK at the time of the Brexit referendum in 2016.

EURid’s CEO is retiring

Kevin Murphy, December 9, 2021, Domain Registries

EURid’s long-serving CEO is leaving and the company has started looking for someone to fill the role.

A spokesperson for the .eu registry told DI this morning that Marc Van Wesemael is planning to retire after his replacement is found, which should be a matter of months.

Van Wesemael has been CEO (general manager) of the Belgium-based company since its foundation and since it was first awarded the contract to run .eu way back in 2005.

EURid announced without sentiment or fanfare this week that candidates should apply via an agency on this LinkedIn page.

Given the nature of the role as an EU government contractor, the company is looking for somebody familiar with the workings of the European Commission.

Van Wesemael’s departure announcement comes just a few months after EURid was re-awarded the contract to run .eu and its Greek and Cyrillic variants for another five years, giving his successor some breathing room.

EURid to drop 48,000 Brexit domains in one day

Kevin Murphy, November 23, 2021, Domain Registries

All the .eu domain names formerly belonging to Brits and UK residents will be released for registration on a first-come, first-served basis in one day, EURid announced today.

There are about 48,000 of them, and they’ll be released in batches starting at 0900 UTC on January 3, two days later than the previously announced date, the registry said.

The names all belonged to UK registrants that lost their eligibility when the country left the EU in January last year.

There were almost 300,000 .eu domains registered in the UK at the time of the Brexit referendum in 2016. Most have since dropped or been transferred to EU-based entities or EU citizens that still qualify.

Almost 300,000 UK .eu regs disappeared because of Brexit

Kevin Murphy, November 3, 2021, Domain Registries

UK-registered .eu domains dropped by about 43,000 in the third quarter, as the full impact of Brexit kicked in.

There were 3,714 domains registered from the UK at the end of the third quarter, according to EURid’s latest statistics.

This compares to 46,523 at the end of the second quarter, 150,024 a month before Brexit at the end of 2019, and 294,436 at the end of the second quarter 2016, just before the Brexit referendum.

UK-based residents that hold EU or EEA citizenship can still own .eu domains, and these are counted as a subset of the 16,676 “Eligibility based on citizenship” domains EURid started reporting this year.

Other .eu names previously owned in the UK will have been transferred to EU-based entities.

EURid said that at the end of September it had 3,705,728 .eu, .ею and .ευ domains in total, down quarterly from 3,731,298 and up from 3,576,302 a year earlier.

The total is still substantially down on the pre-Brexit quarterly peak of 3,907,406, at the end of 2014.

The fastest-growing territory was Latvia, at 6.8%, but that’s from a pretty low base and not really enough to counterbalance the UK losses.

The UK-registered names were given Withdrawn status at the end of June and the former registrants have until the end of the year to request reinstatement directly from EURid, before the names are batch-released back into the available pool.

EURid fends off rivals for .eu contract

Kevin Murphy, October 19, 2021, Domain Registries

EURid has been renewed as the European Union’s ccTLD operator for another five years.

The organization announced yesterday that the European Commission has asked it to continue to run .eu and associated internationalized domain names until October 2027.

EURid beat off competition from three competitors — the Estonian ccTLD registry and two Luxembourg non-profits that appeared to have been formed just to bid on the contract.

EURid has been running .eu since its inception in 2005.

Three rivals challenge EURid for .eu contract

Three organizations have emerged to rival EURid for the right to operate the .eu ccTLD.

The European Commission has published the list of four eligible applicants — which by law must be non-profits — for the .eu registry contract.

One of them is of course EURid, which has been running the TLD for over 15 years and could presumably be considered the favorite.

Another is the Estonian Internet Foundation, which already runs the .ee ccTLD for that country.

The other two appear to be unknown quantities, both formed in Luxembourg in December presumably solely to participate in the .eu tender.

One is known at The Open Registry or TORA. The other is called European Network Information Center or EU NIC.

The Commission has not published the bids, so little is known about these two entities.

The Commission will make its decision on the winner in 80 days.

The original request for proposals was delayed earlier this year after the Commission appeared to forget about Brexit.

EURid scraps residency rules for three countries

.eu registry EURid said today that it’s broadening the eligibility criteria for registrants to ex-pats from three countries.

The rule change means that if you’re a citizen of Norway, Iceland or Liechtenstein but do not live in those countries or in the EU, you’ll be able to register domains regardless of residency.

Those three countries are in the European Economic Area but not the EU. EEA residents have been able to register .eu names for a long time, but non-resident citizens were barred.

The rule applying eligibility to citizenship rather than residency has been available to full-fat EU citizens since 2019.

The number of affected people appears to be low. The combined population of all three countries is under six million, almost all of whom are Norwegian, and Norway is believed to have 100,000 citizens living overseas.