.koeln

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Status: Delegated
country: Cologne (Köln), Germany
Manager: NetCologne Gesellschaft für Telekommunikation mbH
Registry Provider: KNIPP
Registry: dotKoeln GmbH
Registry Backend: RyCE GmbH
Date Implemented: 05 March 2014
Type: GeoTLD
Priority #: 126
nTLDStats
Registrations: 24,492
Parked Domains: 12,728
Parked Domain %: 51.97 %
Important Dates
Delegation: 05 March 2014
General Availability: 05 September 2014

More Information: NTLDStatsLogo.png

.koeln is a delegated geographical TLD in ICANN's New gTLD Program. The applicant is the NetCologne Gesellschaft für Telekommunikation mbH.[1] The proposed application succeeded and was delegated to the Root Zone on 5 March 2014.[2]

Application Excerpts

The following is excerpted from the applicant's response to question # 18:

"The mission of the proposed gTLD is two-fold. First and foremost, the new gTLD is aimed to benefit Cologne’s companies, communities and residents as well as the city itself. Secondly, based on how the business model is set out, the introduction of the gTLD is also supposed to supplement NetCologne GmbH’s (in the following “NetCologne”) daily business operations.

With regard to the city and its residents, the introduction of .koeln provides a new means for companies, communities and residents to express their local sense of belonging. As Cologne is known for its strong local patriotism, it is very likely that the new gTLD will be embraced by the city’s interest groups, who will then have a means to express their identification with Cologne in the web space. However, the benefits for Cologne’s interest groups will be elaborated upon in my more detail in the answers to question 18b.

Yet, NetCologne’s purpose to host the respective gTLD goes beyond the mere provision of an additional Top Level Domain. When introducing a city TLD for local residents, companies and communities, the respective TLD must be safeguarded against any fraudulent behaviour. Therefore, NetCologne intends to make sure that only organisations, communities and private people with an eligible purpose can register their domain under a .koeln Top Level Domain, so that the city’s reputation sustains. As being a local company, NetCologne believes to be the ideal candidate for this purpose.

Apart from the primary interest to offer the city and its interest groups a local TLD, hosting .koeln will also strengthen NetCologne’s business operations. NetCologne is planning to use the already established outreach to Cologne’s companies, communities and residents in order to promote .koeln in Cologne and the surrounding area. Thus, besides operating as a registry, NetCologne also intends to engage in reselling activities – of course while granting other registrars the same conditions. NetCologne’s activities as a reseller will be performed in full accordance with the requirements according to Specification 9 no. 2. NetCologne is currently already operating as a provider for various Top Level Domains, so .koeln will add to the already existing portfolio and potentially expand NetCologne’s domain business. Present customers will be able to order their preferred .koeln domain via their already trusted service provider while mere .koeln customers may potentially also turn into customers of NetCologne’s core business units – online and telephony services.

In order to consider the gTLD’s introduction as successful, NetCologne expects to operate 58,402 .koeln domains by the end of year 5 of registry operations. The forecast on registered .koeln domains is therefore as follows: Year 1 Year 2 Year 3 Year 4 Year 5 21,065 41,534 49,556 53,287 58,402

This forecast includes the direct sales of domains to accredited registrars, but also the additional sales by NetCologne in combination with already existing Internet products, for example homepage services or webspace. Moreover, this calculation accounts for an annual termination rate of 2%. ...

As indicated, NetCologne has decided to reserve and block specific terms and names from domain name registration. The decision to reserve certain names at the second level was made in order to protect especially the city’s rights. As will further be laid out in the answer to question 22, NetCologne therefore has granted the city the opportunity to reserve various names at the second level. These include - Names of relevant authorities - Generic terms with relevance for the city - Names of municipal organisations and holdings - Urban districts - Fractions of the city council - Chambers

The respective names were thoroughly compiled by the city’s representatives. By reserving these names at the second level, NetCologne makes sure that the city’s rights are protected from fraudulent behaviour.

Moreover, as laid out above, NetCologne as a local company intends to protect .koeln from fraudulent registrations and abusive behaviour. Thus, in order to prevent from domain name registrations which are defamatory, racist or in breach of public law, the city council was granted the opportunity to compile a list of names and terms which will be blocked. The compilation of blocked names was conducted by the city council itself, the respective list was bound to the provision of the letter of support. These names and terms will not be available for registration over the entire registry lifespan, i.e. at least for ten years. If however a domain name happens to be registered which is defamatory, racist or in breach of public law a specified process will set in and the respective name will be added to the existing list of blocked names."[3]

Contract Signed

On 09 January 2014 dotKöln received a Registry Agreement signed by ICANN for .koeln after passing all the required processes needed to become a Registry Operator for the string.[4]

Delegation and Availability

.koeln was delegated to the Root Zone of the DNS on 5 March, 2014, completing the successful application for the string.[2]

References