Community Applicants

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A Community TLD is a regulated type of generic top level domain name (gTLD) made possible through ICANN's New gTLD Program; it is intended for communities that are interested in operating their own TLD registry.

Communities are given precedence for TLDs in contention; that is, if there are multiple applicants for a given string, and one of the applicants passes the community priority evaluation, then that applicant is automatically given precedence to the TLD. Community priority evaluations will be conducted by the The Economist Intelligence Unit and InterConnect Communications [1].

According to the applicant guidebook, an applicant for a community-based gTLD is expected to:


1. Demonstrate an ongoing relationship with a clearly delineated community.

2. Have applied for a gTLD string strongly and specifically related to the community named in the application.

3. Have proposed dedicated registration and use policies for registrants in its proposed gTLD, including appropriate security verification procedures, commensurate with the community-based purpose it has named.

4. Have its application endorsed in writing by one or more established institutions representing the community it has named.


Community TLD applicants have organized into an informal group to represent their interests in the ICANN process. The group is called the Community TLD Applicant Group (CTAG). Participation is open to community TLD applicants only and has over thirty active members. The group can be contacted via its Twitter handle @TheCTAG


The full requirements for a community TLD can be found here.

Community Applicants in Contention

Contested Generic Community Apps

The following are all contested TLDs containing at least one community priority applicant, though in some cases there are two competitive community applications. Furthermore, some community applicants have applied twice; once as a community and once as a generic applicant, as a way of ensuring they are still able to compete for the TLD should ICANN deny their community status per its TLD rules.


1. .bank, has been applied for by two applicants, with only one, fTLD Registry Services LLC applying as a community applicant. That company is a partnership between the American Bankers Association (ABA) & BITS, the technology policy arm of the Financial Services Roundtable.[2] The ABA and Roundtable initiative is endorsed by the Australian Bankers' Association, American Bankers Insurance Association, British Bankers' Association, European Banking Federation, Independent Community Bankers of America, the International Banking Federation, and numerous financial services institutions.[3]

The non-community applicant for .bank is Radix, a portfolio applicant and subsidiary of Directi that has applied for 31 new gTLDs.


2. .cpa, there are a total of 5 applicants submitting 6 applications for .cpa; one of the applicants, The American Institute of Certified Public Accountants, has submitted a community priority application and a general application, this is done to ensure that the applicant still has a chance to manage the TLD even if it is denied community status by ICANN. The other community priority applicant is the CPA AUSTRALIA LTD.

The American Institute of Certified Public Accountants "set the professional and administrative standards for all CPA in the United States..[it] both administers and grades the professional examination required to obtain a CPA... It is the AICPA members – whose number currently amounts to about 377,000 members in 128 countries – and their needs that the Applicant is committed to serve since its establishment more than 100 years ago." The AICPA has international affiliates, including the Institute of Chartered Accountants in Australia. Their registration polices state that, "[a]t least during the initial months or even years following the delegation of the .cpa gTLD to the Applicant, this extension is likely going to be a so-called “single registrant TLD”..where “(i) all domain name registrations in the TLD are registered to, and maintained by, Registry Operator for its own exclusive use, and (ii) Registry Operator does not sell, distribute or transfer control or use of any registrations in the TLD to any third party that is not an Affiliate of Registry Operator.” The AICPA goes on to state that it foresees a time when "its Affiliates, individual members and possibly third parties who perform services or offer products to the benefit of the Applicant’s members, will possibly be entitled to register domain names in .cpa."[4]

CPA AUSTRALIA LTD (CPA Australia) represents a membership of 139,000 Certified Practicing Accountants (CPAs) spread across 114 countries, with a particularly strong presence in the fast growing Asia-Pacific region including China, Hong Kong and Singapore. Registration will be open to full CPA members and students; and "[a]t some point in the future, the CPA Australia community may review and consider expanding the community to include practicing accountants and other members of various CPA organisations around the world which also use a similar CPA designation."[5]


of the applications for .cpa applications were issued a GAC Early Warning from the representative of Australia and GAC Chair, Heather Dryden. These include both of the community applications, the general application from the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants, and a generic application from the portfolio applicant Donuts. Two other applicants for .cpa were not given warnings. The warning system is noted as a strong recommendation on behalf of national governments to the ICANN Board that a given TLD application should be denied as it stands. Applicants are encouraged to work with objecting GAC members.[6] The warnings issued note that the application does not have sufficient protective mechanisms in place to prevent consumer harm in what is a regulated market (certified public accounting).[7]

3. .eco, There are 4 applications for .eco, including the one community application from Big Room Inc.. "In 2009, Big Room, itself a Certified B Corporation obliged to consider environmental, social and financial interests, launched an international multi-year stakeholder consultation process with the Community on the potential for .ECO to exist as a Community TLD. The process included 7 in-person consultations on 5 continents. Draft policies were published for 3 public comment periods of at least 30 days each...Since establishment, this international multi-stakeholder community council, made up of leading environmental organizations including WWF International, Greenpeace International, Green Cross International and others, has worked to define the mission, purpose and policies for a .ECO Community TLD that reflects the Community’s interests. The council’s work included 2 in-person meetings (Brussels ⁄ Washington, DC) and more than 20 conference calls between members. In September 2010, the council unanimously adopted a charter for the .ECO Community TLD - the .ECO Policy Consensus. The purpose and principles outlined in the .ECO Policy Consensus define what .ECO will mean as an active expression of the goals, values and interests of the Community. The Consensus has been reviewed and affirmed by the Big Room board of directors."

Eligibility for registration will be based on responses to questions about the environmental performance, commitments and actions of registrants, within the context of the purpose, type and location of the registrant. Responses will be compiled and posted into a public ".ECO-Profile". The .ECO profiles will be aggregated into a common online platform called the ".ECO System". This process is described in detail in Big Room's application and was designed in collaboration with and approved by the global environmental community. The process is designed to encourage action in support of environmental goals, foster environmental transparency, and allow for broad participation in registering .ECO domains.[8]

4. .gay There are 4 total applicants for the .gay TLD, including one community applicant, dotgay LLC. The company is supported by the International Gay & Lesbian Travel Association (IGLTA), National Gay & Lesbian Chamber of Commerce (NGLCC) and the National Gay & Lesbian Chamber of Commerce, New York (NGLCCNY). dotgay LLC plans to donate 67% of the revenue generated from the sales of .gay domain names to non-profit LGBT organizations.[9] Their registration policies will include participation by "authentication partners", which will be gay and lesbian membership organization, ".gay is restricted to members of the Gay Community. Eligibility is determined through formal membership with any of dotgay LLC’s Authentication Partners (AP) from the community." Generic terms, such as "travel", will be reserved at the second level to create community resources, i.e. "travel.gay". [10]


5. .gmbh, there are 6 applicants for .gmbh, one of them being a community application submitted by TLDDOT GmbH. The CEO of the company is the long-time ICANN participant, Dirk Krischenowski. GmbH is an acronym for the German corporate mark "Gesellschaft mit beschränkter Haftung", which means "company with limited liability". The designation is equivalent to an LLC mark elsewhere, and it is used in Germany, Austria, Switzerland, and Liechtenstein. The applicant delineates the GmbH community along 3 layers: first, the Government, responsible for the oversight of the title; second, Chambers and Associations, which represent whole collections of GmbH companies, and are sometimes required to exist by law; and thirdly, the GmbH companies themselves.

The applicant sees itself as a member and leader of the community, as it is itself a GmbH; that it has worked with the government's of the respective countries using GmbH within ICANN's GAC; and that it has maintained relations with major GmbH associations, such as the BVMW (The German Association for Small and Medium-sized Businesses). The only letter of support that is attached to its application is a letter from the latter association, which is the largest such association in Germany.[11]


6. .hotelThe 7 applications for .hotel include one community priority applicant, HOTEL Top-Level-Domain S.a.r.l. Registration would be restricted to hotels, hotel chains, hotel associations, and marketing or other representative organizations that work directly for hotels and hotel chains. The applicant is a member of 4 hotel associations, which support its application; the CEO of HOTEL Top-Level-Domain S.a.r.l, Johannes Lenz-Hawliczek, serves on the board of directors for the International Hotel & Restaurant Association; and the applicant has secured endorsement from the organizations to which it belongs, and other international and regional hotel associations - with 5 total letters attached to its application.

A post-registration verification process will be put in place; whereby the domain can be registered but not fully implemented until the registrant is authorized as a legitimate member of the hotel community. "For evaluation purposes industry databases will be used, like hotel association databases or other electronically available databases. Within 48 hours after registration started, the registry will provide the evaluation result to the registrar.. Once reviewed the reviewer will confirm or deny the registration."[12]


7. .insurance, there are 4 applicants for .insurance, including one community priority application from fTLD Registry Services LLC (FRS). FRS is a joint partnership between the American Bankers Association (ABA) and the [[Financial Services Roundtable]. "At the behest and approval of both the ABA and the Roundtable members and Boards, FRS was formed in 2011 for the explicit purpose of applying for and operating financial services-related gTLDs. In addition, FRS seeks to protect the brand space, improve the protection available for a more secure Internet ecosystem, collaborate on delivering more innovative and secure products and services, and zealously advocate for the interests of the insurance community with ICANN."

"The .insurance gTLD will be operated by FRS on behalf of the U.S. insurance industry. This includes 3,750 companies (according to a 2010 report by the National Association of Insurance Commissioners) and 2,250,000 agents and brokers (according to a 2010 report by the National Insurance Producer Registry). It also includes over 233 state insurance associations and 52 other types of insurance-related associations. As of April 10, 2012, endorsers of the FRS .insurance initiative include the American Bankers Insurance Association, The Allstate Corporation, Nationwide, Prudential Financial, Inc., and State Farm Insurance Companies."

Registration will include the submission of information to be used to verify standing as an insurance company (referral to the regulatory authority issuing its charter), or mission statements, brokerage license numbers, or association members for those members of the community that are not themselves insurance companies. "Domain names that pass the vetting process will enter a 5-day Add Grace Period (AGP), or Pending Create, before becoming valid. Applicants whose domain name fails the vetting process will be notified with reasons for denial and procedures for appeal. Any applicant who is rejected for any reason can appeal the decision to FRS." All initial registrations must be made to correspond to valid trademarks, trade names, or service marks. Generic terms will be set aside to be used by FRS or to be sold at a date post-launch.[13]


8. .kids, the TLD, .kids, has been applied for by two parties; Amazon has applied for it as a generic TLD, while the DotKids Foundation Limited has applied for it as a Community TLD. The kids community includes kids (defined by the U.N. as any human under the age of 18), Parents and educators, Charities NGOs and Governmental instituions and educational instituions. The applicant has received a number of endorsements, especially from individuals and organizations based in Hong Kong, where the applicant is also based.

"The Registry intends to remain independent to the community. However, the Registry will work closely with community organizations and will invite community organizations in its policy development processes and governance structure. Also, we see the participation from the community crucial to our success." The applicant intends to restrict registration to kids-centric organizations and services, and registrants must adhere to a policy that limits their content to only beneficial, kid-centric material.[14]


9. .med, there are 4 applications for .med, two of them being community priority applications. The two community applicants are DocCheck AG and HEXAP SAS. However, the former withdrew its application after .med received a number of objections filed by the Independent Objector, a neutral legal expert funded by ICANN to object to applications that endanger the public good. It had withdrawn as of March 15th 2013, just days after the IO's objections were announced, qualifying for a 70% refund of its $185,000 application fee.[15]

DocCheck AG defined the community as falling into 6 groups: Medical, Scientific-Technical, Nursing/Assisting, Pharmacy, Collegiate, and Business/Publishing. DocCheck is known for its DocCheck.com site, which is the largest community of healthcare professionals in Europe. In its application it notes that there is no single, authoritative medical body that oversees the international medical community, but that its own service and 860,000 registered members make it a significant part of the international medical community. It is a German company. As noted above, its application has been withdrawn.[16]

Registration of a .med domain will require registration on DocCheck's exisiting .com site, where they have been verifying medical credentials for 10+ years and are consequently experienced in determining and classifying individuals in the medical profession.[17]

The second community applicant, HEXAP SAS, has significantly more endorsement letters attached to its application, including letters from The Mayo Clinic, Stanford, The World Dental Federation, The French Medical Order of Physicians, and other international and regional organizations. [18] "Registrants cannot be anonymous in that sense that they have to provide accurate and full-contact information to the Registry Operator, which information will be published in the .MED Whois. In order to register a domain name, the candidate registrant must certify that he or she is a health-care professional who is licensed to practice in the country where he purports to be working. Any such information will need to be reported to the Medical Clearinghouse, operated by HEXAP, and must be kept up-to-date at all times throughout the lifecycle of the domain name."[19]


10. .mls, there are a total of 3 applications for .mls, a TLD aimed at the real estate agency. "MLS" is an acronym for multiple listing service, which is a widely used real estate database in North America. There are 3 applications, but only 2 applicants, as the Canadian Real Estate Association applied as a community priority applicant and as a standard gTLD applicant. This is a means of ensuring that the Canadian Real Estate Association is still in a place to be delegated the TLD, even if it is not accepted as a community TLD.

While .mls has been applied for by the Canadian Association, it has already reached a deal to allow partners in America, the MLS Domains Association, to verify and sell its domains in the USA.[20] Their registration policies state: "Only members of CREA and its Foreign Affiliates will be permitted to register .MLS websites. The .MLS TLD will initially be made available to CREA’s Board members and Foreign Affiliate members. After undertaking any required assessments, CREA may enter into a second phase where the TLD would be made available to broker and salespeople members of CREA. Boards using the .MLS TLD will be required to use their corporate name, or an acronym of their corporate name, as the second level domain. Foreign Affiliate members will be required to include geographical modifiers in their second level domains on the .MLS TLD or clearly indicate the geographical area served by their system on any site page. For example, the Durham MLS would not be able to simply register Durham.mls, as this domain could be confusing with Durham, Ontario. The Durham MLS would be required to include a geographical modifier, like DurhamNorthCarolina.mls, or they would have to display something like a map of North Carolina on their home page."[21]


11. .music, there are 8 applications for .music, including 2 community priority application, DotMusic / CGR E-Commerce Ltd and .music LLC (Far Further).

The dot Music initiative (DotMusic / CGR E-Commerce Ltd) was started by Constantine Roussos in 2005. He launched the dotMusic (music.us) website dedicated to gathering support via a petition to ICANN to approve the .music TLD for the global music industry. His initiative was supported by members of the music industry including bands, musicians, companies, professionals and many others. Based on the dotMusic website, Roussos' initiative gathered more than 1.5 million signatures for the petition.[22] [23] Organizations it counts among its supporters include the International Federation of Arts Councils & Culture Agencies (IFACCA).[24]

The other community applicant is Far Further (.music LLC). Many of its executives are also members of music organizations and associations, and the applicant claims that "there are forty-two (42) clearly delineated, organized and pre-existing music community organizations that have provided individual written statements of support. This unparalleled level of global music community representation is referred to as the Charter Member Organizations of the Global Music Community (GMC). Collectively they represent over 4 million individual members within more than 1,000 associations in over 150 countries...Potential domain registrants must be members of or affiliated with at least one Member Organization of the Global Music Community."[25]


12. .radio, there are 4 applicants for the .radio TLD, including one community priority applicant, the European Broadcasting Union (EBU). The EBU is the largest international association of national broadcasters, and it counts the World Broadcasting Unions (WBU), the Association Mondiale des Radiodiffuseurs Communautaires (AMARC) among its supporters. It intends to support local and national radio programs, online radios and podcasts that maintain consistent programming, and amateur radio broadcasters. Membership validation will depend on in what way the applicant participates and has been registered within the broadcasting community.[26]

During ICANN 44 in Prague, the European Broadcasting Union requested permission to become a recognized observer in ICANN's GAC. This move raised questions of conflicts of interest, given that GAC advice is to be strongly considered by the ICANN Board during application proceedings.[27] Fellow .radio applicant, BRS Media, sent a letter to a chair of the GAC, Heather Dryden, complaining that granting the EBU observer status would cause a conflict of interests, and requesting that the EBU withdraw its GAC application immediately in order to recuse itself from all new gTLD discussions.[28] The EBU went on to be accepted into the GAC.[29]


13. .shop, there are 9 applications for .shop from 8 applicants. One community priority applicant, GMO Registry, also submitted a generic application in order to still have a chance at the TLD should they not be awarded the community designation. The other community applicant, Commercial Connect LLC, submitted only the one community application.

The application from Commercial Connect LLC defines its community as e-Commerce operators that run "B2C site[s] that utilize credit card processing requiring them to abide by PCI DSS (Payment Card Industry Data Security Standards) to operate." The company notes that "We are the original applicant for .SHOP from the 2000 round. While there were other applicants in the initial rounds, Commercial Connect was the only one that made it through the entire qualification process. When delegation of .SHOP was put off until the ʺnextʺ round, CC has been working with the above community to establish its relationship and representation in that community. Initially, since there was no clear community representation, we worked on establishing some form of a member trade association. The result was the creation of ECWR.net (eCommerce World Retailers). This was formed in March, 2004 and clearly predates the 2007 requirement in the Applicant Guidebook. We currently have in excess of 1,000 members representing a substantial amount of eCommerce (these members represent an equilivant in excess of $866 trillion in annual sales)."[30]

The application by GMO Registry leaves greater room in its use of language for shops providing "offline" commerce services. Their application is supported by a few commerce associations, such as the European Multi-channel and Online Trade Association (EMOTA) and the Japan Foundation for Electronic Commerce (JFEC). THere are not strong membership requirements delineated in the application.[31]


14. .spa, there are 3 applications for the .spa TLD, including 1 community priority application from Asia Spa and Wellness Promotion Council Limited (ASWPC). It is "connected with over 400 licensed spas across Asia and over 2000 spa professionals participating in and attending its events." While the organization is focused on Asia, they intend to operate the TLD as an open, international community space for all members of the spa community, which includes Spa operators, professionals and practitioners, Spa associations and their members, and spa products and services manufacturers and distributors. The ASWPC will create an International Registry board to oversee the registration policies for the TLD.[32]


15. .sport, there are 2 applicants for .sport, including one community application; there is also a non-community application for the plural version, .sports. The community application comes from Sport Accord, and it has engaged the International Sports Federations and the International Olympic Committee to comprise a Policy Advisory Board (PAB). "[R]egistrants in .sport must be recognized performers, organizers, promoters or supporters of federated Sport, or belong to categories of registrants recognized by the .sport Policy Advisory Board (PAB)." The Olympic Committee has previously been involved in discussions in [[ICANN] regarding universal protections for its trademarks across all new gTLDs.


16. .taxi, There are 3 applicants for .taxi, including a community priority application submitted by Taxi Pay GmbH. Its primary supporters include taxi organizations and associations in Germany and Austria. It identifies four type of taxi community members: The core industry of taxi drivers and offices; the related industries involved in hardware and software suppliers, automotive repair shops, and insurance companies; subordinate organizations affiliated with government supervision and policy development; and major institutions and locations that rely heavily on taxi services in and around their venue(s).

"First, an applicant for a .taxi second level domain has to submit proof of his or her affiliation with the taxi industry to the desired registrar. This process does not involve any formalities on the side of TaxiPay GmbH except an official document, such as a taxi license or a commensurate certificate of registration stating the purpose of the company and aligning it with a strong affiliation to the taxi community."[33]


17. .tennis, There are 4 applicants for .tennis, including one community applicant, Tennis Australia Ltd, which is the governing body for Tennis in Australia. "Only individuals and entities belonging to the Tennis Australia community will be eligible to register a domain name within the .tennis TLD, as strict eligibility criteria will be introduced...Tennis Australia provides benefits to 2,176 affiliated tennis clubs and their over 180,000 tennis player members throughout Australia."

Current language in its application does not seem to leave room for any registration of the .tennis TLD outside of Australia.[34]


18. .webs, two applications for .webs were submitted by the same applicant, Vistaprint Limited. They define their community as users of their online portal, webs.com: "The ‘WEBS’ community was created in late 2005 by Freewebs, now called Webs, Inc. Webs, Inc. presently is a subsidiary of the Applicant... Since 2006, the Applicant started by giving its users the option to publish their myWebs profile as a page on their website, making it accessible and searchable to all Freewebs – and later on Webs – visitors. The Applicant invested in creating the tools necessary for its members to simply create their Web presence and share their passions with the world. Since its inception, the name of the community was ‘WEBS’. This is shown by the mention of ‘myWebs’ and the mention of the name ‘Webs’ as such to refer to the blog that was used by the community to communicate with each other to share Webs experiences... In 2008 this resulted in the rebranding of the company name from Freewebs into Webs. The community only became stronger and the aim was to have visitors to become active participants. The Applicant, through the Webs platform lets site owners create community-driven sites that visitors can join as members. By giving site members the ability to comment on photos, post to a blog, add to a site calendar, and more, a site becomes more of a living, breathing entity and a reflection of the Webs community."

To begin with the TLD will be a Single Registrant TLD, meaning that the applicant will use it for their own commercial and internal profits and not offer registration to the wider community. "At a later stage, in addition to the Applicant and⁄or its subsidiaries, members of the Webs community will possibly be entitled to register domain names in .WEBS. That is to say, one of the main eligibility criteria will be that the interested party wishing to register a domain name in the .WEBS TLD is either a member of the Applicant or has a sufficiently close link to the Webs community."[35]

Contested Brand Community Apps

20. .merck, There are three applications from two applicants for .merck. The American healthcare company, Merck & Co. Inc., applied twice, once through a community application and once as a general applicant. This was clearly done as a way to edge out any competition that may have also applied for a Merck community application, or keep a stake in the .merck TLD should its own community status be denied. The competitive community applicant is the German-based Merck KGaA pharmaceutical company, which employes over 40,000 people in 70 countries.

"Merck & Co. Inc., parent of Merck Sharp and Dohme Corp., Whitehouse Station, New Jersey, USA (collectively “Merck”), is a Fortune 100 company and one of the largest healthcare companies in the world. Merck has operated under the Merck name and trademark in the United States and Canada since as early as 1920." It defines its community as its own healthcare and pharmaceutical business but also its philanthropic and corporate responsibility programs, and its publications and websites. Registration will be restricted to the company, its subsidiaries, and authorized partners.[36]

"Merck KGaA is a global pharmaceutical, chemical and life science company with approximately 40,000 employees in over 70 countries. In 2010 Merck realized total revenues of EUR 9.3 Billion." Registration is to be restricted to its subsidiaries and affiliates.[37]


Contested IDN Community Apps

21. .广东, there are two applicants for the IDN .广东, which translates as "Guangdong", China's most populous province. The two applicants are the Xinhua News Agency Guangdong Branch and the Guangzhou YU Wei Information Technology Co., Ltd.; the former applied as a community priority applicant.

Xinhua News Agency Guangdong Branch, the community applicant, applied with consultive help from CNNIC, the Chinese national registry, and the DotAsia Organisation. The application's contact is Edmon Chung, CEO of the DotAsia Organisation. "With a population of over 100 million, a GDP of over US$800 Billion, and established since AD 226, the community is sizable and has considerable longevity." The applicant defines the community as the individuals, organizations, and companies in Guangdong province, the international Cantonese language community, which originated from Guangdong originally, and companies interested in expanding into Guangdong. The applicant lists a number of organizations and regional representatives to which it intends to reach out and serve. "the Registry will work closely with community organizations and will invite community organizations in its policy development processes. Furthermore, the Applicant is official government agency of the Guangdong province." Their registration policy will be based off of the .asia charter.[38]

The other applicant, Guangzhou YU Wei Information Technology Co., Ltd., did not apply for community priority. However, it claims that "[i]t is officially appointed and endorsed by the Guangdong provincial government with mission and purpose of applying for the relevant geographic gTLDs upon the launch of the ICANN new gTLD program and subsequently operating and managing these geographic gTLDs."[39]

Contested Geo Community Apps

22. .osaka Interestingly, the government of Osaka, Japan, gave permission to four different entities to apply for the GeoTLD, .osaka. In the end, two companies applied, GMO Registry and Interlink Co. Ltd.. The later is a ISP and registrar, while the former is a company formed to apply for new TLDs and provide TLD consultancy services.[40]

However, Interlink Co. Ltd. applied for community priority whereas GMO Registry did not. Beyond securing the Government's support, Interlink also recieved letters of support from organizations and companies around Osaka, which is itself a requisite of a community priority application. "The Osaka community has been in existence for thousands of years, and is known as Japan’s oldest capital. Osaka has been an economic and cultural center of the Japan for over a long span of time, though formally, the geographic area that defines the community, Osaka Prefecture, was formally established in 1868... The community is best defined by its geographic boundaries. The Osaka Prefecture is currently the 3rd most populous area in Japan with a community of over 8.8 million people." The applicant delineates the community along as including legal entities, citizens, governments and public sectors; it proposed creating a Domain Advisory Committee composed of members from each area in order to create, enforce, and oversee its registration policies.

"All registrants of an “.osaka” name must satisfy at least one the following: Osaka municipalities and local governments; Public and private institutions in Osaka; Organizations, companies, and other businesses in Osaka; Residents of Osaka; Others community members who have a bona fide purpose for registering and using a “.osaka” domain. Registrants who purchase “.osaka” names will be required to certify that meet one of the categories above. Meeting these requirements is on a continual basis, and therefore the registrant re-certifies compliance with the above during each subsequent renewal term. In other words, registrants must ensure they remain in compliance with the Nexus Requirement."[41]

Uncontested Community Applications

The following are uncontested generic community priority applications. While some of them seem to be geographic TLDs, they did not self-identify or file their application as such.

1..bzh, The target of the .bzh community app is the Breton people, aiming to "to represent, characterize and display all of its cultural, economic and social productions on the internet."

"Brittany is a western region of France with a specific culture and history, including two local languages (Breton and Gallo), and a strong identity. The members of the community are, first and foremost, the inhabitants of the cultural and linguistic Breton area (4,441,000 people in 2009) and its diaspora (between 4 and 6 million people), established across the globe, and in particular in France. The Breton language (brezhoneg in Breton) is one of the six Celtic languages still spoken in Europe alongside Welsh and Cornish, with which it forms the Brittonic branch of Celtic languages, and Scottish Gaelic, Irish and Manx. Today it is the Celtic language with the third largest number of speakers. It is recognized as a regional and minority language in France, one of the languages of the Brittany area as well as the Gallo and the French. It is deemed severely endangered by the UNESCO. A cultural language, the Breton has an extensive written literature. Its revival essentially occurred in the 1970s, when the population showed a renewed interest...

The abbreviation BZH is also a marker of a cultural and linguistic identity."

Membership of the community will be judged by: Residence or Headquarters in Brittany; a significant amount of the content dedicated to Brittany or Breton culture; A significant portion of the website in Breton or Gallo; Membership in the association BZH.[42]


2. .catholic, the community application by the Vatican's Papal Council for Social Communications (Pontificium Consilium de Comunicationibus Socialibus, PCCS) is one of 4 applications for a catholic delineated TLD, the other three are all IDNs: .католик, .كاثوليك, and .天主教.

"The PCCS is a Dicastery of the Holy See, the governing body of the Catholic Church..The “Holy See” is internationally acknowledged to be the highest juridical authority of the Catholic Church, being governed by the Pope, also referred to as “the Supreme Pontiff of the Universal Catholic Church”. For instance, the U.S. Department of State states that “the “Holy See” is the universal government of the Catholic Church and operates from Vatican City State, a sovereign, independent territory […]. The Pope is the ruler of both Vatican City State and the Holy See. The Holy See, as the supreme body of government of the Catholic Church, is a sovereign juridical entity under international law.”[43]

To quote their registration policies: "The eligibility to register a domain name within the .catholic TLD will be restricted to the PCCS and the PCCS alone. Use of a .catholic domain name may be granted at the sole discretion of the PCCS to an affiliate such as recognised dioceses, religious orders and Catholic Church-affiliated institutions. The PCCS maintains a list of affiliates formally recognised by the Holy See as being part of the Catholic Church and thus being eligible to be granted use of a .catholic domain name. This list is primarily based on, however not exclusively, on the Annuario Pontificio (the official annual directory of all institutions related to the Holy See)."[44]


3. .corsica, is a ethno-geographic TLD dedicated to the people and culture of Corsia and individuals and businesses that identify in or through them. The applicant is the Collectivité Territoriale de Corse (CTC), which is the regional Government of Corsica, and as is states in its application, "without doubt, the most legitimate entity representing the interests of the Corsican people." Corsica is one of the 22 regions of France.

Firm registration policies were not outline in its application, however it promised to create a charter before implementation with input from AFNIC and a third party consultant, which is subject to approval by the Corsican parliament. "The charter will aim to be sufficiently open encourage large numbers of registrations from legitimate content and service providers, but sufficiently restrictive and with sufficient provisos to protect the TLD against all types of abusive behaviour. It will contain a complete description of the procedures in case of dispute over a domain name."[45]


4. .eus, the .eus community application submitted by Puntueus Fundazioa is a geographic, cultural, linguistic focused TLD for the Basque region, people, language, and diaspora. It seems to be following the success of .cat as an sTLD for the Catalan community. "Eus is the contraction of “Euskara”, which means “basque language” in Basque." The organization has the written support of a wide-range of Basque centric entities. Puntueus Fundazioa plans to restrict registration to legitimate and well-inteioned actors within the Basque cultural-linguistic community; It will first seek out prominent entities in the community prior to general launch, and post general launch it will "[require registrants] to state their intended use of the registered domain name. A false statement of intended use is an indication of bad faith and can be the basis for the suspension of the domain name."[46]


5. .gal, the .gal community TLD is aimed at the Galician linguistic and cultural community, which originated in Galicia, an area in northwestern Iberian Peninsula. It can be seen as building upon the success of .cat as an extension for the Catalan community, which was introduced in 2005. It is being applied for by The Asociación puntoGAL; members of the association include the most authoritative Galician language authority, The Real Academia Galega (RAG). Registrants will be required tos tate their intended use for the domain; a false statement is grounds for removal of the domain and of future participation in the community TLD.[47]


6. .halal Asia Green IT System Bilgisayar San. ve Tic. Ltd. Sti. (AGITSys) is the only applicant for the .halal TLD, and its application is a community priority application. Halal (Arabic: حلال‎ ḥalāl, ʺlawfulʺ) is a term designating any object or an action which is permissible to use or engage in, according to Islamic law. The term is used to designate food seen as permissible according to Islamic law. However, given that there are a variety of Islamic sects, and that regional interpretations of the law vary widely, creating definitive and universal lists of what is halal is problematic.[48] Still, many tenets of what is halal are widely accepted.[49] Intended registrants extend to "manufacturers of soups, grains, cosmetics, pharmaceuticals, prepared foods, and other products, as well as hotels, restaurants, airlines, hospitals, and other service providers."

"AGITSYS is founded, owned and managed by Muslim people. AGITSys uses the expertise of the Muslim technical men, and it is incorporated in Turkey, one of the countries with the majority of Muslim people (98% Muslims)...Registrations in the .HALAL will be restricted to 1) those who can produce a copy of a halal certificate demonstrating that the goods and services they provide meet the generally accepted hahal standard and⁄or 2) all goods and service providers headquartered and operating in Islamic countries as they are deemed halal by their ability to operate in an Islamic country."[50]

The applicant has a number of endorsement letters from Halal associations, organizations, and authorities; many of these are Shia-identifying.[51] The applicant has also applied for .shia, .pars, and .islam.


7. .islam the only applicant for the .islam community TLD is Asia Green IT System Bilgisayar San. ve Tic. Ltd. Sti. (AGITSys). The applicant notes that they are a Muslim-owned and operated company, and that they reside in a predominantly Mulsim country, Turkey. "Registrants must electronically accept that they have pronounced the Shahadah (declaration of faith) which states, “I testify that there is no god except for the God [Allah], and I testify that Muhammad is the Messenger of the God... We will ask all members to honor Islamic Culture, Heritage and rules. We will also require registrants to ensure that websites hosted within the .ISLAM gTLD do not violate the sensitivities of the Muslim Community. These requirements will be enforced through the [Acceptable Use Policy] and other contracts registrants must sign with their registrars prior to the registration of a domain name...AGITSys will randomly audit domain names registered in the .ISLAM gTLD to ensure compliance with all eligibility and use criteria. If a violation is discovered, an investigation will begin immediately to rectify said violation. Penalties for violation range from suspension of a domain, to removal of the domain name from the TLD and blacklisting of the registrant, preventing them from being able to register any other names in the .ISLAM TLD."[52]

The applicant has also applied for .pars, .halal, and .shia


8. .ismaili The sole applicant for this TLD is the Aga Khan Foundation, whose Chairman, His Highness the Aga Khan, is the 49th hereditary Imam of the Shia Ismaili Muslims. "Registrations in the .ISMAILI TLD will be limited to Ismaili institutions recognized by the Ismaili Constitution as ordained by the 49th Imam, His Highness the Aga Khan...The Ismailis are the only Shia Muslims to have a living, hereditary Imam; it is the presence of the living Imam that makes the community unique."

This will effectively be a closed TLD; "The AGA KHAN FOUNDATION intends to create and operate the TLD as a single registrant⁄single user registry and will reserve domain names under the TLD for exclusive registration by the AGA KHAN FOUNDATION and its representatives to the exclusion of other parties. In addition, the AGA KHAN FOUNDATION does not intend to sell, distribute or transfer control or use of any second level domain name registrations in the TLD to any party other than to its representatives and related organisations."[53]


9. .lds, the only applicant for .lds is IRI Domain Management, LLC; the TLD is a widely-used and acceptable acronym for "Latter Day Saints", referring the the Church of Latter Day Saints and its community, who are also known as Mormons. The applicant has also applied for .mormon, though that TLD was not filed as a Community TLD.

"The Applicant is a subsidiary of Intellectual Reserve, Inc., a wholly owned corporation of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints..The Applicant is directly accountable to general Church officers, who in turn are accountable to Church members through semi-annual worldwide General Conferences, where they are invited to express publicly their continuing support for that leadership."

'Eligibility to register domain names under the .LDS gTLD will be highly restricted. Only the Applicant and its designated representative, Church officers and employees, and organizations affiliated with the Church will have authority to register names."[54]


10. .ngo & .ong, are community priority applications submitted by The Public Interest Registry (PIR), the current non-profit registry of the .org TLD. NGO is an acronym for "Non-Governmental Organization", just as ONG is the French equivalent, "Organisation Non-Gouvernementale". PIR is itself an NGO.

"all registrants must demonstrate affiliation through NGO membership organizations or through evidence of NGO status. PIR will work with membership organization, the NGO Community Advisory Council, and other members of the NGO Community to validate their eligibility."[55]


11. .pars, the only applicant for .pars is Asia Green IT System Bilgisayar San. ve Tic. Ltd. Sti. (AGITSys). The TLD refers to Persion people and culture. "The term ‘Pars’ (Pârs: پارس) refers to the original homeland of the Persian people. The native name of the Persian language is Fârsi or Pârsi. Persia and Persian both derive from the Hellenized form Πέρσις Persis of the root word Pârs. The Old Persian word was Pârsa...Asia Green IT System Bilgisayar San. ve Tic. Ltd. Sti. (AGITSys) was founded by individuals of Persian origin who derive a great sense of honor from their community, history and ancestry. AGITSys’ founders have gathered together a team with extensive experience in Persian language on the Internet, a daunting but critical task."

Registration of the TLD will require the registrant to declare their connection to the Persian ethnic, linguistic and cultural community. "We will also require registrants to ensure that websites hosted under these domain names contain Persian scripts to promote the Persian language as a valuable resource of the Persian Community. AGITSYS will explore the use of automated measures to search for and evaluate the use of Persian scripts on websites registered in the .PARS gTLD. Those registrants who do not comply with the usage requirements above will have punitive action taken against them, potentially leading to their website being de-listed."[56]


12. .pharmacy, the only applicant for .pharmacy is the community application from the National Association of Boards of Pharmacy; it "is submitting this application with the support of international pharmacy coalitions and national pharmacy associations to ensure that the .PHARMACY gTLD shall serve as a trusted, hierarchical, and intuitive namespace for legitimate Internet pharmacies." The organization is already involved in verifying and accreditating different types of online pharmacies, and its registration policies inted to restrict the sell of domains to such legitimate pharmacies. The domains registered will have to correspond to a registered trademark, service mark, or business name. There is not a clear plan in its application for what to do with generic and geographic names, but the applicant plans to consult its community on these issues.[57]


13. .reit, The applicant is the National Association of Real Estate Investment Trusts, Inc.. "REITs are companies that own and most often actively manage income-producing commercial real estate; they were first established in the United States in 1960 and now exist throughout the world. Although the U.S. remains the largest market (in terms of market capitalization), REITs are becoming increasingly prominent throughout the world."

Registration will be restricted to official REITs (pronounced "reets") as defined and recognized by relevant national laws.[58]

14. .shia, the community application for .shia is the only application for the TLD. It was submitted by Asia Green IT System Bilgisayar San. ve Tic. Ltd. Sti (AGITSYS), and it refers to the second-largest denomination of Islam.[59] It states: "AGITSys and its constituent team members hail from the heart of the Shia Muslim community, both in terms of geography and the nationality of the team members. Their links to the community therein are thus irrefutably strong, as they themselves are passionate members of it...[and] In order to register a .SHIA Domain Name, you declare that you are part of the Islamic Religious and Cultural Community. Registrants must electronically accept that they have pronounced the Shahadah (declaration of faith) which states, “I testify that there is no god except for the God [Allah], and I testify that Muhammad is the Messenger of the God.”[60]

Saudi Arabia has notably contested 160 TLD applications, including the religious community applications for .catholic, .islam, and .shia.[61] The applicant has also applied for .halal, .pars and .islam.

15. .swiss, There were previously two applicants for the .swiss TLD; Swiss International Air Lines Ltd. and the Swiss Confederation, the latter being a Community Priority Applicant. The former applicant was seeking the TLD as a brand play and later withdrew its application following a variety of objections, including from the Swiss GAC representative. The .swiss registry is fully recognized by the Sovereign Confederation of Switzerland. It has secure CORE at its backend registry operator. "The purpose of the TLD .swiss is to serve the Swiss community, defined as the community of individuals, legal entities and public institutions with a bona fide presence in Switzerland."

"A bona fide presence in Switzerland (and thus community membership) (A) is a necessary but NOT in itself a sufficient condition for the right to hold any imaginable .swiss domain name. As the policy principles under (B) above show, there are additional requirements specific to the intrinsic role and importance of the domain name in question. These requirements will be defined in detail in specific registration regulations. They concern in particular the nature of the registrant’s presence in Switzerland and the registrant’s use of the domain name. Again, this will based on the fundamental principle of prudence: starting with a conservative registration policy in order to establish quality of and confidence in the .swiss TLD and then gradually opening up the policy as long as it does not endanger this quality and confidence."[62]


The brand application submitted by Swiss International Air Lines Ltd. was issued a GAC Early warning by the Swiss government; the warning system is noted as a strong recommendation on behalf of national governments to the ICANN Board that a given TLD application should be denied.[63]


16. .tatar, an ethno-geographic minded TLD submitted by the The Coordination Center for the Regional Domain for the Republic of Tatarstan, LLC. The majority of Tatars live in the Russian Federation, with a population of 5.5 million, including 2 million in the republic of Tatarstan, 1 million in the republic of Bashkortostan and other 2.5 million in other regions of Russia. Significant minority populations are found in Uzbekistan, Kazakhstan and Ukraine.[64]From their application: "The Tatar language together with the Bashkir language forms the Kypchak-Bolgar (also ʺUralo-Caspianʺ) group within the Kypchak languages (Northwestern Turkic). While Tatars formed different groups by regions of residence, they speak the same language, with just minor local differences, which gave rise to a number of dialects. There are three Tatar dialects: Eastern, Central, and Western ones. The Central (Volga) Tatar is the base of literary Tatar. As concerns the alphabet, Tatar is a Russian Cyrillic-based language, with 6 additional letters therein. By the Russian Federation Constitution, Tatars exercise the right to use the native language as the second official language, together with Russian, of the Republic of Tatarstan."

Its supporters include: The Chamber of Commerce of the Republic of Tatarstan, The World Congress of the Tatars, and The Ministry of Informatization and Communications of the Republic of Tatarstan. "During the Landrush and Live periods, domain name registration is open for any person, whether corporation or individual, resident of the Russian Federation or any other jurisdiction, which⁄who fully shares the mission, objectives and philosophy of .TATAR gTLD and agrees with all the Registry Operator’s policies. Prior to submission of the application for registration of its⁄his⁄her first domain name, the registration aspirant is bound to produce for registrar two recommendations from effective registrants in .TATAR. Such recommendations can be produced in the form of an official letter to the registrar or in the form of an electronic confirmation, per procedures established in the gTLD. The Recommendations shall explicitly reference to the aspirant’s name and its⁄his⁄her intention to register a second-level domain name in .TATAR."[65]


17. .thai, The only applicant for .thai is Better Living Management Company Limited, which submitted its app as a community priority application. It is a ethno-geographic TLD aimed at promoting and reinforcing the community of Thai people and speakers throughout Thailand and abroad. The applicant is a Thai company "has received strong support from the Thai government"; its attached endorsements include letters from the Ministry of ICT, the Ministry of the Interior, the Ministry of the Industry, and it notes in its application that it will work closely with THNIC, the national registry for the ccTLD, .th.

Its registration policies are: "Upon registration of a .thai domain name, a registrant must declare from where the proof of presence can be established, and what form of proof it is. A suggested list includes, but not limited to: nationality, business registration, organization, government, etc. BLM does not plan to validate the registrants’ proof-of-presence during the registration process, but rather will rely on the dispute resolution mechanism to allow interested users to dispute on the accuracy of the information."[66]

Brands as Community

While Brand TLDs are not an officially recognized type of TLD by ICANN, in the sense that they do not have requirements such as those placed on IDNs, GeoTLDs, and Community TLDs, they do make up 34% of the entire applicant pool.[67] A small subset of these 643 applicants applied as communities. The benefit they saw in applying in Community surely varies, with some likely trying to secure the TLD over competitive brands that may share the same name, acronym, or trademarks, and others just understanding the applicant guidebook in a way that they saw themselves as a community. The following 16 applicants, in addition to the aforementioned contested Brand Community app for .merck, make up the brands that applied for Community Priority TLDs related to their registered marks and brands.


1. .aco, the applicant is ACO Severin Ahlmann GmbH & Co. KG, which is a "leader in drainage technology with a 2010 turnover of over US$ 670 million. The family-owned company headquartered in Rendsburg⁄Büdelsdorf, Germany, was founded in 1946... The major innovation strength of ACO is built on intense research and development, and its technical expertise in processing polymer concrete, plastic, cast iron, stainless steel and reinforced concrete. The duration of the company is not restricted to a certain period...Today a total of 94 fully owned affiliates in more than 40 countries exist, covering all five continents. The ACO community consists of 3800 employees worldwide."

The TLD will be a closed TLD as registration will be restricted for its own use. Afilias is providing backend services.[68]


2. .adac, The applicant is Allgemeiner Deutscher Automobil-Club e.V. (ADAC), which is an independent, not for-profit organization, with some 18 million members, making it the largest European automobile club and the second-largest worldwide. It is comparable to the American Automobile Association (AAA), which is in fact the only larger such organization. It is especially well known in Germany, where it began. It is envisioned to be a Closed TLD ("single-registrant TLD") by the applicant.[69]


3. .audi, "The applicant, AUDI Aktiengesellschaft, is a large car manufacturer corporation with a 2010 turnover of over US $50 billion and belongs to the second largest car manufacturer worldwide, the Volkswagen AG... The AUDI community members are AUDI Aktiengesellschaft and its affiliated companies globally in which AUDI Aktiengesellschaft holds a majority interest as published in the annual report...All registered second-level domain names in the .AUDI TLD will be exclusively registered by AUDI Aktiengesellschaft as registrant and domain name owner. However, it’s up to the community members to act as administrative contact for domain names and to maintain and use such domain names."[70]

Other Community Applications from the Volkswagen group include .lamborghini and .bugatti

4. .bbb The applicant is The Council of Better Business Bureaus, which "serves as the umbrella organization for local BBBs in the US and Canada. Today, 116 BBBs serve communities across the U.S. and Canada, evaluating, accrediting, and monitoring approximately four million businesses and charities across North America." BBBs are widely recognized, impartial authorities on business practices of institutions across North America. "There are approximately 400,000 businesses accredited by the BBBs throughout North America. These accredited businesses (ABs) have successfully completed a robust accreditation process administered by each local BBB and have contractual agreements which require that they abide by the BBB’s Code of Business Practices."

Registrants will include not only the BBB organization itself, but also its accredited businesses and charities.[71]


5. .bugatti, the applicant is Bugatti International SA, which "is a highly exclusive manufacturer of high-end sports cars and belongs to the second largest car manufacturer worldwide, the Volkswagen AG...The BUGATTI community are the three Bugatti sister companies: Bugatti Automobiles S.A.S., Molsheim, France; Bugatti International S.A., Luxembourg, Luxembourg; Bugatti Engineering GmbH, Wolfsburg, Germany. All BUGATTI community members are having the VOLKSWAGEN Aktiengesellschaft as their parent company, which holds the majority interest. Therefore the three Bugatti sister companies are affiliated with each other." It will be a Closed TLD (Single-Registrant TLD).

Other community brand applications by the Volkswagen Group include .lamborghini and .audi.[72]


6. .edeka, the applicant is EDEKA Verband kaufmännischer Genossenschaften e.V.. EDEKA is a German acronym for “eingetragener Verein”:, which is an association of nine regional cooperatives and further companies like the EDEKABANK. EDEKA group’s 2010 turnover excedded € 43 billion in total, making it the leading company in the German grocery market. The EDEKA group has been involved in grocery retail for over 100 years, and its registered headquarters is in Hamburg, Germany.

"The EDEKA community derives from the association of grocery retailing cooperatives, EDEKA e.V.. The prerequisite of becoming a member of a grocery retailing cooperative requests each potential member of a cooperative society to sign a share of the cooperative. The cooperatives consist of several hundred members, who all have a share of the cooperative. Therefore the EDEKA community members are the EDEKA e.V., and their affiliates. A cooperative is a legal entity owned and democratically controlled by its members. Members often have a close association with the company as producers or consumers of its products or services, or as its employees. The cooperative movement has been fueled globally by ideas of economic democracy in the mid-nineteenth century. Economic democracy is a socioeconomic philosophy that suggests an expansion of decision-making power from a small minority of corporate shareholders to a larger majority of public stakeholders...The applicant (EDEKA e.V.) is formed as an association and is the top body in the EDEKA community and a community member itself. All other EDEKA community members are affiliated cooperatives and other group companies, such as a bank and wholesale distributors, and about 4,500 grocery retailers who are member (shareholder) of one of the nine cooperatives and merchants who operate some 6,300 stores altogether. As such, EDEKA e.V. is essentially an entrepreneurs’ association"

It will be a Closed TLD (Single Registrant TLD).[73]

The applicant worked with Katrin Ohlmer at Dotzon, who is listed as the primary contact on the application.


7. .gea, the applicant is GEA Group Aktiengesellschaft, "one of the largest system providers for food and energy processes... with a 2011 turnover of about € 5.4 billion and close to 24,000 employees worldwide." It and its predecessors have been publicly listed companies. Its principal place of business is Düsseldorf, Germany, and it has been involved in engineering and innovative technologies for over 100 years.

"The GEA community derives from the high-tech system provider GEA. The GEA community members are the GEA Group Aktiengesellschaft (“GEA”) and its globally affiliated companies...Community members are either fully owned by GEA or at least by a majority of 50,1 % shares." The GEA Group Aktiengesellschaft will be the only registrant for the TLD.[74]


8. .gree, The applicant is GREE, Inc., which is a Japanese social networking service, the name comes from the phrase "Six De"gree"s of Separation" postulated by social psychologist Stanley Milgram in 1967, which states that everyone in the world can connect themselves to anyone else on earth through approximately six connections.[75] The company, and hence community, was first established in 2004.

"In March 2007 the community had 1 million members. By April 2009 membership had grown 10-fold to exceed 10 million in approximately 2 years. After OpenFeint joined the GREE group, in December 2011 total membership reached 189.2 million. As the same time, market value of GREE, Inc.was over JPY600 billion (USD7,730 million)."

"[R]egistrations in the .gree TLD will be divided into two categories: A. GREE SNS Community Operator Registration, Domain names registered in this category must be registered solely by an entity that contributes to operation of the community. A.) community operator must be..GREE, Inc. , Companies listed in the annual securities report of GREE, Inc., Contributors to the operation of GREE; B.) GREE SNS Community Member Participant Registration, Domain names registered in this category must be registered by a community operator in conjunction with a community member. Community members who wish to register a domain name under this category will be required to undergo evaluation."

No individual registrations will be permitted.[76]


9. .ieee, the applicant is the "Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers, Incorporated, [which] has more than 400,000 members around the world. This makes it the world’s largest educational and scientific organization dedicated to advancing technological innovation and excellence for the benefit of humanity. The only allowed registrant in the new gTLD will be IEEE Global LLC (“IEEE Global”). Control of content in the gTLD will be limited to IEEE, IEEE’s corporate subsidiaries, and IEEE’s organizational units. (IEEE’s organizational units are not legally separate or autonomous entities, but groupings of members, organized by geographic area, technical specialty, or other area of interest.)"[77]"


10. .ikano, "The applicant, Ikano S.A., is the holding company of an international, family owned group of companies. Ikano was established on April 16, 1988 and develops, owns and manages companies in the areas of asset management, finance, insurance, real estate and retail. The company operates in 17 countries in Europe, Asia and the USA and employs close to 3,000 people. Ikano S.A.’s financials for 2010 were as follows: - Asset management: market value of assets under management 4.5 billion EUR - Finance: business volume 4.2 billion EUR - Insurance: gross premium written 111 million EUR - Real estate: market value property 1 billion EUR - Retail: turnover 245 million EUR.

The Company has its registered office and principal place of business in Luxembourg...Ikano was originally a part of the home furnishing company IKEA. IKEA was founded by Ingvar Kamprad in Sweden, in 1943. In 1988, Ikano became an independent group of companies, owned by the Kamprad family. While Ikano’s first experience was gained from working with IKEA, and IKEA is still an important business partner for Ikano, Ikano has since then developed their own identity and numerous other businesses.[78]"

Katrin Ohlmer of Dotzon is listed as a contact on the application.


11. .lamborghini, The applicant Automobili Lamborghini S.p.A, which is a luxury car-company and an affiliate of Volkswagen Group. "Lamborghini has a history in car making for almost 50 years now: Lamborghini has been founded 1963 in SantʹAgata Bolognese⁄Italy where its registered office and principal place of business is still located. Since its foundation as Automobili Ferruccio Lamborghini S.p.A on May 7, 1963 Lamborghini produces exclusive sports cars, and participated in Formula 1 races from 1989 till 1993..All second-level domain names in the .LAMBORGHINI TLD will be exclusively registered and maintained by Automobili Lamborghini S.p.A. as registrant and domain name owner. However, Automobili Lamborghini S.p.A. is allowed to distribute control or use of any registrations under .LAMBORGHINI domain names to affiliates of Automobili Lamborghini S.p.A..[79]"

Other Community Brand TLDs submitted by affiliates of the Volkswagen group include .audi and .bugatti.


12. .leclerc, The applicant is A.C.D. LEC Association des Centres Distributeurs Edouard Leclerc, "The LECLERC community is composed of all entities or end users having a commercial relationship with the “E.LECLERC Movement”, commonly known under the LECLERC brand. This group was created in 1949 by Edouard Leclerc to develop mass distribution activities. It is composed of independent members that must comply with certain basic rules to be authorized to use the “Leclerc” brand. These basic principles are: the independence of its members, price policies to benefit consumers and consumerism, solidarity and security within the movement, social vocation of the company, and defense of free competition."[80] This is to be a Closed TLD (Single-Registrant TLD)


13. .mma, The applicant is MMA IARD, which claims to be France's "first insurance social network". "MMA insurance social network is a group of social identities- private individuals, professionals, companies, agents, employees- linked to each other through social interactions based on common values of cooperation, exchange of information and energy. The main goal of this network is to ensure a joint coverage to MMAʹs community against all kinds of daily life accidents."

It is to be a Closed TLD (Single-Registrant TLD. Its backend registry provider is AFNIC.[81]


14. .ovh, The applicant is OVH SAS, which is a French hosting company. It is one of the few open, branded community TLD applications: "Buying a .ovh extension will be an entry-level opportunity for an individual to secure a visible web identity at a lower cost than the current rates. It will represent the occasion for this person to easily take place on the webspace without any financial risk. Additionally, the .ovh extension will be a way for this person to assert his belonging to the OVH IT community and enjoy privileged access to OVH services and forums where a large group of customers already collaborate to provide for mutual assistance. Access conditions to a .ovh domain are completely open, as any OVH customer can acquire one."

Its community of clients comprises "approximately 400,000 members."[82]


15. .stada, The applicant is STADA Arzneimittel AG, which "is a large manufacturer of health care and pharmaceuticals goods of all kinds with a 2011 turnover of € 1.72 billion", it is a German based company that has been listed on the Frankfurt stock exchange since 1997.

"The STADA community members are STADA Arzneimittel AG and its globally affiliated companies in which STADA Arzneimittel AG holds a majority interest as published in the annual report." It is to be a Closed TLD (Single-Registrant TLD).[83]

IDNs as Community

16. - 18. .كاثوليك, .天主教, .католик, The applicant is the Pontificium Consilium de Comunicationibus Socialibus, which is the media and communications arm of the Vatican. It has applied for three IDN versions of its English (.catholic) TLD. The scripts represented are Arabic (.كاثوليك), Russian (.католик), and Hans Chinese (.天主教).

It will be a Closed TLD, "Use [..] may be granted at the sole discretion of the PCCS to an affiliate such as recognised dioceses, religious orders and Catholic Church-affiliated institutions. The PCCS maintains a list of affiliates formally recognised by the Holy See as being part of the Catholic Church and thus being eligible to be granted use of a [Catholic IDN domain name]."[84]


19. .政务, this Hans Chinese IDN translates to "Government/Government Affairs". The applicant is China Organizational Name Administration Center (CONAC). "The name of the community that CONAC is committing to serve is “中国政务机构(Chinese Government Organization)”. All members are established by the Chinese Constitution..Today, there are approximately 400,000 organizations in the Chinese government organization community, with the majority located in China, as well as Chinese embassies and consulates in other countries and territories."

Registration will be restricted to verifiable government entities recognized as part of national or regional governments within China.

"Authorized by the China State Commission Office for Public Sector Reform (SCOPSR) and the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology (MIIT), CONAC officially represents the Chinese government organization community to carry out the operation of “.政务.cn” registry."[85]


20. .大众汽车, the applicant is Volkswagen (China) Investment Co., Ltd, and the Hans Chinese IDN is a translation of its "Volkswagen" name. It will be a Closed TLD. The community is defined as its Chinese car manufacturing and sales departments and affiliates, which have been active in China for almost 30 years.[86]

Geographic Communities

21. .barcelona, the applicant is the Municipi de Barcelona, Spain.

"The .barcelona TLD application is submitted by the City Council of Barcelona on behalf of the .barcelona community, and will serve the needs of the .barcelona community, comprising individuals with residence in the City of Barcelona and legal entities with a bona fide presence, direct or indirect, in the Barcelona area or in Barcelona as the capital of Catalonia."

Registrants will have to submit a statement of intent upon registration; a false statement is grounds for termination of the domain and future participation in the .barcelona TLD. "After the launch phase, the validation mode goes from pre-validation to post-validation, with statistically targeted random validation, backed up by an ongoing enforcement program."[87]


22. .berlin, The applicant is dotBERLIN GmbH & Co. KG, whose COO is the well-known ICANN community member Dirk Krischenowski.

The community has been defined in conjunction with the city to include only those individuals and entities that have a verifiable presence or connection to the city of Berlin. Registration will require verification of one of the following: "their residence or second home, office or place of business, a branch or permanent establishment in the City of BERLIN, or; a contact listed in the Whois database with a domicile in the City of BERLIN, or; other appropriate proof e.g. the certification by an employer to enroll at a school or college, or birth certificate."

The City of Berlin has issues a Letter of Support for DotBERLIN.[88]


23. .hamburg, The applicant is Hamburg Top-Level-Domain GmbH, which "has worked closely with the Hamburg Government and its relevant different departments since 2007." It has received a letter of support from the Hamburg Senate. Its registration requirements match those of the above geographic community app for .berlin.[89]


24. .madrid, the applicant is the Comunidad de Madrid. Community membership is determined by: "residence in the Madrid area, or; the pursuit of lawful business activities in the Madrid area, or; the pursuit of cultural leisure, and sport activities in the Madrid area, or; any other kind of direct or indirect presence that is generally accepted as legitimate for, and conducive to the welfare of, the Madrid area."

"The Government of the Region of Madrid has entrusted the Communications and Computer Agency of the Region of Madrid (ICM), the task of governing body for the management and running of the domain name “.madrid”."

Valid registrations will be confirmed via a statement of intent and proof of an administrative contact in the Madrid area. Enforcement will be a post-validation after the full launch of the TLD.[90]


25. .paris, The applicant is the Ville de Paris (City of Paris). Their definition of community largely matches with the above cities, such as .berlin, and registration policies also match other TLDs such as .madrid, wherein a statement of intent and an adminstrative contact in the Paris area are required for registration. After launch the validation process will be post-validation.[91]


26. .quebec, The applicant is PointQuébec Inc, which has been endorsed by the government of Québec and other cultural, technical, and economic instituions in the city. It has received "substantial financial support from the Québec government", and is a not-for profit organization. The organization will verify legitimate registations via statements of intent through a post-verification registration system.[92]


27. .scot, The applicant is Dot Scot Registry Limited. The international community of Scots is defined through: "birth or residence as Scottish; by ancestry as of Scots origin;businesses located in Scotland or registered in Scotland; organisations and their memberships whose stated remit is to celebrate or further the heritage, arts, music, languages, sports and culture of Scotland."

The applicant has the support of the UK and Scottish governments. Registration will be verified by a statement of intent and maintained through good-faith registration.[93]


28. .tirol, The applicant is punkt Tirol GmbH.

"Exclusively eligible to register a domain name under the top-level domain .TIROL is any natural person, legal person, organization or association of persons, if they can demonstrate an economic, cultural, touristical, historical, social or any other connection to the Austrian Federal State of Tirol...The applicant Punkt Tirol GmbH has entered into an agreement with the Federal State of Tirol to operate .TIROL under license by the state." Verification methods do not seem to be explicitly stated within the application.[94]


29. .wien, The applicant is punkt.wien GmbH, which has the requisite letter of support from the local government. "Exclusively eligible to register a domain name under the top-level domain .WIEN is any natural person, legal person, organization or association of persons, if they can demonstrate that they have an economic, cultural, touristical, historical, social or any other connection to the Austrian capital Wien (Vienna)." Registration will involved implicitly signing an agreement that affirms a legitimate connection to the city of Vienna (Wien) and intention to use the name in good-faith.[95]

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