Saturday, September 10, 2011

ICM Launches .XXX Sunrise Registrations

ICM Registry launched the Sunrise A registration of .XXX domain names that will be open to those in the adult entertainment industry and wil run for 52 days until 28 October, 2011. Sunrise B, which will be running concurrently with Sunrise A will be targeted at major business brands outside the adult entertainment industry, those engaged in "normal" operations like airlines, hotels etc and would like to protect their brands from being used to host adult content. MTN can hence register mtn.xxx just to deny a cybersquatter the opportunity of employing the domain name for some unsavory use.

But protecting your brands won't be a stroll in the park. Companies will pay hundreds of dollars for these defensive registrations, GoDaddy for example will be charging  a $209.99 one-time, non-refundable fee. The list of .XXX ICANN-accredited registrars is available on icmregistry.com website. 

For those with no trademarks, a "landrush" period will begin on Nov 8, 2011 but it's limited to those in the adult entertainment industry and will be  running for 18 days. The domains will enter General Availability, where anyone can register .xxx domains on a first come first served basis, on December 6th. So it's still a long way off, some 3 months away.


"The process is designed to respect existing brands and “grandfathers” domains without the risk of losing a domain based on a first-come, first-served launch process that’s common with new top-level domains." stated ICM in a Press Release.

Kenya is the only African country to have expressed an interest in blocking .XXX as it will "corrupt its youth", a misinformed decision indeed given that Kenyans already access a good amount of adult content(porn) via existing websites in the .com, .net, .org etc namespaces,. A quick look at Alexa rank will confirm that.

Those this has been expressed verbally and on Internet fora, no official communication has been given from Kenya's Ministry of ICT so we assume that no consensus was reached on this amongst policy makers in the country and  come December 6th, I will be able to register my .XXX domain name.