Domain Pulse has launched its annual (well, for the second year running) Q&A series looking at the year in review, what 2020 might bring and what are the key concerns for domain name industry participants. First up we talk to EURid, manager of the .eu top level domain. EURid discusses their highlights and lowlights of 2019, what they’re looking forward to in 2020, whether a new round of new gTLD applications is really warranted and how they’d like to see the domain name industry focus on quality rather than quantity when it comes to talking about registration numbers.
Domain Pulse: What were the highlights, lowlights and challenges of 2019 in the domain name industry, both for you and/or the industry in general?
EURid: At our end, we completed the ten-year process to get the .eu in Greek delegated and launched our abuse prevention system for domain names that might be the source of possible abuses. Because of this feature and Brexit, we saw a shrinking of our portfolio, but we had foreseen it (mainly because of the Commission decision about UK holders of .eu domain names). At the industry level, we also witnessed a stabilisation of the market and heard a lot of registrar dissatisfaction about the most-recently launched TLDs.
DP: What are you looking forward to in 2020?
EURid: We are looking forward to promoting our IDN strings further and to work more on ensuring a trustworthy .eu environment.
DP: How have new gTLDs fared in 2019?
EURid: As we manage the .eu TLD and its variants in other scripts, we are not able to express any view on it apart from what we heard from our registrars that we reported above.
DP: What progress do you see on a new round of applications for new gTLDs in 2020?
EURid: We wonder if and whether there is the need for such a round. We see quite a few strings withdrawn, others that are struggling to survive in the market and others that offer one domain at zero cents to gain some registrations.
DP: What one thing would you like to see addressed or changed in the domain name industry?
EURid: I would say the domain name industry should work more on quality rather than quantity as this has been the ICANN and big players approach so far. We hear “a certain dot has 5 million registered domain names”, but we never hear how many of them are used positively to connect people and to help building a stronger Internet and connecting people.