Ireland’s ccTLD Manager Announces Slight Relaxation of Eligibility Rules In Bid To Boost Use

The Irish ccTLD .ie has some of the more restrictive eligibility rules in Europe, and hence has one of the lowest numbers of domains under management per capita. A slight relaxation of the rules, which will see applicants not having to show a “claim to the name” from March 2018, may change this. Slightly.

Currently, along with a “claim to the name”, .ie domain name registrants need to show they have a “connection to the island of Ireland” and to prove their identity. The changes come about following a consultation where IEDR put the change out to consultation, with the feedback being supportive.

IEDR, which is the manager of Ireland’s country code top level domain, says there are number of reasons why the rules are changing. They say they want to:

  • make it faster and easier for those with real Irish connections to get a .ie
  • grow .ie, especially with Irish Small Office/Home Office/Micro businesses
  • remove the ‘claim’ requirement, as applicants can’t prove future ‘claims’ (e.g. new start-up businesses who want a web presence before setting up a physical presence)
  • remove restrictions on domains that reflect a person’s name, nickname, pen name.

What won’t be changing is that registrants will need to have legitimate connections with the island of Ireland, either the Republic of Ireland or Northern Ireland, and each application for registration will be manually verified.

The change in policy follows the 10-step IE Policy Development Process with the multi-stakeholder Policy Advisory Committee formally recommended the introduction of this change to the IEDR Board of Directors, which approved the change in November 2017.

More information on the change to eligibility for .ie domain names can be found at: