The European Union Intellectual Property Office (EUIPO) and EURid this week announced they are set to intensify their collaboration with a number of initiatives, with the main one being to allow start-ups, in particular, to obtain their trademark and .eu domain name as part of one process.
New .eu registrations jumped 15% in the first quarter of 2020 over the corresponding quarter in 2019 on the back of a 64% increase in registrations from Portugal and registrations related to the COVID-19 pandemic, according to EURid’s Q1 2020 Progress Report released this week.
EURid is warning of a website that is infringing on their trademarks, illegitimately ripping off their website even including the EURid announcement that they’re… ripping off their website.
The website, http://aim-search.info, is illegally using EURid’s trademark without authorisation and has copied the content and the lay-out of our official website. They even link to the legitimate EURid social media accounts.
EURid, the registry for .eu, .ею (Cyrillic) and .ευ (Greek) top-level domains, has said this constitutes infringement of their intellectual property rights and misleads consumers into believing that EURid is somehow associated with this website. EURid has taken legal action against its holder.
Following the agreement between EURid and both institutions appointed to rule on Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) proceedings for the .eu top-level domain (the WIPO Arbitration and Mediation Center and the Czech Arbitration Court), the .eu registry announced last week the fee for a basic .eu ADR procedure will remain discounted until 30 June 2020.
This means that the ADR fee per dispute complaint is as low as â¬100.
If you wish to dispute a .eu, .ÐµÑ or .ÎµÏ domain name registration, and believe that you have a prior right (within the EU or EEA) to that domain name (e.g. you hold a trademark, trade name, company name, family name, and so on) and that the current holder has registered or is using the domain name for speculative or abusive purposes, you may challenge its registration by initiating an Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) procedure.
A new set of rules for .eu came into being on 18 April which will be applicable from 13 October 2022, except for the article 20 that introduces eligibility to EU citizens residing in third countries, which should start applying as of six months after entering into force, that is, in October 2019. In the coming weeks EURid will inform all its stakeholders about the exact date when the new eligibility criteria apply.
The new rules have come about following a political agreement between the European Parliament and the Council on 5 December 2018 and are designed to support better quality and more innovative services on .eu.
From 13 October 2022 there will be a legal flexibility for the .eu domain to adapt to rapid market changes and allow modernisation of its governance structure. A new body, bringing together stakeholders from different backgrounds, will advise the Commission on the management of the top-level domain.
Article 20, which comes into being on 19 October 2019, will extend the right to register a .eu domain name to citizens of the European Union and the European Economic Area (EU/EEA) residing outside the EU. This was previously limited to citizens living in countries within the EU and EEA. It will also offer some comfort to some citizens of the EU/EEA who have registered .eu domain names and reside in the UK if Brexit, assuming it happens, is drawn out long enough.
The new Regulation aims to adapt the current rules to the fast-changing domain name industry in order to strengthen the link with the growing Digital Single Market which focusses on European values like multilingualism, privacy protection, and security.
In addition, EURid announced at the end of March the Service Concession Contract between themselves and the European Commission has been extended until 12 October 2022 to be in line with the new .eu Regulation enforcement.
The new Regulation on the implementation and functioning of the .eu TLD name is available here.
The internet is increasingly playing a part in the lives of Belgians with growing numbers enjoying the freedom it gives them, go online for entertainment and feel the internet is an essential part of their daily lives. But only 1 in 20 Belgians have ever registered a domain name.
This is all part of research conducted by InSites Consulting on behalf of DNS Belgium, the .be ccTLD registry, at the end of 2018. The research found trust is important for Belgian internet users, and .be domain names score high on that front.
When asked what were the most important factors when it comes to trusting a domain name, Belgians responded:
- Language of the domain name
- Extension of the domain name
- The brand of the domain name
- Length of the domain name.
When it came to trusting a website, an encrypted connection (https) was considered the most important, a .be domain name second and a company logo third.
When asked if theyâve ever registered at least one domain name, 5% of Belgians said they had while 95% said not. 60% understood the concept of domain names while one third (35%) said theyâd consider registering a domain name in the future, the remainder said they wouldnât.
For the top level domains Belgians register domain names in, 77% said their own country code top level domain .be, 30% said .com, 16% said .net and 13% said .eu. Following was their neighbour .nl (Netherlands – 8%), .org (7%), .fr (France – 4%), .brussels (2%), .london (1%) and others accounted for 9%.
When it comes to the reasons for registering a domain name, 43% of Belgians said for a website, 40% for website and email and 6% just email.
It also appears Belgians are registering domain names sooner in the process of developing a business or idea with 42% saying they registered a domain name âdirectly at the time of the ideaâ compared to 23% in 2017, 11% âwhen the business is launchedâ (11% in 2017) and 23% after the start (30% in 2017).
Awareness was highest with .be and .com, with both scoring awareness among over 90% of Belgians (94% and 92% respectively) while .vlaanderen and .brussels scored 27% and 19% respectively.
Belgians said they valued the freedom and entertainment the internet offered them with 70% saying they loved the freedom the internet gives them (up from 59% in 2017), 68% said they go online at home for entertainment (57% in 2017) and 67% said they âfeel the internet is an essential part of their daily livesâ (47% in 2017).
Belgians say they surf safely online with almost two thirds (64%) saying they ânever surf to untrustworthy sitesâ while half (50%) âare concerned with safe internet useâ and a quarter (25%) âare aware of the latest online security toolsâ.
There were 171,667 new .eu and .ею domain name registrations in the fourth quarter of 2018, but despite this growth, total domains under management decreased from 3,747,879 as of 31 October to 3,684,750 at 31 December according to EURid's Q4 2018 Progress Report released last week.
Portugal, Norway and Cyprus, as in the third quarter of 2018, were again the countries with the highest growth with 13.2%, 9.1% and 4.9% respectively for the fourth quarter (11.0%, 9.9% and 10.1% respectively for Q3), according to the report [pdf].
Annually, the countries with the top growth to the end of December were Cyprus (46.0%), Portugal (35.6%) and Romania (34.0%).
Leading the countries with the biggest declines was the United Kingdom largely if not entirely due to Brexit and eligibility uncertainty with a 24.1% decline for year and 11.8% for the quarter taking total registrations for the UK to 240,887, down from 317,286 at the end of December 2017.
Another reason for the decline is EURid’s ramped up efforts towards tackling domain name abuse within .eu, deleting over 36,000 suspended domain names in October alone.
The top ten countries for .eu registrations were Germany with 989,432 registrations, down 0.6% for the quarter, followed by Netherlands (474,697 and down 5.5%), France (330,323 and down 1.9%), Italy (267,465 and up 1.1%), Poland (265,571 and up 1.1%), UK (240,887 and down 11.8%), Czech Republic (156,868 and up 0.7%), Austria (153,939 and down 4.8%), Belgium (141,343 and up 0.9%) and Spain (116,985 and up 1.0%).
The average renewal rate for the 2 top level domains was 77%, up 3% since Q3.
A major development in the fourth quarter was the unveiling of the 2018 .eu Web Awards winners. Overall, the nomination and voting period for the 5th iteration of the .eu Web Awards tallied over 130 nominees with more than 9,500 votes. The finalists attended the gala on 21 November 2018, where the winners were announced.
Another meaningful development from the quarter was EURid’s continued participation in CodeWeek. Aiming to make a beneficial impact on today’s youth, EURid built upon last year’s efforts with even more workshops and interactive sessions for children to take part in, all in an effort to teach them the fundamentals of coding and programming.
The full report is available from:
Citizens of the European Union no matter where they reside in the world will be able to register .eu domain names in 2019, according to new rules announced on 5 December following an agreement by the European Parliament, the Council and the European Commission.
Currently any person resident or business established in the EU, Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway can register a domain name for the European Union’s top level domain (TLD). The new rules will expand the eligibility criteria surrounding the .eu TLD and will also allow non-European Union citizens residing in the EU to register .eu domain names.
Negotiators agreed on the reform of the .eu TLD to adapt its current rules to the fast-changing domain name market in order to strengthen its link with the growing Digital Single Market, which focusses on European values like multilingualism, privacy protection and security.
The deal will now be put to the Industry, Research and Energy Committee and plenary for approval as well as the Council. The Regulation will enter into force in 20 days after its publication in the Official Journal. The Regulation shall apply from 13 October 2022 except for the provisions on who may register a .eu TLD. These provisions shall apply from six months after the entry into force of this Regulation.
The reforms have been framed by the European Parliament as being “necessary since much has changed since the first .eu top-level domain (TLDs) was used for the first time 13 years ago. The rapid evolution of the TLDs market and the digital landscape in general require a more flexible regulatory environment.”
There are also 2 changes to improve .eu governance. The first is the establishment of an advisory “Multistakeholder Council” that will be composed of representatives drawn by the European Commission from the private sector, the technical community, Member States, civil society and academia. These will assist and advise the Commission on the correct implementation of the Regulation and on the management of the .eu domain name.
The second is new supervisory powers will be given to the Commission vis-à-vis the Registry. With the new Regulation, the Commission will be able to better supervise the organisation, administration and management of the .eu TLD and verify the Registry’s compliance with the Regulation.
“I am pleased that the agreement strengthens rules on transparency, fairness and accountability and in particular, I am delighted that we have successfully strengthened provisions securing the principle of Rule of Law,” said rapporteur Fredrick Federley (ALDE, Sweden).
The changes are also a response to Brexit with Britain set to leave the EU in 2019, although this isn’t certain. With Britain leaving the EU, all .eu registrants residing in the UK were set to lose their domain name. Now at least any EU citizen residing in Britain will get to keep their domain name.
.eu is currently managed by EURid, a private, independent, non-profit organisation that has operated the .eu under contract to the Commission since 2003.
To assist their registrars comply with the European Unionâs General Data Protection Regulation, SIDN, the .nl ccTLD manager, has set up a Privacy Portal and a Legal Help Desk. SIDN acknowledges that for registrars, bringing their operations into line with the GDPR — and making sure they stay that way — can be a challenge.
In a blog post on the SIDN website by RA CEO Margreth Verhulst and SIDN’s Key Account Manager Sebastiaan Assink discuss the Privacy Portal and Legal Help Desk now available to registrars.
âAt the start of the year, SIDN organised a webinar on the implications of the GDPR for domain name registration. Participants were asked whether they had set up a data processing register, as required under the new legislation. And no fewer than 66 per cent of the registrars responded by saying that they hadn’t yet set one up. A broadly similar picture emerged when the RA surveyed its members to find out how many were GDPR-compliant. From the survey feedback, it was also clear that registrars would welcome support bringing their activities into line with the directive. The RA and SIDN therefore linked up with the ICTRecht legal consultancy to create the Privacy Portal, which opened for business on 27 September 2018. The Portal is intended to advise registrars on recording and protecting sensitive information and other privacy-related issues. “The Privacy Portal offers registrars free guidance on all aspects of privacy management,” explains Sebastiaan. “You can get answers to legal questions, or help with data processing agreements and other documents.” Dozens of registrars have already turned to the Portal for assistance.
A registrarâs first contact the Privacy Portal sees them being asked a few general questions. Answers are used to build up a profile and then a customised account can be established. Through the account, tailored advice is made available and appropriate measures are suggested. Facilities are also available for organising your enquiries and documents. “The intake privacy scan provides an immediate impression of what you’ve got under control and what still needs attention,” adds Margreth.
âThe Portal also features a tool that can be used to set up and maintain a data processing register, another of the GDPR’s new requirements. There’s a privacy statement generator as well, and a utility for checking the adequacy of your technical data protection measures. Another feature of the Privacy Portal is its data breach registration functionality, which you can use to comply with the GDPR’s requirement that details of all breaches must be recorded. Finally, there’s a tool for generating appropriate data processing agreements to regulate your relationships with any data processors that handle data on your behalf. In other words, the Privacy Portal offers all kinds of assistance with GDPR-compliance.â
“Registrars process a great deal of personal data and cooperate with other actors, including suppliers and partners. They collect registrants’ personal details, for example, and forward the information to us on the registrants’ behalf. That’s how a domain name is registered. Naturally, it’s primarily the registrars’ responsibility to make sure that their data processing complies with the law. However, it’s also very much in our interests to see that registration data is processed and exchanged securely,” continues Sebastiaan. As Margreth points out, registrars have a lot on their plates, even without the GDPR. “Their core business is domain name registration, and compliance with the many rules and regulations that apply to the industry sometimes gets sidelined. So the Portal has been created with the aim of relieving some of the burden and making compliance easier for registrars. For any registrar who sees GDPR compliance as a dauntingly high mountain, the Privacy Portal will act like a Sherpa. You’ve still got to get up the mountain yourself, but the Portal is there to shoulder some of the load.”
âThe Privacy Portal is just one of the ways that the RA and SIDN are working together to support and invest in the registrar community. It is a spin-off from the Legal Help Desk opened earlier in the year. Via the Help Desk, all 1250 or so .nl registrars can get free legal advice regarding issues involving contracts, ICT, terms and conditions and the like. Questions are simply submitted to the Help Desk using a standard form. Another product of cooperation between SIDN and the RA is the SIDN Academy.â
“So far, we’ve run three SIDN Academy sessions for registrars. The one-day sessions are intended for sharing knowledge on particular topics,â said Assink. âThe first round of sessions was devoted to e-mail security, for example.”
Looking forward, the post notes Margreth and Sebastiaan have no preconceptions about how the Help Desk and Portal should develop from here. Both are really still pilot services. “We’ll evaluate the situation after twelve months,” says Margreth. “The future direction of the projects will depend on how registrars use these facilities in practice. A positive response and high levels of use will encourage us to continue and extend the services.”
The full version of this post originally appeared on the SIDN website here. SIDN is the country code top level domain (ccTLD) manager for .nl (Netherlands).
Brazilâs ccTLD manager, NIC.br, announced [Portuguese only] Monday theyâve reached the 4 million registrations mark after âmore than 25 years of flawless operationâ.
There are over 120 second level domains under which .br domain names can be registered from blog.br and wiki.br for individuals to eng.br and adv.br for liberal professionals, tv.br and tur.br for legal persons, rio.br, sampa.br and curitiba.br for cities those reserved for specific purposes such as gov.br, jus.br, b.br and org.br among others. Some of these have as few as 10 registrations, while the largest, com.br has 3,645,125 accounting for 91.2% of all registrations.
According to the latest Verisign Domain Name Industry Brief, .br is the seventh largest country code top level domain (ccTLD). Verisign already had .br at 4 million domain name registrations at the end of 30 June, probably through rounding, up in this case, to the nearest hundred thousand. Chinaâs ccTLD was the largest with 22.7 million followed by Tokelauâs free .tk (21.5m), Germanyâs .de (16.3m), the United Kingdomâs .uk (12.0m), Russiaâs .ru (5.9m), the Netherlandsâ .nl (5.8m). Following .br is the European Unionâs .eu (3.8m), Franceâs .fr (3.2m) and rounding out the top 10 is Italyâs .it (3.1m).
Revenues from .br registrations allow NIC.br to, in addition to providing and maintaining the infrastructure behind .br, invest in a series of actions and projects that generate benefits and improvements to the internet infrastructure in Brazil. These include the operation of internet traffic exchange points, which promote the interconnection of networks that form the Internet in Brazil, reducing distances and costs; the handling security incidents and tracking internet statistics.
Nic.br notes that other advantages of registering .br domain names include additional security features, such as token and encryption, that strengthen both the accounts of Registro.br users, and their respective domains. There is another recent feature: a redirection feature that lets you point a .br domain to any URL, whether it’s on a website or the preferred channel on social networks, keeping identities and active tags on the Internet permanently. Servers distributed by Brazil and other regions of the world guarantee speed and reliability in the resolution of .br and a team exclusively dedicated to meet and assist users in their doubts complete the description.