.XXX Gold Rush: Debbie Does Domain Names

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As branding extends to URL with dot-branding now permitted, sexually explicit content providers are the most obvious purchasers banging at the door of ICM Registry to pay for new domain names, but more conventional brands are also looking ahead to see what’s behind the door.

EWeek reports that ICM has extended the period that companies can buy .xxx domain names from 30 days to 50 days in order to deal with the number of interested parties. In its pre-reservation period, ICM received more than 900,000 “expressions of interest,” eWeek notes. The initial registration period for existing brands, entitled Sunrise, will now run from Sept. 7 to Oct. 28 of this year. Then other companies can begin buying in on whatever domain names remain.

Brand managers that aren’t in the porn world “are rushing to register .xxx domains …  as the deadline for safeguarding their trademarks within the .xxx registry draws near,” eWeek notes.[more]

“We believe the Sunrise period offers businesses a comprehensive rights protection mechanism where they can protect their brands and trademarks,” said Stuart Lawley, CEO of ICM Registry, to eWeek. “We are advising businesses to either opt-in or opt-out and want to give them the best opportunity to do so at the launch of our new TLD. Given the high level of interest in the domain, we see that many businesses wish to be proactive in avoiding any brand conflicts.”

Plus, ICM is offering a one-time fee in the Sunrise period that “will ensure that their brand is never used within the .xxx registry,” eWeek notes.

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