IEDR loosens .ie domain requirements

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30 November 2017 | 0

IE Domain Registry (IEDR) is to begin the process of opening up the .ie domain namespace to enable citizens, clubs, communities, and businesses. Currently, to register a .ie domain name, an individual or business must prove a valid claim to the desired name and a tangible connection to the island of Ireland.

IEDR’s change to the registration process retains the requirement for registrants to prove their connection to Ireland, but drops the need to prove a valid claim to the name. Going forward, any individual or business with a provable connection to Ireland will be able to register any available .ie domain name on a first-come, first-served basis.

For example, for Irish businesses, particularly start-ups, the claim to a name requirement has proven a difficult administrative obstacle. Many new businesses are not registered with the CRO, may be VAT-exempt, and have no physical premises, meaning they also have no official documentation proving their business’s existence nor their claim to the business name.

The decision is the second change to the registration procedure in as many years. In 2016, it was decided to remove the exclusive right of local authorities to Irish place names, allowing local clubs, residents associations and other community organisations to register a .ie address with their local place name. Some 111 geographic names have been registered since that policy change was introduced.

David Curtin, chief executive of IEDR, said: “By simplifying the .ie registration process, it will be easier to get a preferred website address or e-mail address which will have a clear, identifiably Irish connection. More people, organisations, communities and businesses across Ireland, and those around the world with Irish heritage or Irish operations, will be able to reach out to the wider Internet community, communicate with their customers, and buy and sell online with e-commerce.

“In instances where .ie domain applicants believe another party has improperly registered a .ie address, or is using it for criminal or other illegal purposes, there are a number of mechanisms available for dispute resolution. These include the formal dispute resolution process independently operated by the World Intellectual Property Organisation, and supported by the legal registrant terms of service and the registration policies.

“These matters have been considered at great length by the PAC, and as such, it is currently considering an additional mechanism for a new ‘alternative dispute resolution process’ to handle disputes in a simpler, speedier manner.”

The new policy change is expected to come into force by March 2018.

TechCentral Reporters

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