The South-Trøndelag District Court in Trondheim ruled on 28 June that the initiative to use CO.NO for registering domain names at the third level can go ahead, but also found partially in favour of the .NO registry ruling that the domain name cannot be transferred to another party.
However the court ruled that Norid’s decision to put co.no on the list of forbidden names was justified and within the requirements of the domain regulation and that Norid is not liable to pay damages to Elineweb AS.
In the court case 11-156571TVI-STOR, the court ruled that the CO.NO initiative, founded by Elineweb AS, its registrant, and CoDNS, its Operator, fully complies with the .NO registration Policy and that Norid may not revoke the CO.NO domain name.
“We are glad that the Court recognises that our business model is in line with the .NO registration Policy and thus, that our customers’ registrations are secured.” said Sander Scholten, CoDNS B.V., General Manager.
Furthermore, this decision also required Norid to refute the false information they published on the .CO.NO initiative and to inform the public and more specifically all .NO accredited registrars of the legality of the initiative.
“Only one business day has passed since Norid informed its accredited registrars of the Court decision and we have already received several inquiries regarding the .CO.NO Registrar accreditation process. We are confident that this ruling will reassure all interested parties that the .CO.NO initiative is sustainable.” added Scholten.
The Court however, did not invalidate Norid’s placement of the .CO.NO domain name on its so-called “reserved list for future category second-level domains” eight years after its registration by Elineweb A.S.
The consequence of this decision is that the holder of the .CO.NO domain name is forbidden from transferring its ownership to any third party. “Our partnership with CoDNS B.V., being based on a long term relationship, this prohibition to transfer the domain co.no, has for sole consequence, if any, to publicly reinforce our partnership and commitment to the .CO.NO initiative.” commented Alexander Tvete, Elineweb A.S Managing Director.
.CO.NO Go Live to be held on July 4th, 2012
Now armed with this decision, the .CO.NO Operator is not willing to make .CO.NO prospective registrants and registrars wait any longer. The Operator is therefore currently reaching out to its network of more than 70 Registrars located all around the world to prepare for the general opening.
The Sunrise period for trademark holders, was successfully operated by Deloitte Belgium using the ClearingHouse for Intellectual Property, more than a year ago. All IP rights holders already hold the .CO.NO domain names which they are entitled to.
With the opening of .CO.NO registrations to the general public on a first come, first served basis, everyone will be entitled to secure their .CO.NO domain names without any requirement.
Additionally, all Landrush applications which were pending will now be activated and their holders will be able to benefit from their registrations as of today.
The Go Live will be held on 4 July 2012 at 10:00 am CET and any interested party will be able to apply for the registration of .CO.NO domain names via Europe Registry.