ICANN has closed its Sydney office Domain Incite has revealed, with staff there made redundant over the Christmas period. The office was originally established when Paul Twomey was CEO and president.
Another Domain Incite report says “the Independent Objector for ICANN’s new gTLD program has given a preliminary nod to applications for .sex, .gay, .wtf and six other potentially ‘controversial’ applied-for strings.”
There have been a number of applications for gTLDs withdrawn, and Doug Isenberg on his Isenberg On Domains blog notes the number has now grown to 13. The post notes the “list includes the first ‘dot brands’ to withdraw, including .caremore, .cialis and .hilton. In its application for .cialis, Eli Lilly had confessed that it ‘does not believe that there has been enough time or information available to fully analyze and evaluate all potential use case options.’”
One of the two applications for .swiss was also withdrawn following “an ‘early warning’ notice from ICANN’s Governmental Advisory Committee.”
“The Iranian government has filed late Early Warnings against 29 new gTLD applications, mostly on the basis that the applied-for strings are un-Islamic and ‘unethical,’” Domain Incite reports.
The report continues that “bids for .gay, .sex, .wine, .bet, .poker and others relating to sexuality, alcohol and gambling are ‘in conflict with ethical standards’ in Iran, according to the submissions.”
In Vietnam, a man that is well known in the country as the “domain name baron”, who has become wealthy buying and selling domain names, is being sued by Eurowindow, reports Vietnamnet Bridge. Nguyen Trong Khoa bought some .com domains including the “eurowindow” string and then offered to sell Eurowindow a set of four domains for $50,000. According to the report, a source has said “Eurowindow is considering denouncing Khoa to the Ministry of Public Security with the title of ‘blackmailing.’”
On the Domain Name Strategy blog, a blog from FairWinds Partners, there is an article about a man that “sold his last name to Headsets.com for $45,500 for the year.”
“On January 1, he will legally change his name to Jason Headsets.com, a move that he has documented in detail on his website (where he also explains that he will donate a portion of the proceeds to charity).”