SWITCH, the registry for the .li and .ch ccTLDs, is withdrawing the option for .li (the ccTLD for Liechtenstein) registrants to register .li domain names with them directly as of 14 February 2013. The move means that registrants will need to transfer their .li domain names as of this date to its accredited registrars, or as it calls them, “Partners.”
Up until now, it has been possible to register .li domain names directly with SWITCH or with one of more than 60 recognised Partners of SWITCH. The change has no impact on .ch (Switzerland) domains. Whether any similar change occurs to .ch domains is in the hands of OFCOM and the Swiss legislator. However SWITCH note they are not aware of any plans in this respect.
The SWITCH Foundation has taken the decision to discontinue its direct customer business with .li domain names. The current model with SWITCH as a registry and provider is no longer appropriate for the market the organisation believes.
“SWITCH has successfully built up the direct customer market over the past eight years. And more than 60 recognised Partners of SWITCH now ensure properly functioning competition. SWITCH is thus withdrawing from this market,” adds Andreas Dudler, managing director of SWITCH. This move has been coordinated with the Liechtenstein Office of Communication.
Leading up to the change, all registrants of .li domains that use SWITCH as their registrar will be informed of the change in writing and will be invited to transfer their domain names to a partner of their choice by 13 February 2013. If customers fail to do anything, their .li domain names will be automatically transferred to switchplus on 14 February 2013. switchplus is a recognised Partner and subsidiary of SWITCH. A subsequent transfer to a different Partner is possible at any time. SWITCH is making sure that all customers are able to select a new service provider and is ensuring the interruption-free operation of .li domain names.
SWITCH is continuing to act as the registry on behalf of the Office of Communication of the Principality of Liechtenstein and will ensure that .li domain names operate reliably and are available round the clock all over the world. SWITCH will additionally be supporting the more than 60 recognised Partners.
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