Nominet Gives Second Level .UK Domains Another Less Complicated Whirl

Nominet logoIt died a slow death with the first proposal, but Nominet is having another stab at allowing registrations for second level for .uk domain names, aiming them at UK-based businesses and people.

In the proposal announced today, Nominet unveiled a new programme that includes:

  • a revised proposal for opening up registrations at the second level of .uk will form the basis of a second direct.uk consultation launching in July
  • a commitment to enhance security across the namespace
  • a consultation to launch later this week on a new Registrar Agreement which recognises the part that all registrars can play in raising standards, and rewards those that do
  • proposed changes to governance, aimed at putting in place an improved Board structure for the long-term, will be put to the membership vote at this year’s AGM.

In its new consultation on second level registrations, the key elements Nominet is proposing are:

  • enhanced checks on data supplied for all registrations
  • requirement to have a UK address for service
  • right of first refusal – giving registrants of existing .uk domain names at the third level e.g .co.uk, .me.uk and .org.uk etc the right of first refusal to secure the corresponding registration at the second level. In the event of two competing claims, the oldest current registration would be given priority
  • a commitment to offering services to improve security across the whole namespace
  • a competitive price point– with a per wholesale domain annual registration fee of around £5 proposed.

The original proposal in 2012 included more secure, but also significantly more expensive, domain names. But it was not well received by stakeholders so the process was shelved.

In the feedback Nominet received in its 2012 consultation, the feedback received said that while enhanced security features were desirable and should be promoted, this should not be mandatory, or restricted to one product. The new proposal will see all security options available to all domain names under Nominet’s management.

More information on the new round of consultation will be available later this week with the consultation process closing at the end of September 2013.