In what the .eu registry EURid is saying is the “biggest change yet” for the European ccTLD, citizens of European Union countries no matter where they live in the world will become eligible to register their very own .eu domain names from 19 October.
.eu is the eighth largest country code top-level domain and, as of October 2019, there were more than 3.6 million registrations spread out across Europe. Striving to meet the needs of an ever-changing digital environment was the impetus for changing the eligibility criteria for registering.eu domain names.
With around 12 million Europeans living in the US, Canada and Australia alone – not to mention the rest of the world – EURid’s hoping to provide these individuals, living far from their native lands, with a personal online platform through which they can share their lives with families and friends back home.
.eu has been having a challenging time of late with the likelihood of Brexit hitting registrations hard. Assuming Britain leaves the European Union, British registrants without an office for their business in the EU or individuals without EU citizenship will lose their eligibility. While Britons, both in the UK and around the world will be eligible to register .eu domains under the revised eligibility rules, they will lose this right if the UK leaves the European Union.
In the 12 months from 30 June 2018 to 30 June 2019, .eu registrations to British registrants dropped from 304,133 to 162,287 while total registrations dropped from 3,790,450 to 3,602,573.
EURid says registering a .eu domain name for a blog, travel diary or personal business will be just like a European passport on the internet, showcasing one’s identity while being reliable, trustworthy and secure. With a .eu domain, individual and consumer rights will be brought under the aegis of European standards and regulations.
“We are excited to be able to extend the registration criteria to EU citizens around the world,” said Marc Van Wesemael, EURid’s CEO. “The .eu domain is now closer to your ambitions, achievements and dreams. It is the bridge connecting you to your friends and family – even if you live outside the EU. It will always show your roots, your outlook, and your cultural values.”