CSC Offers Strategic Advice for New Generic Top-Level Domains

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A “radical” change to the Internet calls for a wise approach by brand owners, says Corporation Service Company.

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This is a historic day for the Internet, and many companies are understandably concerned about whether applying for a new gTLD is the right thing to do.

In what observers are calling a “radical shake-up” of the Internet’s organizational structure, the Board of Directors of the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) approved the implementation of the New Generic Top-Level Domain (gTLD) Program on Monday, June 20, at its meeting in Singapore, which ends today.

The new ICANN initiative makes it possible for companies, nonprofits and other associations to obtain their own, branded domain name extensions. Applications for new gTLDs will be accepted beginning January 12, 2012.

“This is a historic day for the Internet, and many companies are understandably concerned about whether applying for a new gTLD is the right thing to do,” says Gretchen Olive, Director of Policy & Industry Affairs at Corporation Service Company® (CSC®). “Now that the program is in effect, it’s time for companies to decide whether or not to take part in it. They should also be aware of competitors’ or infringers’ plans to file industry-specific gTLD applications that could affect their businesses. Brand owners need a full understanding of the opportunities and threats posed by the new gTLDs in order to make the best decisions.”

As organizations ponder what the new program means for their brands, CSC, the industry leader in corporate domain name services, offers the following tips for deciding whether or not to pursue an extension of your own:

1.    Your online presence: If the Internet is a significant channel for your organization, having your own gTLD may give you more control over how people find you online and help increase traffic to your brands.

2.    Online security: If your organization faces challenges from phishing/pharming, counterfeiting, grey market distribution or online fraud issues like unauthorized solicitation of donations or difficulties policing online resellers of your products, a new gTLD may enable you to create a safe space for consumers where only authorized parties and products can be found and purchased.

3.    Branding opportunities: If you’re looking for ways to improve your online usability and build a comprehensive brand experience, you may want to consider a new gTLD. A new gTLD could help simplify complex URL strategies and dramatically reduce the number of clicks required for users to reach your content. In addition, a new gTLD may provide novel opportunities for online interaction, community-building or extension of your brand.

4.    Competitive landscape: Is your competition applying for a new gTLD? Desirable extensions will be in high demand and may touch off a bidding war. If you see a competitive advantage to owning a new gTLD, it may be best to apply now. The next application round could be another two to four years out.

5.    Expense: If you apply for and are awarded a new gTLD, be aware that you are signing up for a long-term operating commitment. In an era of shifting corporate strategies and shrinking budgets, this is a significant consideration for many organizations.

CSC can help clients prepare and submit applications for new gTLDs, monitor for infringement in this space, and set up and maintain their own gTLD. Our free white paper, “New gTLDs: What Should I Tell My Board?” offers an excellent starting point for organizations that are sorting through the complexities of the new gTLD program. To download your copy now, visit http://www.cscglobal.com/gtldwp.

About CSC
Corporation Service Company, a privately held service organization founded in 1899, provides domain portfolio strategy, management and recovery services for global brands; matter management, corporate compliance, and trustee services for companies and law firms worldwide; and due diligence and transactional services for the world’s largest financial institutions. An ICANN-accredited registrar since 1999 and a longtime advocate for intellectual property (IP) rights and their protection online, CSC is a trusted partner of more than half the 100 Best Global Brands (Interbrand®). A recent survey by World Trademark Review ranked CSC #1 in customer approval for domain management services. To learn more about CSC’s New gTLD services, visit http://www.cscglobal.com today.

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