back to article Nominet resurrects second-level namespace plan: 'Before you say no...'

Dot-UK registry Nominet has bounced back with another effort to bring second-level namespaces to life, after the Oxford-based company's previous proposal was largely greeted with indifference by Blighty businesses. Now the outfit is once again pushing to introduce a shorter suffix imbued with what it described as "the trust of …


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  1. TeamEvil

    Still don't see anything about giving first dibs at the .uk for those that own the already.

  2. Ragarath

    We are proposing a registration fee that is competitive with other gTLDs such as .com.

    Translates to: "we can gouge more money out of people to protect their brands."

    They could have done this many, many years ago but decided not to. Now the rest of the world offers TLDs for their country code they decide they can make money.

    I would have brought them years ago when my portfolio started. I actually actively looked at ways to register a second level domain on .uk but they were not on offer.

    And now they expect me to buy .uk to protect all my sites because they were too lazy to do it before.

    They wonder why people were not keen?

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      "We are proposing a registration fee that is competitive with other gTLDs such as .com"

      Current price for a about £4

      Current price for a .com: about £10

      Translation: "we want to increase our fees by 150%"

      But to ensure they remain a non-profit organisation, they'll have to pay their directors a lot more to compensate.

      1. Richard Cranium

        No it's much more than that...

        If I were to buy I'd need to register too to stop the guy down the road getting it to use in competition or to hold me ransom for a large transfer fee.

        That means going forward a domain name will cost £4 for plus another £10 for .uk

        If I already own (I don't!) I'd be a fool not to buy as soon as available so nominet's big win is that a significant chunk of the 10 million registrations will need to stump up another £10 p.a. for a defensive registration of the .uk equivalent.

        So that's up to £100 million extra income for nominet - but it's a not for profit company so why do they need that? I guess Leslie Cowley is struggling to get by on her meager £187k salary and £70k bonus.

        And don't forget that the registrars add their own margin to Nominet fees - Webfusion lists at £9.99 p.a. (and just fancy that, when I look at Nominet's annual report for 2012 I find "T Vollrath (Webfusion Ltd)" is a director of Nominet with a salary of £30k) So it's drinks all round guys!

  3. Richard Gadsden

    Why should I want a TLD to be "competitive"?

    How about "accurate"? I'd be quite content with paying slightly more ( is cheaper than .com) for accurate WHOIS, rolling out DNSSEC, IPv6 glue and making hijacking domains really difficult.

    I liked the old Nominet rule that reassigning a domain required you to fill in and post a form. It made it hard to steal .uk domains.

    I do see that they're giving first dibs to people who own /, which makes sense:

    "A ‘right of first refusal’ would give registrants of existing .uk domain names at the third level (e.g.,, etc) the opportunity to secure the corresponding registration at the second level. In the event of two competing claims, the oldest current, continuous registration would be given priority. The proposal is to run the right of first refusal for a 6 month period from launch."

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Why should I want a TLD to be "competitive"?

      "I liked the old Nominet rule that reassigning a domain required you to fill in and post a form. It made it hard to steal .uk domains."

      There's another consultation where they want to enable largest registrars to change registrant details/transfers at will, probably part of a scheme to give the large registrars lower pricing too so they can shut down the domain registration market to a few powerful players. This could enable transfers of late renewals to the registrar so they can charge high recovery fees. You need to argue against that one too.

      Lobby your domain registrar to vote for candidates calling for more transparency at Nominet in the upcoming non-exec elections 22nd of this month.

    2. jonathanb Silver badge

      Re: Why should I want a TLD to be "competitive"?

      I own [myname] and [myname] So I get first refusal on [myname].uk. Great. But why do I need it except to stop someone else getting it?

  4. Anonymous Custard Silver badge

    Nominet, however, is keen to bring in a new second level domains policy to "keep the namespace competitive alongside the introduction of over 1,000 new top level domains from 2014."

    Or to put it another way:

    Nominet, however, is keen to bring in a new second level domains policy to make sure that they get their cut from all the extra domains that companies will then have to buy up to stop cyber-squatting, click-jacking and deliberately placed brand confusion and phishing.

  5. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Answers to consultation

    If you answer the consultation, make sure to put something in the "more info" sections of the questions as last time, they ignored all answers that just ticked the yes/no boxes.

  6. Rich 2


    "We believe this is the right step to safeguard the long-term relevance of the .uk namespace in the face of unprecedented competition"

    Eh? So, if I want a UK domain name (because I live in the UK), I might consider getting an Australian one instead ...because it's cheaper? (I don't actually know if it is or not, but you get the point, I'm sure). Or may be a Norwegian domain is cooler? Obviously, I don't want a .com because the US gov will take it off me at a whim.

    But anyway, what IS this "competion" she talks about?

  7. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    We have changed the proposed method for validation and verification.

    Most likely empty pissing about.

    We have removed the proposed requirement for a ‘UK presence’ and replaced this with a proposed requirement to provide a UK address for service.

    A negative, if it allows non-UK entities with no more than a virtual/PO-box address.

    In addition the opportunity to validate and verify contact details would be available for all third level registrants.

    Most likely empty pissing about. If you're dodgy, you'll pass up the "opportunity".

    We have replaced the phases from the proposed release process with a revised release mechanism that prioritises existing .uk registrations in the current space. This removes the need for an auction to determine between competing rights.

    Sounds like you'll still need to either get in first or go through a dispute.

    We are proposing a registration fee that is competitive with other gTLDs such as .com; and

    The fee you pay through a tag-holding registrar is already significantly less than you'd pay if you went directly to Nominet.

    [w]e have removed the proposed requirement for mandatory DNSSEC, malware monitoring and the trustmark. We will now focus on developing a Security Road Map that improves security across the entire .uk namespace.

    We want more DNSSEC, not less.

  8. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    I can't see many people caring too much ... how about offer a .uk to any business that pays over £100m UK corporation tax and at least make sure we make money from the idea!

  9. Irongut


    They are ignoring the elephant in the room, no one want to have to pay double for their domains. I currently own 15 domain names, I am very happy with them and do not want to have to buy 15 identical .uk domain names just because Nominet want to make more money.

    What is all this supposed to achieve? (other than more money for Nominet) At what point are people confused by the current system? Users know that a UK company will probably have a domain name and may have a .com as well. Adding a .uk domain to the mix will confuse users and open up more chances for phishing, etc.

    Once more I will tell Nominet "No! No! No!"

    1. Spoonsinger

      Re: Once more I will tell Nominet "No! No! No!"

      It's a Monopoly - what do you expect them to do? (Hiring and firing "executives" from other non related backgrounds isn't going to pay for itself).

  10. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    wot no gb tld?

    Why just .UK - thought that was for UKRAINE?

    Let's have TLD's for






    and really CONFUSE the ROW

    1. Daniel B.

      Re: wot no gb tld?

      Political correctness made the UK get UK instead of GB, though I think it is still out there.

      Wales did push for a .cymru thingy, though populating that would make domains that look like .onion addresses or autogenerated botnet C&C domains.

  11. Jamie Kitson

    Current second-level domains

    Doesn't this just invite typo squatting on current second-level domains like, or even

    Has any other country done this?

    1. justincormack

      Re: Current second-level domains

      Yes quite a few. Germany used not to do second level for example.

  12. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    .UK short shelf life?

    If Scottish devolution happens I suspect Nominet (and a Scottish simulacrum) will launch shiny new .ENG and .SCO domains... and we'll need to re-register all our .UK domains all over again... twice.

    Wash rinse repeat?

    1. jonathanb Silver badge

      Re: .UK short shelf life?

      Scottish devolution happened many years ago. If Scottish independence happens, then Scotland will get a two letter country code, which probably won't begin with an "s" because they are pretty much all taken. Only .sf, .sp, .sq and .sw are available. The Scottish Gaelic name for Scotland is Alba, so maybe it could be .ab or .aa. It won't be .al because that is the code for Albania.

  13. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    I'm surprised they've actually managed to get these plans out - considering they had to sack their COO (who holds responsibility for corporate services + policy development) a mere fortnight ago, one would have thought they'd have had to take some time to re-organise before attempting this again.

  14. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    What a load of bollocks

    This is purely a revenue raising exercise. A competing commercial namespace for UK businessis the last thing required. Besides, by allocating exact match ..UK domains to existing owners all you are doing is causing a mirror effect of what is already here! All good names gone and you are left with exactly what you already left with.

    Why noy jsut leave as is and up the reg fee to a fiver a year. Double your profits and eveyone gets on with business as usual.


  15. J.G.Harston Silver badge

    "We believe this is the right step to completely destroy the whole point of having a hierarchial naming system"

    There, fixed it for you.

    Right, now I want to be able to dial a local number in Sheffield and get through to my aunt in Edinburgh.

    1. justincormack

      You can. You can have a VOIP number at any exchange you like. Or any country.

  16. J.G.Harston Silver badge

    "I do see that they're giving first dibs to people who own /, which makes sense:"

    So, who gets ? South Yorkshire Housing Association ( or Scottish Youth Hostels Association ( ? Who gets ? Stirling University (, Stirling Council ( Stirling Engineering ( ?

    There's a *point* in hierarchial naming systems. First people with a bullet in the back of the head come the revolution is all those fuckwits who dump all their files in one huuuuuuuuuuuuuge "My Documents" directory.

    1. Spoonsinger

      Re: all those fuckwits who dump all their files in one huuuuuuuuuuuuuge "My Documents" directory.

      In my experience they usually just dump all their files on the Desktop. (regardless of O/S - although TIFKAM seems to have got around that - which is probably why it isn't popular(*))

      (*) Yes I know there are other reasons.

  17. Anonymous Coward

    you missed an opportunity

    your subheading should have ended ""

  18. Dave, Portsmouth

    Can they not just copy everything from into .uk, run them in parallel for a few years, and we can phase out the .co bit? Obviously no more money for them, but one would hope they're not suggesting this purely to make more money!

  19. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Commercial Blackmail

    Dear sir/madam,

    As the owner of we are writing to inform you we have reserved your .uk equivalent. You have a period of 6 months to cough up the money. If, after this period you have not paid us our commercial ransom, will be made available to the general cyber squatter/phisher/browser highjacker

    1. graeme leggett

      Re: Commercial Blackmail

      A little more polite than...

      "nice domain name you've got there. Shame if anything happened to it. Like brand confusion."

    2. Richard Cranium

      Re: Commercial Blackmail

      As the owner of we are writing to inform you we have reserved your .uk equivalent. You have a period of 6 months to cough up the money... during this "sunrise" registration period for a substantial premium after which we'll let the first con man to come along buy it for a fraction of the price and you'll be well and truly screwed.

  20. Vince

    Fundamentally then it just means more companies adding another domain or 10 to the number they hold for brand protection and will make no significant difference.

    I think the main question is why does Nominet, the supposedly not for profit setup seem to be desperate to increase its revenue despite having plenty of surplus year after year??

  21. Andy Fletcher

    As a testament to the fact a .uk address has nothing to do with credibilty

    I happen to own one.

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