No surprise: .cn falls.
It should really come as no surprise. As I predicted a couple months ago, China’s crackdown on the .cn domain name has led to a precipitous drop in the number of registered .cn domain names.
Data from HosterStats.com shows that the registered base of .cn domain names has dropped 39% in the first four months of the year, from 13,459,133 at the end of 2009 to just 8,254,681 at the end of April 2010.
The drop is due to a number of changes by China in how the .cn domain is administered. Primarily this is a crackdown on ownership, requiring each registrant to provide significant documentation in order to retain their .cn domain. The domain was even shut to new registrations by non-Chinese registrars for awhile. The changes caused big registrars, including GoDaddy, to drop the domain.
Another factor leading to the decline is the end of promotional pricing. For a while .cn was available for 1 yuan. This low price led to a lot of the problems that caused China to crack down on how the domain was being used.
HosterStats.com points out that .Cn has now fallen to the third largest ccTLD behind .de and now .uk.