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VeriSign Plans to Release 1 and 2 Character .Net Domains

.Net registry asks for permission to release short domain names.

VeriSign has asked ICANN (pdf) to allow it to release one and two character .net domain names.

In its proposal, VeriSign says it will auction the domain names in an English style auction with no end date. The auctions will continue until no further bids are received for a specific period of time.

Once won at auction, these domains will act basically like any other .net domain names, with an important caveat: if it expires and goes to pending delete, VeriSign won’t let the domains drop. Instead it will re-auction the domain name and keep the proceeds.

VeriSign says it will use the revenue from the auctions to promote general awareness of .net.

Like in other Verisign proposals, the company is starting with .net instead of .com to test the waters. In its request for one and two character .net domains, VeriSign says a release of one and two character .com domains would be handled differently than for .net and proceeds from that would be used for the “benefit of the general Internet community”.

Some one and two character .net domain names, including q.net, were registered prior to current restrictions and have been grandfathered.

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  1. Cartoonz

    Interesting… but Verisign does not OWN those single character .net names

    IANA does. Even thought ICANN is contracted to RUN IANA, the NTIA technically owns it, making this move by Verislime a complete robbery.

  2. Chip

    This is a mistake. VeriSign should not play in the auction game. They need to keep their names and nose out of the news and retail/marketing space because the proceeds will be paltry–even if it is in the millions–compared with the s-storm it can provoke. Should they really put themselves out there, under scrutiny, for this? I think not.

  3. George Kirikos

    The desire by VeriSign to not let expired/deleting names drop naturally (to be available to anyone at reg-fee) was what caused the WLS/CLS debate, and the ensuing CFIT antitrust lawsuit.

  4. gpmgroup


    What’s are the current plans for expiring domains from new gTLDs is the plan to allow Registries to (re-)auction them?

    Or hasn’t anyone thought that far ahead?

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