Web.com formally announced .web application.
Web.com, parent company of Network Solutions and Register.com, formally announced its bid for the .web top level domain today.
Of course, we’ve known about the company’s plans since at least October of last year. The company has been taking pre-reservations on its web site. The company also applied for a trademark on .web (that will be rejected) and said it’s been using it in commerce since last June.
I suspect ICANN may receive more applications for .web that any other top level domain. Web.com certainly knows it has a fight on its hand. It has posted .web pre-reservation terms that suggest it has superior rights to anyone else wishing to apply for the domain:
Since the “.WEB” TLD is obviously very similar to the Web.com trade name, trademarks, and the character string associated with the main Web.com web address, www.web.com, it is clear that Web.com should be the company to operate and administer the .WEB™ domain registry and this is a role that Web.com expects to assume and looks forward to doing so. Moreover, the issuance of .WEB™ to anyone other than Web.com would not only infringe on the trademark rights in Web.com, but the use of .WEB™ by anyone other than Web.com would mislead and confuse consumers into thinking that any website with the .web suffix was associated with or sponsored by Web.com. Therefore, Web.com has taken steps to secure the necessary approvals to operate and administer the .WEB™ domain name registry and remains committed to aggressively continue to pursue such approvals.
Language in the company’s press release is slightly less direct:
We believe we possess the natural platform from which to successfully market the new .WEB top level domain since we are the sole owner of the Web.com trademark as issued by the U.S. Patent and Trademark office,” Brown continued. “With the resources of a nearly $500 million company and the inherent marketing advantage of the Web.com name, we believe we have the best opportunity to initiate and accelerate .WEB’s adoption as a universally understood and accepted top level domain.
Somehow I don’t think these claims will hold up with ICANN.