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CIRA wants patent for registry “tag” system

Canada’s ccTLD administrator files patent application related to aspects of its Fury registry platform.

CIRA has applied for a patent related to its Fury registry management platform.

Canadian Internet Registration Authority, the group that manages Canada’s .CA domain name and has started offering registry services to other TLDs, has filed a patent application covering aspects of its Fury registry platform.

The organization filed a patent application (pdf) with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office for “Registry Domain Name Management”.

The idea is to create a centralized way for registries to add “tags” to domain names. These tags may affect how domain transactions (e.g., registrations) can be handled.

For example, a domain name might have a premium price tag. When a registrar uses EPP to try to register the domain, the tag info will be pulled from a database to notify the registrar of the price.

These tags could also be used to offer discounted pricing based on the registrar. They could even require certain domains to be registered as a bundle, such as close IDN variants.

Believe it or not, much of the data on premium domains is hard-coded by registries and sent to registrars for implementation. At least one registry sent a .pdf file to registrars that included their premium domain list and prices. (You can learn more about that in this podcast.)

With CIRA’s system, someone can easily apply characteristics to domain names. Instead of updating an Excel sheet with premium domain pricing, they can just change it in the system and then the registrars will receive the update information when they make an EPP call.

A registry could also change domain prices based on changes in demand. One thing that comes to mind is a registry adjusting prices on cryptocurrency-related terms as they became popular. It’s difficult to change prices on the fly with hard-coded systems or premiums handled at the registrar level.

Here’s a summary of some of the tag types outlined in the patent application:

Generally, Group tags are used to associate a number of domain names for organization purposes. Premium tags are used to override default prices by applying a price increase. Discount tags are used to override default prices by applying discounts. Block tags are used to restrict actions from being carried out with specific domain names. When a Registry assigns a domain name to a tag they can also fill out associated tagging information and characteristics that may include but not be limited to: a name of the tag, a pricing model of the tag, a registry event affecting the tag, registrars affected by the tag, domain names that will be affected by the tag, and a length of time that the tag applies. In assigning the domain names to a tag, specific information is required, for example a Group Tag require at least a name; a Block Tag requires a Name, an Event, a Registrar, a Time Period; and a Discount and Premium requires a Name, an Event, a Registrar, a Time Period and the Discount/Premium.

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