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Sep 201122
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ICANN Approves New Generic Top-Level Domain Names, Including The XXX Domain

ICANN’s Board of Directors has approved a plan to allow an increase in the number of internet address endings, otherwise known as generic top-level domain names (gTLDs).  Currently 22 gTLDs exist, with .com being the most utilized.  However, internet address names will soon be able to end with almost any word in any language, offering organizations around the world the opportunity to market their brand, products, community or cause in new and innovative ways.  Under the plan, new gTLD applications will be accepted starting on January 12, 2012. 

The most infamous of these new gTLDs, which is already set to be granted to the ICM Registry, is the gTLD .xxx.  In conjunction with the issuance of this gTLD, for a limited period, brand owners will be able to have their registered marks blocked for at least 10 years and possibly longer from the xxx domain. 

Attorneys at Woodard, Emhardt can assist in blocking registered marks from use in the xxx domain.  The deadline for submitting a request for blocking a mark is October 28, 2011.  Once the window for blocking a domain based upon a registered mark has expired, registration will be opened to all others on a first come first serve basis, and once a domain is registered, it will undoubtedly be much more expensive to stop. 

Please contact us for more information regarding the xxx domain and/or if you are interested in proactively blocking your registered marks from potential derogatory use in that domain.