Nominet has launched a consultation on second-level domain registration in .uk, after an earlier consultation revealed that there was little appetite for the ‘direct.uk’ proposal.
Currently, websites operators can only register third-level .uk domains such as ‘nominet.org.uk’. Nominet wants to change this by allowing registration of domains at the second-level, e.g. ‘nominet.uk’.
The revised proposals abandon some of the controversial elements in the original consultation, such as mandatory DNSSEC and malware monitoring.
We listened to the extensive feedback on the initial consultation and the revised proposal is significantly different as a result. We believe this is the right step to safeguard the long-term relevance of the .uk namespace in the face of unprecedented competition.
— Lesley Cowley, Nominet CEO, press release
Concerns over pricing have been addressed, with Nominet committing to “competitive price point, with a proposed wholesale fee of £5.50 for one year or £4.50 per year for multi-year registrations”.
Nominet also proposes to give existing domain registrants a right of first refusal for equivalent domains at the second-level, at a reduced fee.
Certain domains are to be reserved for the use of specified public authorities, corresponding to existing registrations within .gov.uk. Most of these are likely to prove uncontroversial, with the possible exception of .food.uk (for the Food Standards Agency) and independent.uk (which corresponds to a namespace used by temporary, independent public authorities and public enquiries, but which also corresponds to the domain used by the Independent newspaper).
Nevertheless, a company with a large portfolio of domains might still face significant costs if it wishes to register the equivalent second-level domains.
The consultation closes on 23 September 2013. For more information, visit: www.nominet.org.uk/SLDconsultation