Swift grabs domain names

April 2015


Artists, internet


Taylor Swift has bought the web domain names TaylorSwift.porn and TaylorSwift.adult. The addresses were part of a public sale by the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) of new domains. The non-profit group has expanded the number of generic top-level domains, or gTLDs, such as .com and .net in 2011. There were 22 four years ago but now there are nearly 550 with new ones released every month. ICANN is clearly aware of the negative repercussions of adding these domains and allowed trade mark owners and public figures to take advantage of the so-called “Sunrise Period” and register the domains before they become open to public purchase on June 1.
The Trademark Clearinghouse,  “a global repository for trade mark data” will verify trade mark data from multiple global regions and maintain a database with the verified trade mark records.  This verified data can be used to support ‘Trademark Claims’ and ‘Sunrise Services’, both of which are required for the new gTLDs.  The Trademark Clearinghouses’ ‘Sunrise Services’ allow trade mark holders an advance opportunity to register domain names which correspond to their marks before domain names are generally available to the public. The Trademark Clearinghouse service is not free.  Each trade mark which is registered with the Trademark Clearinghouse attracts a registration fee (generally US$ 150 for one year, US$ 435 for three years or US$ 725 for five years). For each registration, a trade mark owner can then register 10 labels/variations of the trade mark, with each additional mark costing US$ 1
Trade mark owner not using the Trademark Clearinghouse service can still  register the domain name at the end of the Sunset period.  After the Sunset period closes, the General Availability period opens.  However, the first seven days of General Availability comprise the Early Access Program. There is a fee for registering during this seven day period
Microsoft Office has registered Office.porn and Office.adult. Richard Branson and Stringfellows are other names to have bought .adult and .porn domains, according to ICANN.
In January Taylor Swift applied to trademark five phrases from her latest album 1989 in the U.S.: These were “Party like it’s 1989”, “this sick beat”, “cause we never go out of style”, “could show you incredible things” and “nice to meet you, where you been?”


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