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Block your trademark in .sex before October 1, 2015

The ICM Registry has announced that the sunrise period for the new top level .sex is now open. The top level is designed in particular for the so-called “adult entertainment industry”, ie for porn websites. More information can be found at http://nic.sex/.

If you are a trademark owner and if you have registered your trademark with the Trademark Clearing House (TMCH), you can block your trademark in .sex during Phase 1 until

1 October 2015.

After 1 October 2015, registration will be open in these phases:

Phase 2 (Sunrise B/domain matching): 05 October 2015 to 30 October 2015
During that period you can register (block) your domain name if you registered the same domain name under the toplevel .xxx.

Phase 3 (General availability): From 04 November 2015
As from that date registration is open to all.

Many of our clients have had their trademark registered with the TMCH or have blocked it in .xxx and will thereby be able to block the corresponding domain names in phase 1 and/or 2. Hereby the obvious advantage becomes available that you can eliminate the risk that other parties register your trademark as part of a .sex domain name when, after 04 November 2015, that option becomes available to everybody.

Pro et contra

It goes without saying that it may be extremely damaging if your trademarks are associated with porn websites. This mere risk may suffice to choose to register (block) the trademark as part of a .sex domain name so as to be able to control the content of the associated website.

On the other hand, a considerable cost may be involved if you have to block many domain names, and the risk of a third party getting the idea of registering the trademark as part of a .sex domain name is not equally high for everybody. If you have registered your trademark with the TMCH, you will be notified when/if other parties register the trademark as part of a .sex domain name, and you will have the option of reacting to it. However, at that point the damage may be done, and resources will have to be spent either on buying back the domain name or on commencing complaint proceedings. Either way, that is unfortunately a choice between cholera and the plague.

Please contact us if you would like to know more about .sex or domain name strategies or complaints in general.