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October 2, 2012

New Chinese Top IDN Level Domains open for registration

The Chinese registry entity (CNNIC) has launched a new IDN (Internationalized domain name) type and will, within short, modify its current IDN rules. The changes include two new top level domains, i.e. China written in traditional Chinese and simplified Chinese, as well as new rules regarding the registration process for all Chinese IDNs. 

The new top level domains, .中國 (China in traditional Chinese) and .中国 (China in simplified Chinese) will be open for registration during two sunrise periods, see below. When registering, the domain name will be: BRAND.中國 and BRAND.中国. Registering one of the new domains means that the other will be automatically registered under the identical name. 

Two sunrise periods

The first sunrise period, for names that match a registered trademark (wordmarks registered either in or outside China), is open until October 14 on a first-come-first-served basis, and a three-year term applies. The second period, from October 15th to October 22nd, is open for current .cn domains on a first-come-first-served basis, and a three-year term applies. It is important to note that whatever details shown on the whois record of the current .cn equivalent registration will be automatically used in the new registration. If the records are not correct, it is important to update the current .cn equivalent registration first.

New rules for registration

The current rules for registration of IDN will also change. Today the rules state that, when an IDN is registered with CNNIC (the Chinese registry), the company is automatically awarded all six of the IDN domains the .cn. registry offers in one unit. With the new set of rules this is changed, and the six IDN are divided into two groups, consisting of two and four domains, respectively, which will be charged for separately.

Recommendation

Zacco recommend all our clients to register their key brands and domains in the two new IDNs to avoid the risk of having them registered by a third party. We also recommend you to look into if and how your trademarks are affected by the legal changes.  As the domain registration process in China is rather complex and time consuming since the language used is Chinese, we also recommend you to act as soon as possible if you are planning to register.

For more information and questions on domain names you may consult:

Denmark: Lone Prehn

Germany: Nils Köster

Netherlands: Remy Meeuwse

Norway: Anne Wildeng

Sweden: Isaac Keren

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