'.co' indicates Colombia, not company, says government


The Council of State has determined that the Ministry of Communications is the competent authority to regulate the administration of Colombia's country-code top-level domain (ccTLD) '.co' because it is a public asset. Hence, the Universidad de los Andes may continue administering it until the ministry adopts appropriate regulations.

The ccTLD has been administered by the private organization since 1992, when the Internet Assigned Numbers Authority assigned the domain. However, last year the university caused an uproar when it opened a bidding process aimed at awarding the operation of, but not title to, the ccTLD to another entity (see Colombia could pose challenge to the '.com' web address). However, the Council of State stopped the bidding process, stating that the university was not in a position to change or define the conditions under which '.co' is administered.

For the time being, it seems that the university will continue administering the domain, but it may only register domains that have a connection to Colombia. It is not yet known when the Ministry of Communications will adopt regulations for the administration of '.co'.

Daniel Peña, Cavelier Abogados, Bogota

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