'.my' second-level domain launch enters second phase


MYNIC, the registry for the '.my' domain, has launched the second phase of its second-level domain name service.

The launch of the second-level domain names has been carried out in two phases. The first phase took place between November 1 2007 and December 31 2007. It offered a 'sunrise period' where priority was given to entities or individuals which had registered active third-level domain names and sought to register the corresponding second-level domain names. During the sunrise period, applicants had to ensure that the second-level domain names applied for were identical to the already registered third-level domain names. In addition, the number of second-level domain names registered by the applicant had to correspond with the number of registered third-level domain names.

With the launch of the second phase, applications for registration have been opened to the public. Applications shall be accepted on a first-come, first-served basis. To apply for registration, an applicant must either be a registered company in Malaysia or hold a Malaysian identity card. Foreigners must apply for registration through a Malaysian company and provide all the necessary documentation (eg, Form D, Form 24 and Form 49).

Pursuant to the MYNIC registration guidelines, the second-level domain names chosen must not be identical or confusingly similar to either a registered trademark or a business or company name in Malaysia. Moreover, registrants must not infringe any registered trademarks in registering the second-level domain names. An applicant may apply for registration of any number of second-level domain names during the second phase.

Further exclusions apply to the registration of domain names. For example, the use of country or state names, as well as religious-sensitive words, is excluded. Furthermore, words or parts of words that are offensive, scandalous, indecent, obscene or contrary to Malaysian norms shall not be registrable as second-level domain names.

The launch of the second-level domain names should encourage Malaysian entities and individuals to increase their business presence on the Internet, as well as protect their intellectual property and brand names. Nevertheless, the '.my' domain name may still appear foreign to consumers used to the more commonplace '.com.my' third-level domain names. It may thus take time before these new internet addresses gain in prominence and demand.

Joshinae Wong, Skrine, Kuala Lumpur

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