The New gTLD Program is an initiative that was put in place by ICANN, the organization which regulates the Internet's naming and numbering systems, to expand the Internet namespace. Top-level domains (TLDs) are the portion of a domain name located to the right of the dot. Prior to the launch of the New gTLD Program, there were 22 Generic TLDs, the most well-known of which is .com. While the application period for operating a new gTLD closed in June 2012, it's still important to familiarize yourself with the applications and begin thinking about how these new gTLDs will affect your domain management policies and brand protection strategies. The effect the new gTLDs will have on domain portfolios and brand protection strategies is certain to be profound—providing both opportunities and risks for your brand. To safeguard your brand, you need to take three critical steps:
“MarkMonitor is trusted by 8 of the 10 most highly trafficked sites in the world.”
Evaluate your brand protection strategy in light of the expansion in Internet real estate
Reassess your defensive domain name registration strategy
Take advantage of the various Rights Protection Mechanisms like the Trademark Clearinghouse (TMCH) that ICANN has put in place.
Whether you find exciting new business opportunities in these new domain names or not, you will want your customers and prospects to find your site, rather than that of an impersonator. MarkMonitor offers several consultative services and resources such as the New gTLD Database, Trademark Clearinghouse Services, Top-Level Domain Advisory Services and white papers that can assist you with determining the best strategy to protect your brand.