Beginning October 9, 2007, trademark owners may register .asia domain names that correspond to their registered trademarks. The .asia TLD (“Top Level Domain”) registry, operated by DotAsia Organisation Limited, is intended for individuals, businesses, and organizations operating within the Pan-Asia and Asia-Pacific regions (“AP”)1. To be eligible to register a .asia domain name, and meet the .asia Charter Eligibility Requirement (“CER”),2 at least one of the contacts associated with the domain registration must be an existing legal entity or person located or domiciled within the AP Region. The contact may be the registrant, administrative, technical or billing contact. Trademark owners are strongly encouraged to register .asia domain names during the early “Sunrise Registration” periods. Following is a brief overview of the procedures for the various phases of .asia domain name registrations established by the registry.

I. .Asia Early Sunrise Registration Procedures (October 9 – October 30, 2007)

The Sunrise Registration period is an exclusive registration period during which trademark owners may register desired .asia top-level domains that correspond to a registered trademark in an AP country. Only owners of a trademark that has been applied for on or before March 16, 2004 and is currently registered in an AP country may register domain names during this period, which is set to open on October 9, 2007 and run through October 30, 2007. Further, the trademark owner must be able to demonstrate continuous use of the mark. Trademark owners who wish to register .asia domain names during the Early Sunrise Registration period must provide the following information to an accredited .asia registrar:3

  • the trademark;
  • trademark registration number;
  • the trademark office that issued the registration;
  • date of trademark application filing (this date must be before March 16, 2004);
  • trademark registration date;
  • registered class of goods and/or services covered by the trademark registration.

II. .Asia General Sunrise Registration Procedures (November 13, 2007 – January 15, 2008)

A “General Sunrise” period for registration of .asia domain names will be available from November 13, 2007 through January 15, 2008 for trademark owners that have marks registered in an AP country on or before December 6, 2006. Use of a mark need not be demonstrated during this period. Trademark owners who wish to register .asia domain names during the General Sunrise Registration period must provide the following information to an accredited .asia registrar:

  • the trademark;
  • trademark registration number;
  • the trademark office that issued the registration;
  • date of trademark application filing (this date must be before December 6, 2006);
  • trademark registration date;
  • registered class of goods and/or services covered by the trademark registration.

III. .Asia Extended Protection Procedures (November 13, 2007 – January 15, 2008)

An “Extended Protection” period for registration of .asia domain names will be available from November 13, 2007 through January 15, 2008 for registered trademark holders to obtain domain names that combine their registered mark(s) with significant words from the class description for which the mark is registered.

IV. Allocation of .asia domain names

All applications received in any of the above phases will be deemed to have been filed at the same time within the period, and not on a first-come, first-served basis. Multiple applicants for the same domain name will be invited to bid for the domain name in an auction where each bidder will be able to observe the price of each bid placed by itself and competitors. The auction ends when no participant is willing to bid further within a reasonable period of time as determined by the registry or its auction agent. The domain name will be allocated to the winner of the auction.

V. .Asia Landrush Period expected to begin February 2008

During the "Landrush Period," residents of any of the member states of the AP Region may apply to register .asia domain names without submitting any evidence of prior rights in the name, provided they can meet the local presence requirement. The .asia domain is scheduled to go live in March 2008.

VI. Conclusion

Trademark owners are encouraged to register corresponding .asia domain names as soon as possible after commencement of the Sunrise Registration Period on October 9, 2007. Registration of .asia domain names during the Sunrise Registration Period will ensure that the domain names are not registered by cybersquatters or domain traffickers once the Landrush Period commences and will allow for avoidance of the extensive efforts that are often required to recover domain names.