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NOMINET the registry for the .UK domain name space announced that it has changed its rules for domain registration and will allow the release of 1 character, 2 letter and other previously reserved domains.  Full details of the process to release these domain have not yet been published, but Safenames will continue to follow the developments of this announcement and will provided updates as they become available.

The initial indication is that NOMINET will make every effort to ensure an orderly and fair release and will respect any organization or individual with prior rights.  It is believed that NOMINET will hold a two stage sunrise and land rush process which will likely include an auction if multiple parties order the same name.

The first sunrise stage is planned to begin before the end of 2010.  The registry expects to publish full details of the release process on 1 November 2010.

A full list of the domains that are being released is can be found at

Safenames will be assisting any company or organization that is interested in registering one of these names.  If you have any questions, please contact your Safenames account manager or contact us at +44-1-908-200022 or [email protected] or at +1-703-574-5313 or [email protected] .

Registered Rights Sunrise phase UPDATE:

The Registered Rights Sunrise phase for the release of reserved short domains will open at midday 1200 GMT on 1 December 2010.  The application process will close at midday 1200 GMT on 17 January 2011, and the IP rights validation process will close at midday 1200 GMT on 31 January.

The Registered Rights Sunrise phase is for the holders of registered trade marks enforceable in the UK exactly matching the short domain being made available (excluding the suffix, org. uk etc) and in force as of 1 January 2008 AND who can provide evidence of bona fide use in the UK on or before 1 January 2008, to the satisfaction of an independent IP rights validation assessor.

If you are not a registered trade mark holder who meets these criteria you cannot apply at this stage. You will need to apply either in the Unregistered Rights Sunrise phase or the landrush phase.