Brand Owner Alert! Only a Limited Time Remains to Prevent Others from Registering [Your-Brand].xxx

The Sunrise period for registration of .XXX domain names is open now through October 28, 2011. Brand owners who wish to prevent a sexually-explicit adult entertainment provider from registering [YOUR_BRAND].xxx, should take steps now to secure a blocking registration during the Sunrise period. The Sunrise Period has two tracks: Sunrise A and Sunrise B.

Sunrise A is for members of the Sponsored Community, namely those who engage in “Eligible Commerce,” defined as “current, bona fide provision of Online Adult Entertainment, representation of Online Adult Entertainment Providers, and/or the provision of products and/or services to Online Adult Entertainment Providers and/or their representatives.” Sponsored Community members who own a registered trademark for use in Eligible Commerce or who own the same name in another Top Level Domain (TLD) (i.e. .com, .net, .us, etc.), can apply through the Sunrise A process to register a .XXX domain name. Domain names registered through the Sunrise A period will be fully-functional and capable of resolving to online content provided by the owner of the domain name.

Sunrise B is for registered trademark owners who are not members of the Sponsored Community, but wish to own a domain name to block others from registering their mark in the .XXX domain. Such blocking domain names will not resolve to any active online content, only a message indicating that the domain name has been reserved. Sunrise A applicants will be given priority over Sunrise B applicants, and if more than one valid application is received for a domain name during the Sunrise phase, the name will be entered into an auction. Sunrise B applicants will pay a fee of approximately $200-$250, depending upon registrar, to block marks from future .XXX registration so long as the underlying trademark rights remain valid, for at least approximately 10 years, which is the duration of the contract between ICANN and the current registry administrator. Blocking registrations could conceivably have a longer duration (assuming continued validity of the underlying trademark registration) if the current registry administrator renews its contract or its successor in interest honors its blocking registrations.

Sunrise A or B Applicants relying upon a trademark registration as a basis for application must own a trademark registration of “national effect” that was in force on or before September 1, 2011. Marks registered only on the U.S. Supplemental Register are not eligible. To apply for registration, the Sunrise Applicant must provide the trademark name, country, registration number, registration application filing date, registration issue date, class or classes for which the trademark is registered, and the status of the Sunrise Applicant relative to the trademark rights asserted (e.g., owner, licensee, assignee, representative, etc.). A validation agent may subsequently request documentation to support the basis of the Sunrise Application, such as copies of registration certificates or translations. Sunrise A Applicants relying upon an existing domain name registration must provide the domain name (including the TLD suffix) in current use in Eligible Commerce, the original date of creation of the name, and the status of the Sunrise Applicant.

A 10-day Landrush period begins October 24, 2011, for members of the Sponsored Community who wish to pay a premium for registration of their domain name without the proofs needed to qualify for registration during the Sunrise period. The General Availability period opens December 6, 2011, for those who do not qualify for the Sunrise period or do not wish to pay the premium associated with the Landrush. Blocking (non-resolving) registrations can also be secured during the General Availability period, but not during the Landrush.

Brand owners wishing to secure an active or blocking .XXX domain name registration must act quickly. Although the Sunrise Period ends October 28, 2011, Applicants under Sunrise A must complete a Membership Application Process to confirm their status as a member of the Sponsored Community, confirm contact information, and acquire Membership Credentials 5 days prior to the end of the period. A list of accredited registrars able to process applications under the Sunrise Period can be found at: http://www.icmregistry.com/registrars/. RatnerPrestia will be pleased to provide assistance with the Sunrise Registration process upon request.