Today the .uk domain name was announced by Nominet – this is despite industry opinion being against such a new domain as it will cause additional cost and consumer confusion.
The decision has been made by Nominet – and there’s no going back.
So what does this mean for you – a holder of an existing co.uk domain name?
Existing .co.uk Get First Dibs
The good news first – as a holder of an existing co.uk domain name you’ll get first refusal to obtain the corresponding .uk domain. So if you have megawidgets.co.uk today, you’ll be offered megawidgets.uk by Nominet.
The Bad News
Now the bad news – the .uk domains are not free – you’ll have to pay for them as you pay for your co.uk and on a yearly basis. Second piece of bad news – when you become the owner of the .uk domain it won’t automatically redirect to your co.uk, you’ll need to set this up yourself. And the worst bit of news, .co.uk is not being phased out, so if you switch to the .uk you’ll continue to need to continue to pay for the matching co.uk to stop cybersquatting.
The correct thing for Nominet to do would to have increased costs of the .uk domain by say 20%, and include the co.uk free of charge – and if/when the co.uk expires, do not allow the renewal apart from by the original registrant.
What a terrible mess.