Hong Kong Launches Second Level .HK Domain Names

By Gabriela Kennedy and Joanne Harland

Hong Kong Launches Second Level .HK Domain Names

The Hong Kong Domain Name Registry ("HKDNR") has announced that it will be launching second level domain names under the top-level country-code domain .hk in early 2004. Second level domain names will be generally available to the public after a Soft Launch Period, during which priority for second level .hk domain names will be given to applicants that satisfy certain requirements (see below).

There are no registration requirements for second level .hk domain names unlike for third level .hk domain names (which can only be obtained by entities with a local presence in Hong Kong). Second level .hk domain names will be available to any entity (including individuals 18 years or older) irrespective of their location. No supporting documents will be required when applying for a second level .hk domain name save where the domain includes words such as "bank" or "insurance".

There is no restriction on the location of name servers and there is no limit to the number of domain names that can be registered by any one individual or entity. The minimum registration period is one year and the maximum is five years.

Soft launch period for second level domain names

Prior to the launch of second level .hk domain names to the general public, priority will be given to:

owners of Hong Kong trade marks or service marks (Priority Registration Period);

current holders of third level of .hk domain names (Pre-Registration Period);

individuals or entities that seek to register a second level .hk domain name before the general launch (Sunrise Period).

Priority Registration Period - 12 noon on 26 January 2004 to 12 noon on 19 March 2004

Only owners of registered Hong Kong trademarks or service marks qualify for the Priority Registration.

The following documents/information must be provided with the application during the Priority Registration Period:

A copy of the trademark or service mark certificate from the Hong Kong Trademarks Registry;

A letter of declaration from the applicant that it is the owner of the trade mark or service mark.

If two or more entities apply for the same second level .hk domain name during the Priority Registration Period, priority will be given to the applicant who also has an equivalent third level domain name. If more than one applicant has an equivalent third level domain name, the applicant with the longest standing equivalent third level...

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