April 14, 2014
From June 17 this year, private individuals in Norway will be able register their own domains directly within the .NO namespace.
As the situation currently stands, .NO domains can only be registered by businesses and other organizations. The country's citizens have needed to make do with .PRIV.NO.
However, a recent public consultation showed majority support for the proposal to make .NO available to all.
"A Norwegian domain name is stable and among the most secure in the world. We are very pleased to extend this service to private individuals," said Hege Ossletten, Acting Managing Director of Norid; which operates the registry for Norwegian domain names.
Currently the number of domains directly within the .NO namespace is 620,482. That is expected to increase substantially by the end of the year.
Contemplating a rush on names and given there will be no priority given on private domains; during the initial period where .NO is available to all, Norid will use a lottery system in cases where more than one person applies for the same domain name.
While .NO will likely capture a lot of the limelight in the nation when it comes to domains; .PRIV.NO will continue to be available.
The .NO namespace has enjoyed high renewal rates (around 85%); due in part to the restrictions on registration.
Previous major spikes in registrations occurred in February 2001, when each organization was allowed register more than one domain name; and in February 2004, when it became possible to register domain names with accent and umlaut characters.
While those registration spikes were significant, perhaps this latest loosening up of policy will overshadow them both.
Norid was founded in 2003 and while it fulfils many tasks, it has a staff of just 16. Norid is supervised by the Norwegian Post and Telecommunications Authority.
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