Slovakia: Towards a new governance of the .SK?
On Tuesday July 18th, 2017

Slovakia: Towards a new governance of the .SK?

National extensions are usually run by a country's registry: AFNIC for .FR, DNSBelgium for Belgium, Nominet for .UK etc. However, sometimes for technical or economic reasons a country might no longer be in charge of selling its own extension. In such a case, a delegation to a foreign registry is not always appreciated...

A registry with an obsolete registration system & a country with limited means ...

This could potentially happen with the .SK registry, NIC-SK, concerning the official top level domain of Slovakia. For more than 10 years, this organization has been managing .SK domains under the governance of DanubiaTel a giant of the communication. But with the massive arrival of the new gtlds, it seems that the registration system of the registry has gradually reach its limit.

To compensate this system obsolescence companies must update the registration system, which is expensive and requires long maintenance. As a result, members of the government involved in the NIC-SK activity are rather closed to this alternative and prefer to delegate the management of the .SK to an other entity.

Toward a changeover to CentralNic?

A first decision had already rendered the population mad when the Slovak government had switch the management of the .SK to a private company (DanubiaTel) by using NIC-SK, when it was initially managed by the Slovak University. Many of them have been insurgent since this cctld is no longer under the direct care of a non-profit organization that would be more legitimate for decision-making.

Things took a turn for the worse since NIC-SK is negotiating with CentralNic concerning the .SK sales management. This UK-based registry manages worldwide extensions such as the .XYZ, and has a more efficient registration system than the Slovak registry to manage the .SK. Therefore CentralNic, with its technical means and expertise in managing extensions, seems more given to ensure the sale of the official Slovak domain.

An untoward decision for part of the Slovak internet community has set up a petition to cancel this transfer and bring back the .SK control to the Slovaks. For many, this switch could lead for the extension to open up for anyone worldwide. If an eventual restrictions removal could lead to higher sales, it could also bring a more aggressive competition. But it also raises an ethical problem that tends to distort the very identity of the .SK in the eyes of the Slovak internet community.




Victor JULIA

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