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Recent gTLD Registrations Mostly Defensive

With cybersquatters scooping up names related to brands left, right and center; many companies engage in what's known as "defensive" domain name registration.

One of the major complaints about the expansion of the gTLD (generic top-level domain) program came from trademark owners who felt that they would be required (forced if you will) to register all variations of their brand name so as to protect it from squatters. 

Guess what? That's exactly what has happened. 

The International Trademark Association (INTA) recently conducted a study into new gTLD registrations and found that registration activity is heavily defensive. The INTA study, for example, revealed that registrations of new TLDs were overwhelmingly made for defensive purposes (to prevent someone else from registering it). As such, few (10%) felt there were alternative domains to consider — whether registering a New, Legacy or ccTLD.

Most trademark owners, however, aren't just sitting around waiting. 

Three fourths (76%) of members have taken action against domain name owners using new TLDs by sending cease and desist letters and one in four (27%) have used UDRP proceedings. Three fourths (76%) have spent more than $1,000 on Cease and desist letters in the past 24 months. While less common, those who have taken UDRP actions spend three times the average of cease and desist efforts.

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