.cal Domain Information
Applicant Full Legal Name
Charleston Road Registry Inc.
1600 Amphitheatre Parkway
Mountain View 94043
State of Delaware (General Corporations Code)
Applied for gTLD
Mission/Purpose of Domain Extension
18.a. Mission/Purpose of the Proposed gTLD Charleston Road Registry is an American company, wholly owned by Google, which was established to provide registry operator services to the Internet public. Google is an American multinational public corporation and global technology leader focused on... Read more
Charleston Road Registry is an American company, wholly owned by Google, which was established to provide registry operator services to the Internet public. Google is an American multinational public corporation and global technology leader focused on improving the ways its hundreds of millions of users connect with information. Since its formation, Google has been developing technology that can improve upon existing ways of doing business on the Internet. Google provides a variety of services and tools for Internet users and advertisers of all sizes, from simple search features and local ads to enterprise-scale business applications and global advertising solutions. These tools make it easier for people to make use of the world's information and enable entrepreneurs and publishers around the world to grow their businesses.
In line with Google's general mission, Charleston Road Registry's mission is to help make information universally accessible and useful by extending the utility of the DNS while enhancing the performance, security and stability of the Internet for users worldwide. Charleston Road Registry aspires to create unique web spaces where users can learn about Google products, services and information in a targeted manner and in ways never before seen on the Internet. Its business objective is to manage Google's gTLD portfolio and Google's registry operator business. As discussed further in the responses to questions 23 and 31, Charleston Road Registry intends to outsource all critical registry functions to Google Registry Services.
The proposed gTLD will provide the marketplace with direct association to the term, ʺcal,ʺ which is intended to be short for ʺcalendar.ʺ The mission of this gTLD, .cal, is to provide a dedicated domain space in which to enact second-level domains that relate to the management of an individual, group, or enterpriseʹs calendar via Google Calendar. This mission will enhance consumer choice by providing new availability in the second-level domain space for users of Google calendar, creating new layers of organization on the Internet, and signaling the kind of content available in the domain.
The proposed gTLD will also provide Charleston Road Registry with the means to meet its business objectives.×
18.b. Benefits to Registrants, Internet Users, and Others 18.b.i.1. Specialty Charleston Road Registry intends to apply for an exemption to ICANN's Registry Operator Code of Conduct and operate the proposed gTLD with Google as the sole registrar and registrant. The proposed gTLD will... Read more
Charleston Road Registry intends to apply for an exemption to ICANN's Registry Operator Code of Conduct and operate the proposed gTLD with Google as the sole registrar and registrant. The proposed gTLD will specifically align with Google Calendar, an existing Google product, and will provide users with improved capabilities that meet their diverse needs.
The specialization goal of the proposed gTLD is to provide a dedicated second-level domain space for a user's or enterprise's management of their Google Calendar. This specialization introduces a new domain name hierarchy that will generate new Google Calendar namespace, and provide for streamlined, internal Google management of the introduction and phase out of new or retiring products and/or services in the second-level domain.
This specialization offers Internet users Google services that will enhance their current and future experience with Google Calendar. Google will manage a process whereby users will be able to make use of unique vanity names in the gTLD; such second-level domains will only point to the Google offering. This provides users with a distinctive namespace as they develop and implement a unique, customized vision for their use of Google Calendar. Google strives to offer its customers leading edge tools that will not only enable them to better personalize their respective second-level domain content, but also spur further creativity and generate new options on the Internet.
As the Internet is ever changing, these services will evolve to meet users' needs to the benefit of the Internet public. Google seeks to continuously provide tools that solve problems faced by Internet users, and, in partnership with Charleston Road Registry, the proposed gTLD will open the opportunity for Google to provide these customer-centric solutions.
18.b.i.2. Service Levels
Through its association with Google, Charleston Road Registry is uniquely positioned to enable and support the proposed gTLD by providing its service reliability and speed of delivery as a part of its services. Google brings unique expertise and a proven record of excellence in infrastructure operations: Google now runs the largest DNS system in the world, has industry-leading uptime on its services, such as web search, and offers enterprise services on which governments and businesses depend.
Charleston Road Registry's service level goal for the proposed gTLD is to ensure that Google, as the proposed sole registrant, is supported in delivering the high level of quality, speed, and service to users for which it is known. Indeed, two of Google's core principles in providing Internet search and related goods and services are "focus on the user and all else will follow" and "fast is better than slow."
In focusing on the user, Google strives to provide the best user experience possible. Google will continue to operate under this principle when designing new offerings and providing goods and services within the proposed gTLD.
Google keeps speed in mind with each new product it releases, from faster mobile applications to improved Web browsers designed for rapid search and navigation. Google continues to devote its resources to improving speed and efficiency. In managing the proposed gTLD, Google expects to keep its service reliability and speed to this standard through direct management of all technical infrastructure related to DNS resolution other than the operation of the root servers.
Charleston Road Registry is committed to using the most technologically advanced, secure, and reliable registry services for all of the domain names within the gTLD so as to not compromise the service levels, security, and stability of the gTLD to users across the globe.
Google has a proven record of providing high-quality, secure online services. Charleston Road Registry seeks to enhance Google's reputation for excellence, superior quality, high level of security, and become known as an exemplary domain name services provider.
When Internet users visit a domain name in the proposed gTLD environment, they will be able to reliably expect and experience the high level of security and quality on which Google's reputation has been built.
The registry will be structured so that Google registers and manages domain names in the .cal gTLD, that those domain names are used for only Google Calendar-related purposes, and that the registry is responsive to legal rights owners (if applicable).
As noted, Charleston Road Registry intends to apply for an exemption to ICANN's Registry Operator Code of Conduct and operate the proposed gTLD with Google as the sole registrar and registrant. This facilitates Google's ability to further enhance the Google Calendar brand and the reputation of Google Calendar offerings.
In addition, Charleston Road Registry's operation of the new gTLD will provide the opportunity for users to build and/or bolster their unique brands or tailor unique user identities in association with the proposed gTLD.
Charleston Road Registry supports the advancement of registry operators as a whole and the diffusion of gTLDs amongst diverse stakeholders to generate increased competition for the benefit of the Internet public. Increased competition will result in more competitive prices for consumers, generate efficiencies, increase productivity in enterprises, and spur innovation in the gTLD space.
Google will have the opportunity to differentiate and innovate upon its Google Calendar products and services through its use of the gTLD.
The proposed gTLD, .cal, will provide a new mechanism for users to make use of a unique, vanity second-level domain name that points to the userʹs Calendar account. Charleston Road Registry anticipates the .cal gTLD will help grow the volume of calendar offerings on the Internet, thereby increasing competition among web-based calendar service providers.
The proposed gTLD will promote competition in the gTLD space by inciting competitors to respond with improved gTLD operations, greater range and higher quality products and services integrated with domain name offerings, and/or the creation of their own respective gTLDs, to the benefit of all Internet users. Launching the proposed gTLD will also generate increased competition in the online marketplace by adding incremental availability to the second-level domain pool.
As noted above, Charleston Road Registry intends to apply for an exemption to the ICANN Registry Operator Code of Conduct. Given that the proposed gTLD is exclusively intended for use in connection with Googleʹs service, Charleston Road Registry believes that there is a reasonable case for such an exemption. Should ICANN not approve this proposed exemption, Charleston Road Registry will facilitate a fair and equitable registrar process, providing open access to any registrar who meets ICANN accreditation guidelines.
The proposed gTLD will clearly be differentiated from other gTLDs due to its purposefully limited scope. This differentiation includes: (1) uniqueness in terms of the users the proposed gTLD seeks to benefit; (2) a clear indicator that second-level domains within the gTLD offer a particular, targeted content; (3) and because the TLD will be associated with a Google offering, Internet users will immediately be able to rely on the quality of the product.
The gTLD will provide an authoritative environment for the provision of Google Calendar offerings. New, higher quality products offered in the gTLD will also attract new users to the Google offering.
The .cal gTLD will provide Google with the opportunity to differentiate its Calendar offerings from other calendar and meeting scheduling service providers by virtue of its branded gTLD. This gTLD is not currently available in the gTLD space, and its provision will eliminate the need for Google to use more generic gTLDs, such as .com, to deliver its Calendar offerings.
The proposed gTLD will also encourage differentiation among users. Google's services, including tools to improve and customize users' unique Google Calendar experiences, will provide users with new ways of distinguishing themselves from others.
The proposed gTLD will promote further innovation by creating a new space for the categorization and classification of online content. The proposed gTLD is in itself innovative, as it seamlessly combines DNS services with other Google products and services.
The proposed gTLD will spur further innovation at Google by providing an accelerated platform for the introduction of new Calendar offerings to the public. The proposed gTLD will provide a mechanism for enhanced branding and management of Google's Calendar offerings.
The proposed gTLD, .cal, will promote innovation by encouraging Google to create new offerings for distribution in the .cal gTLD. In addition, the proposed gTLD will encourage other online services to create new offerings and/or provide an umbrella gTLD in which to link their respective offerings, providing Internet users the same benefits as .cal will provide. In addition, Google may choose to innovate within its portfolio of web spaces and introduce distinguishing features that further crystallize the relationship between offerings provided in the gTLD and the Google brand and reputation. This will likely invite user comparison among domain sites, encouraging competitors to innovate and develop new features and services.
Charleston Road Registry considers the proposed gTLD to be a platform for innovation with existing and future Google products and services. Charleston Road Registry, therefore, may incorporate these new offerings into future registry service options (subject to the ICANN approval process), infusing new ideas into the gTLD for the betterment of the public.
Google consistently aims to improve upon technologies that connect people with information, as demonstrated by a proven record of innovation and iteration. Charleston Road Registry strives to offer its users this same level of continuous development in advancing its management and operation of the gTLD, engendering an improved user experience.
18.b.iii. User Experience
Charleston Road Registry will strive to provide the highest level of user experience through operational stability, security, and performance to serve the interest of users in the proposed gTLD. Charleston Road Registry is uniquely positioned to provide this level of experience given its relationship with Google; per its SEC filings, Google invested over $3 billion in its IT infrastructure in 2011 and maintains a record of excellence in infrastructure operations.
Google keeps user experience in mind with each new service it releases, from allowing users to personalize their Gmail accounts to providing small to medium businesses with tools customized for their specific needs. The proposed gTLD provides Google with a formal mechanism whereby it can continue to improve its services to address the ever-changing needs of all Internet users.
The proposed gTLD, furthermore, facilitates an improved online user experience by provisioning the DNS on users' behalf and streamlining the process by which users are able to link to and make use of the Google offering.
The proposed gTLD, .cal, will provide users with an improved Google Calendar experience by allowing for users' direct management of their respective content within the .cal gTLD
In focusing on the user, Google strives to provide the best user experience possible. Google will continue to operate under this principle when designing and providing new service offerings in the proposed gTLD. The proposed gTLD will provide users with improved customization services and facilitate additional opportunities to enhance their current and future experience with Google Calendar.
The proposed gTLD will provide a more trusted and user-friendly environment where domain names and content related to the .cal gTLD can flourish. Charleston Road Registry seeks to have users deem the gTLD trustworthy and reliable and recognize it as an aggregated source of targeted goods, services, and information.
Lastly, the proposed gTLD improves the Internet user experience by creating greater structure and categorization on the Internet.
18.b.iv. Registration Policies
Because the sole purpose of the proposed gTLD is to associate domain names with the Google Calendar offering, Charleston Road Registry intends to apply for an exemption to the ICANN Registry Operator Code of Conduct and operate the gTLD with Google as the sole registrar and registrant. As the sole registrant, Google will have the opportunity to differentiate and innovate upon its Google Calendar products and services through its use of the gTLD.
Given the proposed limited scope and use of the gTLD, Charleston Road Registry believes that there is a reasonable case for such an exemption. Should ICANN not condone this proposed exemption, Charleston Road Registry will make access to Registry Services, including the shared registration system, available to all ICANN-accredited registrars.
Charleston Road Registry believes that given its specific use, the .cal gTLD will best add value to the gTLD space by limiting all second-level domains to the sole use of pointing at Google Calendar offerings. Google will manage a process whereby users will be able to make use of unique vanity names in the gTLD; such second-level domains will only point to the user's Google Calendar account. In addition, only entities and individuals with a Google Calendar account or who create a new account may be eligible to enact a second-level domain within the gTLD.
Charleston Road Registry is committed to implementing strong and integrated intellectual property rights protection mechanisms. Doing so is critical to Google's goals of model Internet citizenship and fostering Internet development, especially in emerging regions. Accordingly, Charleston Road Registry intends to offer a suite of rights protection measures which builds upon ICANNʹs required policies while fulfilling its commitment to encouraging innovation, competition and choice on the Internet.
18.b.v. Protection of Privacy and Confidential Information
Charleston Road Registry will strive to ensure the appropriate level of privacy and security will be met for its users. Although Google will be the only registrant (and is intended to serve as the only registrar for the gTLD as well), Charleston Road Registry and its provider of registry services, Google, have imposed measures to achieve this protection for their users; additional specifics regarding the practices for the registry include but are not limited to the following:
- Charleston Road Registry will attempt to prevent the misuse of WHOIS data for improper purposes such as spam, intellectual property theft or phishing. Charleston Road Registry will attempt to identify patterns of abusive usage of the WHOIS service and will appropriately use CAPTCHA, query throttling or other techniques to prevent information scraping.
- Google will restrict access to data and information systems maintained by the registry to a specific list of individuals involved with supporting the Google Registry system in production. Google will review this list on a periodic basis to ensure that the level of access granted to individuals is appropriate. Google uses two-factor authentication and other mechanisms to ensure that staff with access to user information are properly identified prior to using registry systems.
- In the event that other registrars are involved, registrar billing and payment information will not be stored alongside domain name registration information. All registrar billing and payment information will be stored in a PCI-compliant billing system similar to that used by Google Ads.
18.b.vi. Outreach and Communications Efforts
Once Google begins developing public-facing resources in its gTLD, it intends to inform the public about the gTLD and the opportunity for users to obtain domain space there through marketing and public relation investments.
Charleston Road Registry, in conjunction with Google, intends to promote gTLDs under its purview collectively, such that the public gains an awareness and understanding of new gTLDs and the availability of new second-level domain space on the Internet. Charleston Road Registry and Google believe that this approach will make the strongest impact in modifying consumer behavior and is the best path to achieving success for all new gTLDs collectively.
Charleston Road Registry and Google will reach out to the Internet community via a number of different outreach and communications methods and venues to deliver its mission and message to the public, including but not limited to: press briefings, videos posted on various Internet sites, blogs and other social media, and paid advertising. In addition, when developing resources for localized Internet registrars in different global regions, Google will use local marketing and communications platforms as needed.×
Operational Rules and Cost Benefits
18.c.i Should ICANN grant Charleston Road Registry's exemption to the Code of Conduct, and the proposed gTLD operate with Google as the sole registrar and registrant, members of the public will not be able to directly register domain names in this new gTLD. Users will, however, be given the... Read more
Should ICANN grant Charleston Road Registry's exemption to the Code of Conduct, and the proposed gTLD operate with Google as the sole registrar and registrant, members of the public will not be able to directly register domain names in this new gTLD. Users will, however, be given the opportunity to make use of a vanity second-level domain as a memorable identifier linked to content in Google Calendar. Users will be assigned a vanity domain name pursuant to Google's forthcoming user registration guidelines. In addition, Google will follow ICANN rules for attributions of trademarked second-level domains and will offer other protections for trademark owners, including but not limited to an extended Trademark Claims Service of indefinite length.
Should ICANN grant Charleston Road Registry's exemption to the Code of Conduct, the proposed gTLD will operate with Google as the sole registrar and registrant. As registrations will be granted based on Google business needs and user demand, Charleston Road Registry will charge prices commensurate with overall business costs. Charleston Road Registry does not intend but reserves the right to offer introductory discounts and bulk registration discounts to this sole registrant.
Should ICANN grant Charleston Road Registry's exemption to the Code of Conduct, the proposed gTLD operate with Google as the sole registrar and registrant. As registrations will be granted based on Google business needs and user demand, Charleston Road Registry will charge prices commensurate with overall business costs. Contractual commitments to registrants regarding price escalation are not relevant to Google's mission or goals for the new gTLD at this time, as Google is the sole registrant.×
Is this a Community-based TLD?
Is this a Geographic-based TLD?
Protection of Geographic Names
As is specified throughout this application, Charleston Road Registry (CRR) plans to operate the top-level domain as a closed registry and shall not permit any party to register or operate any second-level domain names within the TLD. In accordance with ICANN's recommendations in the January 11,... Read more
(1) all of the English country and territory names found in ISO 3166-1 and their specified short form abbreviations;
(2) all the of names found in the United Nations Group of Experts on Geographical Names, as found in the Technical Reference Manual for the Standardization of Geographical Names, Part III (Names and Countries of the World); and
(3) all of the names of the United Nations member states as prepared by the Working Group on Country Names of the United Nations Conference on the Standardization of Geographical Names in the six official languages of the United Nations.
As noted above, the top-level domain shall not permit the public to register domains at the second-level. The registry shall not use or license the use of any full country name in English, or any other reserved language, as a second-level domain except in accordance with Specification 5 of the New gTLD Agreement. With regard to the abbreviated country and territory names found in ISO 3166-1, CRR plans to reserve current and future country abbreviations for use at the second-level. This follows the spirit and function of the procedures that the .info TLD utilized.
As with the .info TLD, CRR shall ensure that all geographic abbreviation identifiers contained within the ISO 3166-1 list will be reserved to us as the registry operator. Unlike the .info TLD, however, the registry shall not make any of these identifiers publicly available for registration. CRR plans to make these these two letter geographic abbreviation identifiers available to Google to provide localized content via second-level domains. Googleʹs Web Search and other services are customized for a number of countries and regions across the world, and these two letter second level domain names would be used to provide a namespace to which that customization could be applied. For example, bw.Google could provide search results that would be most relevant for users in Botswana. It could allow Google to direct users to the site that can give them the most relevant results.
CRR notes that confusion regarding whether the second-level domain is an official conduit of the affected country should be of minimal concern for governments in the context of a closed registry whose TLD is the trademark of a private entity and where all usage of the domain is directly tied to Google's brand and offerings. Unlike .info, there should be a minimal possibility of creating geopolitical conflicts in the top-level domain resulting from confusion associated with national government websites. Further, it is not CRR desire to serve TLDs that compete with national ccTLDs, rather to serve Google's users more localized content in a given region.
Google's core business functions include facilitating searches for Internet content and communications among Internet users. In connection with these functions, CRR intends to fully utilize the abbreviated country code names to harness the TLD to provide localized content, especially to the developing world. Throughout 2011, several chapters of the Internet Society in developing nations have found that despite growing connectivity in their nations, Internet usage and electronic commerce were not thriving due to a lack of localized content. Google's localized sites shall help provide a means of rectifying this situation, ensuring that Internet users in developed and developing nations have access to substantive content that is relevant to their lives.
While the development and deployment of specific localized sites will depend upon global and local demand and the technological integration of new gTLDs into the larger Internet fabric, Google's goal is to continually expand its usage of localized sites in the top-level domain.×