SPIEGEL-Verlag Rudolf Augstein GmbH & Co. KG
Germany. GERMAN LAW - „Handelsgesetzbuch"
SPIEGEL Question 18a Since its founding in 1947, Spiegel has become the most widely-read and highly respected German news magazine, selling one million copies each week and reaching roughly six million readers. A growing percentage of its circulation is from individuals residing outside of... Read more
SPIEGEL Question 18a
Since its founding in 1947, Spiegel has become the most widely-read and highly respected German news magazine, selling one million copies each week and reaching roughly six million readers. A growing percentage of its circulation is from individuals residing outside of Germany. The company's website, at "spiegel.de" is accessible from every mobile device format, and attracts approximately ten million unique viewers. The company currently generates revenues of about EUR 30 million, predominately through advertising sales and, in a smaller part, through digital subscriptions.
In addition to providing the premier German news and information outlet, the Spiegel online portal offers a wide array of interactive user opportunities, including commenting systems and personalized newsletters. In recent years, Spiegel has rapidly increased its offerings in not only the German language but also in English to reach a broader international audience, and has accordingly created and English-speaking section of its website. Moreover, the company produces a wide range of books, both in traditional print format and "ebooks", on a multitude of various topics, which are available through the site. Currently, the company publishes roughly 25 SPIEGEL and SPIEGEL ONLINE books each year, and the company intends to begin releasing shorter ebooks based on selected articles from Spiegel. These new ebooks will be written by Spiegel's award-winning, top-of-the-industry journalists, and will focus on current news topics.
The company has used its Spiegel trade name in commerce since 1947 and is the registered owner of numerous "Spiegel" and "DER SPIEGEL" trademarks, with protection, inter alia, in all member States of the European Union.
A. The Mission and Purpose of the ".SPIEGEL" space
The new ".SPIEGEL" TLD offers the unique opportunity for a new, brand-based service platform, through which Spiegel intends to integrate both its German and international readers at one comprehensive and easy-to-use location. The ".SPIEGEL" space would operate as an inter-connected nexus of information, available in both English and German, to cater to the needs of its many avid readers worldwide.
The magazine's international users are often unfamiliar with the ".DE" space, and accordingly operation based predominately in a ccTLD has at times made expansion of the company's readership difficult or problematic. The ".SPIEGEL" TLD, however, would be viewed as internationally accessible, and would enable Spiegel to provide a wide array of information and interactive user content in both languages.
The company's core readership in German would also benefit from the dedicated TLD space, as it would enable Spiegel to streamline its content offerings. The company envisages that its main German-language portal would remain in the trusted ".DE" space, enabling users to continue locating content in its familiar location, with additional links to new services, content and opportunities provided via the ".SPIEGEL" TLD. Thus, the company's existing Internet infrastructure would be cross-integrated with the new TLD pages, greatly enhancing the availability of Spiegel content, and giving the company's many consumers broad access to its many news and publication offerings.
The new ".SPIEGEL" domain will serve as a "one-stop-shopping" experience for all of the many services and goods offered by the company beyond the news, and second-level domain name registrations will be carefully managed by the company to enable intuitive navigation of the space.
For example, users may be able to easily update their subscriptions for an array of print and digital magazines released under the SPIEGEL brand at "abo.SPIEGEL." They may choose from the vast selection of books, printed as well as ebooks, written by established Spiegel authors at "shop.SPIEGEL."
Many of the company's highly-acclaimed authors and journalists are also much sought after speakers. Accordingly, Spiegel may create a new in-house speakerʹs agency, at "speakers.SPIEGEL," which will connect its experts to institutions hosting conferences and events.
Additionally, Spiegel will continue to host its own series of events, the Montag auf der Spitze, where industry leaders come together to discuss cultural and political issues. The company might expand this series, showcasing it on "events.SPIEGEL." A livestream of events will be available, as well as archived material, for paying users at "video.SPIEGEL." Furthermore, the Spiegel Group has, for over 20 years, produced a bi-weekly TV show focused on current events, the archives of which the company will make available through ".SPIEGEL."
Another possible aspect of the ".SPIEGEL" TLD is an expansion of commercial offerings that go beyond the news. Such benefits may include a ticketing service for cultural events at "kultur.SPIEGEL," and a customized travel service at "travel.SPIEGEL" or "reisen.SPIEGEL."
Accordingly, Spiegel believes that use of the new TLD will benefit the company, its customers, and general Internet users alike, resulting in increased traffic and Internet user interest. The new space is expected to greatly augment the quality and quantity of offerings by the company, and signifies a large expansion of the Spiegel brand. The ".SPIEGEL" TLD is the gateway to new opportunities for Spiegel, and to an enhanced online experience for its wide array of Internet users.
Additionally, Internet users can be assured of the company's diligent monitoring efforts and privacy protection within the new TLD. As the space will operate under a single-registrant model, Spiegel will be able to exercise full control over the content displayed on ".SPIEGEL" sites and, accordingly, consumers will experience much safer, more trustworthy interactions. Users will be assured that whenever they navigate to a domain name in the TLD, the information displayed on the site will be authentic, authorized and accurate.
Operationally, the ".SPIEGEL" Registry Service Provider KSregistry GmbH will manage the Internet space under the direct control of Spiegel. The TLD will follow a single-registrant model, wherein all registrations within the space are held by Spiegel itself. Affiliated entities and individuals, such as affiliated companies or journalists, may apply to Spiegel to request authorization to license ".SPIEGEL" registrations for their own use. The Legal Department of Spiegel shall review every registration and license request and, in its sole discretion, may approve registrations and grant such licenses on a case-by-case basis. In every case, however, the registrant of record for all domains shall be Spiegel, and the company will monitor the use of all ".SPIEGEL" domain names to ensure that the content of the associated websites remains current and appropriate to the TLD space.×