'Pointless' .mobi landrush launched

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'Pointless' .mobi landrush launched

Registration open to all - if you can find anything left.

The registration of .mobi domains has been opened to all-comers, although most of the decent names are likely to have been claimed already.

The new domain, aimed specifically at mobile devices, has been available to trademark holders since May. Over 12,000 names have already been snapped up.

Punters can now go and register any names that are left, although those looking for decent generic names are likely to be disappointed.

The dotMobi registry has reserved over 5,500 so-called 'premium generic terms', such as sex.mobi and sun.mobi, which it claims is designed to avoid domain names falling into the wrong hands. 

Anyone that wishes to apply for a premium name must first stump up a whopping US$1,500 to the World Intellectual Property Organisation for accreditation. Only once this has been approved can they then attempt to register the domain.

Rachel Lashford, senior analyst and research manager at Canalys, told vnunet.com that, although not quite cyber-squatting, the approach "does seem a rather underhand tactic". 

"Having another top level domain is a completely pointless exercise," she said.

Bloggers looking for a top mobile name will be disappointed. The address blog.mobi has already been taken - by the dotMobi registry itself. The site redirects to a Typepad blog which is not optimised for mobile devices. 

Jonathan Robinson, chief operating officer at NetNames, said: "Any organisation which has yet to secure its .mobi trademarks has left itself wide open to abuse from cyber-squatters, domain name speculators and competitors." 

Neil Edwards, chief executive at dotMobi, added: "We are creating a link between mobile operators, internet content providers and the millions of mobile users seeking a consistent, reliable and enjoyable internet experience."
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