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Sample Brand Domains


.merck (1)
.merck (2)



This small list of brand domains represents less than one eighth of around 680 pending applications. The potential collective impact on the internet is significant — given the immense resources and market power of these global corporations.

NOTE: IDNs (internationalized domain names) such as brand names in Chinese or Arabic scripts are not currently covered by this site.





The .shell Dot Brand

Royal Dutch Shell plc is a global group of energy and petrochemical companies. The group produces around 2% of the world's oil and 3% of its gas. Activities include exploration, refining, shipping and trade of crude, petrochemical production, research and innovation. Shell operates in more than 90 countries and has over 90,000 employees.

The .shell registry will provide Shell with a stable and secure platform for the delivery of internal and external communications with a wide variety of stakeholders.

The company will monitor and use best-practice technologies to ensure that this initiative is at the forefront of its online communications. One stated purpose of the TLD is for it to "reflect the Shell brand's importance and global reach".

Shell views itself as a pioneering brand that will use innovative communications technologies in the creation of the .shell extension. The string will reflect the company's active and strong investment in research and development.

Acquiring its own brand TLD will be seen as a natural progression of Shell's overall brand strategy. The mission of the .shell TLD is to protect, reinforce and enhance the online integrity of the "Shell" brand; and:

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To enhance secure internet communication between Shell and key audiences — including customers, partners, media, those affected by its business, and the public at large — while providing Shell with a platform for possible future innovation...

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Shell also plans to be agile and flexible with its TLD program — usage and policies governing the brand domains will reflect future changes in the group's business and the nature and scale of the new TLD program's public impact.

Also with an eye on the future, the Applicant states that it may one day offer IDNs (internationalized domain names) in various scripts.

Domains in the .shell registry will only be registered to Shell or its employees (though authorized external users may be able to use domains "under a strict IP licence regime").

The .SHELL registry would be a "Dot Brand" single entity registry established by and for the use of Shell.

The TLD will be managed with very high standards to ensure excellent stability and security. Shell's domain name strategy will undergo a shift.

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Shell wishes to lessen its dependency upon third party domain registries to support effective internet communication...

Shell anticipates taking advantage of and leveraging the freedom of choice of second level domains it will have available for its use by virtue of controlling its own top level domain.

Currently there are no gTLD registries dedicated to brand owners. Shell looks forward to being amongst the first to apply.

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NOTE: second level = left of the dot

All domains in the .shell TLD will be the property of Shell. The names will come to be recognised as "reliable signposts to authorised information and communication". A high level of trust and security will provide great peace of mind.

Shell will work closely with Verisign, its registry services provider, to maintain a robust abuse prevention and mitigation plan to resist any kind of malicious activity or threat to its brand TLD. For example, activities such as fraud, phishing, pharming, botnet command & control, malware distribution, cybersquatting and unauthorized use of copyright material will be guarded against.

Privacy and data will be protected.

Shell will use its best endeavours to comply with all data protection and privacy laws and regulations relevant to operating a .SHELL gTLD.

Shell will use a single "gateway" registrar who will be contractually obliged to only be able to register domains under instruction from authorized Shell personnel. The sole registrant model of the .shell TLD will be a key factor in maintaining the security of the company's brand domains.

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The abuse prevention will combat malicious or abusive use activities that could harm not only SITI, Inc., but also Internet users. Because SITI, Inc. intends to run a private brand TLD registry; abusive or malicious behavior will be far less likely to occur.

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NOTE: SITI = Shell Information Technology International

The abuse prevention policy will be regularly reviewed to take account of any possible threats or misconduct. Third party intellectual property rights will be safeguarded. Securing the integrity of the .shell string will also be in the broad interests of all Internet users, who will regard .shell domains as trustworthy signs of authenticity. Shell wishes to play its role in protecting the interests and reputation of the Internet in general.

globe pictureGeographic Dot Brands

To comply with GAC advice and Specification 5 of the Registry Agreement, Shell will initially block from registration certain country & territory names from the .shell TLD.

These terms are contained in the ISO 3166-1 list, a UN Group of Experts list of standardized names and a comparable UN Working Group list.

Shell anticipates that it will eventually want to use geographical terms and that this would be appropriate for a single entity registry. Such use would not be misleading and further, would serve the public interest.

We envisage that over time, there will be demand from "Dot Brand" TLDs leading to the development of a standardised process for requesting GAC review and ICANN approval for the release... When such a process is in place, Shell expects to apply for the release of country and territory names within .SHELL.

Possible .shell Brand Domains


Brand names mentioned on this site are registered trademarks or trademarks of their respective corporations. This site claims no association with or endorsement by any of these corporations and their marks are mentioned only to illustrate opinion presented in the public interest.

All quotations on this page are from the respective companies' official ICANN brand TLD applications unless otherwise stated.

Many possible theoretical dot brands are mentioned (in English). There are also countless possibilities in other languages. This has significant potential value for international navigation.

This site is focused on reporting the strategic impact of the brand domains on internet communication, competition and commerce, and some comment is speculative.

It is not a comprehensive overview of what some of the world's largest corporations have chosen to reveal about their plans for the implementation of their proprietary domain strings.

ICANN is particularly concerned with the technical, financial, security and legal issues associated with the new TLDs. These issues are beyond the scope of this website.

For a comprehensive overview of the brand domains and their impact on the web, refer to ICANN's website and the individual applications (large parts of which are publicly published).

If you have a particular interest in an individual company, the public aspects of their applications are available for download via these ICANN links: You can also search a complete list of applicants there.

ICANN new gTLD applications

ICANN official website



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The Brand Domains — it's unprecedented — the advent of around 680 companies launching their own dot brands began in 2014.



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