by Staff Writer
After thirty-two years since the first world domain name .com was launched, Africa still has no domain name. But finally, Africa has a chance to introduce in four months’ time its own domain name — dotAfrica (.africa), a generic Top Level Domain (gLTD).
The Internet Corporation for Assigned Names & Numbers (ICANN) has approved the launch plan and dates for dotAfrica, Lucky Masilela, the CEO of dotAfrica gTLD (generic Top Level Domain) administrator ZACR (ZA Central Registry), announced on Tuesday.
ICANN is the US non-profit tasked with maintaining the efficient functioning of the worldwide web.
From 4 April 2017, dotAfrica domain names will be available to the public.
“This is when the gates to the most desirable African real estate in cyberspace will be thrown open,” said Masile.
The confirmation of the dotAfrica launch dates follows the delegation by ICANN of the rights to administer the new, pan-African dotAfrica gTLD to ZACR on 15 February 2017.
Delegation means dotAfrica names can be published on the web.
The Sunrise phase where trademark holders and other intellectual property (IP) rights holders can apply for dotAfrica domain names associated with their IP has now been finalised for the period 4 April to 3 June 2017.
The Landrush phase where anyone can apply for premium dotAfrica domain names with auctions likely featuring here has been confirmed for the month of June 2017. General Availability, commencing on 4 July, will see members of the public registering their own dotAfrica domain names for the very first time.
The entire continent can now be united together as one Internet community; enabling e-commerce, technology and infrastructure to flourish under a single African umbrella.