AFNIC, the French domain name registry, will accept soon domain names with one and two characters, following its German and English counterpart’s footsteps. The idea was refused for a long time because of possible confusions with country extensions published by the International Organization for Standardization (ISO). However, there are few reasons to stop such registrations.
We can find indeed some restrictions leading to confusions, such as existing extensions in the AFNIC registry (<fr.fr>) and country or second level extensions (<uk.fr>, <co.fr>). Nevertheless, there isn’t any problem registering domain names like <a.fr> or <2ü.fr>.
Moreover, short domain names are popular. They are in limited number and easy to remember. Hence, their acquisition is not easy and the competition is tough.
Contrary to the German registry which offered in 2009 a procedure to best and quicker bidders, the English system processed by stages, a fairer method.
AFNIC plans to offer a procedure available by the majority of internet users and may propose different ways of release, such as « first come, first served » or an auction system.
To be continued…