Frequently Asked Questions
Q.What is the Domain Name Association (the DNA)?
A. The Domain Name Association (also known as “The DNA”) is a new non-profit global business association that represents the interests of the domain name industry. It is independent and global in scope, and its members are groups, businesses of all sizes, and individuals involved in the provision, support, and sale of domain names. This includes such organizations as domain name registries, registrars, resellers, and registry service providers.
Q. What is the domain name industry?
A. The domain name industry consists of the groups, businesses, and individuals who are involved in the provision, support, and sale of Internet domain names. It includes organizations such as domain name registries, registrars, resellers, consultants, and registry service providers. The DNA is the first-ever industry trade group to represent the interests of the entire domain name industry.
Q. What is the mission of the DNA?
A. The DNA’s mission is to promote the best interests of the domain name industry by advocating the use, adoption, and expansion of domain names as the primary tool for users to navigate the Internet.
Q. Who should join the DNA?
A. Any groups, businesses, and individuals involved in the provision, support, and sale of domain names are invited to join the DNA. This includes such organizations as domain name registries, registrars, resellers, and registry service providers.
Q. Why should my organization join the DNA ?
A. The Domain Name Association is the first industry trade group to represent the interests of the domain name industry. This is an opportunity for your organization to collaborate with your peers in the domain name industry and work together to promote and ensure success through a period of major change.
More reasons to join the DNA:
- Lead from the front: Joining the DNA will solidify your role as a critical player in this next phase in the growth of the Internet
- Boost your TLDs: As a member, you can leverage the DNA’s marketing and education programs to maximize the value of your namespaces and domain investments
- Be an insider: DNA members will get the latest information and updates from the domain name industry through regular bulletins, newsletters and research sharing
- Strengthen your voice: Let the DNA help your company influence the important policy decisions that are swirling in the industry
Q. Who founded the DNA?
A. In its early stages, the association was led by an Interim Board of individuals from the companies that were instrumental in the association’s founding and launch, listed below. Later, after the DNA’s launch phase, the members elected the organization’s leaders.
The Founders of the DNA:
- Jeff Eckhaus, Senior Vice President of Corporate Development, Demand Media
- Statton Hammock, VP, Business & Legal Affairs, Registry Operations, United TLD
- Adrian Kinderis (Chair), CEO, ARI Registry Services
- Job Lawrence, Principal, gTech Ideas & Opportunities, Google
- Erik Ludwick. Co-Founder, What Box?
- Richard Merdinger, Vice President – Domains, Go Daddy
- Jon Nevett, Co-Founder and Executive Vice President, Donuts
- Elizabeth Sweezey, VP, Policy and External Relations, FairWinds Partners
Q. Is the DNA a lobbying organization?
A. As part of exercising effective leadership, the DNA will advocate for and represent the interests of the domain name industry before public policy makers. Whether this is called “lobbying” or something else, we do believe it will be part of our education and engagement mission to meet with people and talk about all the things the industry does. However, whatever we call it, it won’t be our sole function.
Q. Is the DNA a policy organization?
A. Typically “NO”, but from time to time there are important exceptions. The Domain Name industry, especially those contracted with ICANN, can be heavily impacted by policy changes. We strive to ensure that there is competent and reasonably accomplished policy outcomes from regulators where possible, and help educate those policy makers, and evangelize about the impacts of policy changes. We also engage in robust dialog with stakeholders on industry-led initiatives for improved policy, to ensure that the industry is leading the discussion on policy matters in order to ensure sound outcomes that minimize adversity for registrants and the commercial landscape of Internet users. Again, whatever we call it, it won’t be our sole function.
Q. Is the DNA only focused on the new gTLDs?
A. Short answer is “NO“. The DNA is focused on Domain Names. ccTLDs and gTLDs old and new are Domain Names. While the new gTLDS were a catalyst for the formation of the DNA, these are not our primary focus. The DNA’s main focus is on promoting, advancing, and supporting the common interests of the domain name industry, and highlighting the benefits and innovation made possible by domain names and TLDs.
Q. Has the association accomplished anything yet?
A. Yes. We form committees and groups to catalyze important discussions and pursue the interests of a robust and dynamic namespace and industry of Domain Names. For example, we have formed Domain Policy initiative mailing lists for purpose, and worked on technical specifications. We are deeply involved, as are our members, in the important work of Universal Acceptance of Domain Names. We created a technical group, spawning the creation of another group within the ICANN community called ‘Regiops’, and ultimately merged the two for the benefit of the industry. The DNA led a group of registries and registrars in a technical capacity to form conversations around creating standards for the provisioning protocols, unifying approaches to new innovations that supported the expansion of the namespace that began as the DNA formed. Other examples of our efforts to date are our important networking events and activities at ICANN and other events like the NamesCon, or MERGE.SHOW events, we have launched whatdomain.org to educate Internet users about domain names and new gTLDs. We invite you to link to this informative, consumer-oriented site from your own website, and refer to it in your promotional efforts.
Additionally, the DNA have developed a library of materials, SEO studies, infographics, member surveys, and other materials to support the increased awareness of a thriving market for domain names. The DNA also have formed and/or incubated a variety of working groups to help in member to member connections, such as the Marketing Committee, Registry/Registrar Technical Operations (merged into ICNANN Regyops), and we played a fundamental role in fostering intra-industry events such as NamesCon, MERGE, and the ICANN Global Domains Division Summits.
Q. What is the cost of membership in the DNA?
A. There is a multi-tiered structure of membership to accommodate various levels of interest and desire for participation in the work of the DNA. The membership category selected determines the level of dues and the benefits received.. Currently there are a variety of membership levels available. Here is a link to learn more about membership options, as well as the costs, benefits, and requirements for joining.