Progressive Insurance Withdraws Application For New gTLD .Insurance

Progressive Insurance has withdrawn its application for the new gTLD .insurance.

The formal name of the applicant was  “Progressive Casualty Insurance Company”.

The application which had a prioritization number of 1847 was to operate the TLD on a closed basis.

Closed generics have been getting a lot of push back and ICANN recently closed a comment period for the topic of whether companies should be allowed to own a right of the dot generic extension.

According to the application, Progressive would have operated the new gTLD on a “restricted, exclusively-controlled gTLD where only Applicant, affiliated entities (i.e. part of the same corporate organization as the Applicant), and authorized business partners of Applicant and⁄or its affiliates will be permitted to register second-level domains for Applicant and⁄or affiliate business purposes only for a term of one to ten years.”

Progressive withdrawn application is the 33rd new gTLD application to be withdrawn reflected on ICANN’s site.

There are still 3 other applicants for .insurance.

There is an application for .insure as well as 1 for .carinsurance and .autoinsurance

Comments

  1. says

    I think we are starting to see applications withdrawn as a result of parties being paid off to withdrawal. I wonder how many applicants applied just to play that game.

  2. Dave Tyrer says

    Progressive faced formidable opposition from some very powerful and influential players, like the American Insurance Association to begin with, Prudential, AXA and Allianz… as can be seen in objections at the ICANN closed generics forum.

    And then there is opposition from the Australian government, which as a major ally of the USA is influential in Washington.

    It would have been extremely hard for Progressive to defy the American Insurance Association who made their opinion very clear.

    The AIA even pointed out that Progressive’s application for a closed registry would have actually excluded the US (and other government) regulating agencies… that… regulate the insurance industry itself :o)

    Here’s an edited excerpt from AIA’s comment:

    ————————
    “The business of insurance is a highly regulated industry that relies on competition and consumer trust. As such, delegating generic strings such as .insurance, .autoinsurance, and .carinsurance for the exclusive use of a single entity not only undermines the purpose and goals of the new gTLD program, but also challenges the basic foundation of the insurance industry. For example, Progressive’s application for .insurance states that it plans to use the gTLD ‘not only to improve Progressive’s core businesses but to creatively react to and pursue revenue producing relationships’ and that ‘successful execution of [the .insurance initiative] …will grow its reputation as a primary insurance resource in the U.S. and global marketplace.’

    “These statements indicate the desire of a single entity in the industry to become the sole source of content from these generic TLD strings for the entire insurance industry… it is clear… that the applicants do not intend to obtain and operate these gTLDs for the benefit of the larger community, but instead to gain exclusive control of a key industry term for a TLD to the exclusion of the other companies (and trade groups) in the community. Accordingly… granting such closed generic TLDs would have a significant anti-competitive effect on this industry. In addition, the government agencies that regulate the business of insurance will also be excluded from using these insurance-based TLD strings or similar gTLD strings.

    “The statements in these applications also evidence the potential to create consumer confusion. Consumers will likely be misled into believing that one entity represents the entire insurance industry, has established measures that have set them apart from (or is safer than) the rest of the industry, or has somehow obtained governmental license or endorsement that it is superior to other members of the larger insurance community.”
    ————————

    I’ve published edited excerpts from about 100 comments to the ICANN forum at SuperMonopolies.com.

    Here’s the link to a longer version of the AIA comment:

    http://www.supermonopolies.com/forum_4.html

    AXA is also on page 4, Allianz Group on page 5 and Prudential on 6.

    Unfortunately, the links to the original comments are currently incorrect (26 Mar) because ICANN recently changed their links but will fix soon.

    So here are the actual source links, current as of today at least:

    AIA

    http://forum.icann.org/lists/comments-closed-generic-05feb13/msg00172.html

    Prudential

    http://forum.icann.org/lists/comments-closed-generic-05feb13/msg00176.html

    Allianz Group

    http://forum.icann.org/lists/comments-closed-generic-05feb13/msg00224.html

    AXA

    http://forum.icann.org/lists/comments-closed-generic-05feb13/msg00133.html

  3. Grim says

    With billions in revenue and a spokeswoman named ‘Flo’, Progressive isn’t exactly a small company, so it would be odd if they could be paid off.

    Probably another reason.

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