China’s sport authority has banned the issuing of Internet domain names based on the country’s Olympic gold medal-winning athletes to anyone but the medalists themselves, according to the China Internet Network Information Center (CNNIC).
The General Administration of Sport (GAS) had demanded a veto over the registration of domain names featuring the names of Chinese gold medalists, said the CNNIC
The GAS provided the CNNIC with a full list of China’s Olympic team prior to the Games opening on Aug. 8, and had registered all available domain names for athletes in Chinese characters and in Pinyin.
“The move will better protect the interests of the Olympic gold medalists,” said Hu.
The domain names would be given free to the gold medalists to build their own sites.
Those who had already registered before the GAS order could keep the the domain names, but were advised to give it to the medalist “as a gift”.
The protection of domain names is especially difficult in China, where thousands of people can share the same name or the same spelling of their name in Pinyin.
More than 9,000 people are reported to share the name of diving champ Guo Jingjing, excluding those whose names bear the same Pinyin spelling.
China has so far collected a record 43 gold medals at the Beijing Games.
The Beijing News has reported that domain names featuring at least 10 gold medalists, including weightlifter Chen Xiexia, and gymnast Yang Wei, were registered before the Games.
Guess you can register domains of competitors that lost, however.