Norwegian registry sets por.no domain

Relaxing of the rules by Norway's domain registry Norid has cleared the way for registration of the por.no domain, as well as data.no, web.no.

Norid changed the registration policy for the .no domain on Feb. 19. The organization then took in new applications over a four-day period. A lottery under the auspices of the Norwegian Post and Telecommunications authority on Feb. 26 decided what names went to which applicant.

"The data.no domain was most wanted with 208 applicants, second with 197 requests came helse.no (Norwegian for health)," said Hilde Thunem, manager at Norid. "These domains were registered like a normal domain and are not an official part of .no," she added.

Perhaps the most conspicuous domain -- por.no -- was requested 87 times. The domain was won by Norwegian Internet company Idium AS, operator of Web portal Portalen.no.

"First off, we are not in the porn business," said Kyrree Wathne, head of development at Oslo-based Idium. "We plan to use the domain in our Web based e-mail service, which already includes other fun Norwegian names. Porno, incidentally, means the same in Norwegian as it does in English."

Idium has registered about 100 domain names, of which most fall in the International .com domain. The company offers users free e-mail addresses, like john_doe@por.no.

"We also have, for example, pornostjerne.com, Norwegian for 'porn star,' " said Wathne, adding that the e-mail service has 20,000 registered users. "The service is targeted at younger people, of course we also have some more serious domains."

Norway's domain name policy was very strict. Allowing registered companies and organizations to only claim one domain. Additionally, that name had to be linked to the business, effectively limiting the options to the business name or a product name.

"Now we allow 15 domains and the names don't have to be associated with the company or organization," Thunem said.

Norid in Trondheim, Norway can be reached at +47 73 55 10 00, or via the Web at http://www.norid.no/. Idium in Oslo can be reached at +47 22 00 84 00, or on the web at http://www.idium.com/.

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