THE MISSION AND PURPOSE OF THE NEW RESTRICTED .PHYSIO GTLD IS TO BENEFIT INTERNET USERS BY ENSURING INCREASED TRUST, CONVENIENCE & UTILITY.
The .physio gTLD will be a new generation gTLD serving the interests of members of the physiotherapy⁄physical therapy (“physio”) profession, as well as internet users more generally. The .physio domain will provide an internet space for the physio community, not in the sense of representing the existing community, but instead through the creation of an online identity for members of the profession, professional associations, affiliated persons & entities in connection with the physio profession. PhysBiz Pty Ltd (PhysBiz) intends to create and authoritative internet space and verifiable resource for internet users to access information and professional services with the .physio gTLD. In making this application, PhysBiz has the support of the World Confederation for Physical Therapy (WCPT) & intends to maintain an ongoing relationship with the WCPT to promote the global success of this initiative. The WCPT is the sole international organisation representing physio’s worldwide; with 106 national member organisations & a total 350,000 physios.
Registrations for second or third level domain names under the new .physio gTLD will only be available to those associated with the physio profession, namely qualified or registered physios, physio students, assistants, aides, professional physio associations, physio entities⁄businesses & universities that offer courses in or relating to physio. Imposing such criteria for registration aims to ensure that the .physiogTLD presents authoritative and verifiable information relating to the physio profession to the general public. Though it is a wide spread global occupation, the physio industry has limited avenues for its professionals & professional associations to interact with one another. . As such, physio intends to provide a space for a networking and enterprising physio industry to develop by providing online tools and business services to members of the profession and information to internet users.
The internet has created a means for global communication and interaction, allowing for greater levels of information exchange, as well as facilitating efficient business transactions. Information about the physio industry is increasingly presented and organised on the internet, allowing for easy interactions and transactions with customers and clients. .physio will also provide an authentic resource for members of the public in relation to physio, allowing for information and professional services to be accessed by end users in a simple and trustworthy way. The creation of an online physio community, through the .physio gTLD will increase utility, convenience and assurance of reliability in the authenticity of information to be provided. The .physio gTLD will continue to create awareness and to add legitimacy to the industry; instilling greater user confidence and trust in the profession.
The mission and purpose of the proposed .physio gTLD shares ICANN’s initiatives to promote the public interest. .physio is committed to contribute towards achieving such initiatives in line with ICANN’s Affirmation of Commitments, which includes:
- consumer trust: .physio will operate as a restricted registry, allowing only those associated with the physio profession, who meet the eligibility requirements, to register under the new gTLD, as specified in the .physio registration policy. Consumers will be able to act with greater confidence and assurance that the information that they are receiving from the .physio domain space is provided by professionals and related businesses in the physio industry. It is estimated that 60-80% of people use the internet to search for health information. There exists a large amount of unregulated information with significant issues with quality, accuracy and completeness of information (Choice Magazine, March 2012). As domain names within .physio will be subject to controlled registration standards, policies and procedures, internet users will have greater confidence in the information that they receive about the physio profession; and
- competition: the .physio gTLDis anticipated to contribute to the initiatives of competition and consumer choice through its operation focused on promoting consumer trust and convenience. It may have the effect of instilling such initiatives between prospective registrants in the physio profession who have a choice of gTLDs with which to register. Increased trust in .physio gTLD will drive existing and new top level domain (TLD) registry operators to make improvements in mechanisms to improve consumer trust of their TLDs; and
- consumer choice: the proposed new gTLD will enable user-driven improvements and innovations, with specific relevance to the physio industry and related services, with second and third level domains to be registered by those associated with the physio profession. This will allow consumers more choice for interacting with the physio profession, as well as encouraging competition between members of the profession to best interact with such consumers. The .physio gTLD will operate with a restricted registration policy to have effective control over registration and use of the domain names, which will also contribute towards general service innovations on the internet.
It is difficult to anticipate the number of registrations in the restricted registry for .physio as the number may be determined by the effectiveness of marketing and the reception of internet users to the new gTLDs more generally. Projections for the number of gTLDs to be registered under .physio are based upon an estimated potential registrant population of 700,000, consisting of 600,000 physios, as well as an additional number of students, assistants, businesses and affiliates of the profession. The minimum estimated number of registrations for .physio in the first 3 years is 22,500 registrants or around 3% of the estimated potential registrant population of 700,000. The minimum estimate of 3% is considered reasonable based on the experience of small registries, such as .pro & .cat, in their first few years. It is anticipated that no more than 45,000 registrants (7% of the estimated potential registrant population) will register domain names in the .physio gTLD within the first three years.
In its endeavour to promote and expand the .physio gTLD, PhysBiz will continue to comply with all operational, technical & policy requirements, as well as maintaining consumer trust & the stability of the internet. PhysBiz will keep ICANN reasonably informed of any material developments relating to .physio gTLD including compliance with the continued operations instrument obligations as set out in Spec. 8 of the Registry Agreement.
The .physio gTLD will provide the opportunity to create relevant domain names for use including product, services or geographic names in the second or third level domain names. In accordance with registration policies and the proposed measures for the protection of geographic names as outlined in response to Q22, the .physio gTLD will allow the use of geographic names to localise its websites. The use of geographic names at the second level will be reserved for use by the relevant national member organisations of the World Confederation for Physical Therapy Member Organisation, which intends toconnect internet users with relevant information as applicable to the territory and comply with required rules and regulations in the national territory.
At this stage, the .physio gTLD does not intend to utilise Internationalised Domain Names at the second level. However, as the use of the .physio gTLD evolves, IDNs may be utilised within the domain space to allow internet users to engage with .physio and the physio profession in their native language, creating a more positive user experience & encouraging diversity.