Criteria to Demonstrate Reasonable Relationship between a Domain Name and a Registrant

Version 1.1 Date 1/1/1432 AH 07/12/2010

Introduction

  1. Applying the text of paragraph (7/3) of the regulation of domain name registration in Saudi Arabia, which requires that the domain name should have some reasonable relationship to the Registrant. This document shows some criteria to demonstrate this relationship, without prejudice to the terms and conditions mentioned in the registration regulations. Please note that these criteria are under continuous changes and updates. The latest version will be used in case there is suspicion in the relationship between a domain name and the Registrant.
  2. Criteria identified in this document are considered guidelines. They are made available to help the registrant to select a domain name to be registered. They do not give the right to register a domain name or to keep an already registered one. Also, they do not give the right to infringe on the rights of others. The Registrant should take appropriate means to preserve and protect the names to be registered.
  3. The Registrant is responsible to provide proof of the existence of the relationship between domain name and the Registrant. SaudiNIC has the right to use this document to validate (periodically or randomly) the existence of the relationship even after a domain name has been registered. Also, it can be used by CITC in the event of objection to the registration of the domain name.
  4. Each domain name application will be assessed on its own merits. It is not acceptable for the registrant merely to refer to previous registration in order to support their claims. For example, the mere fact that a registrant called “Zaid for Construction & Real Estate” was able to register “ZaidHouses.com.sa” is not sufficient to support the claims of “Amer for Construction & Real Estate” to register “AmerHouses.com.sa”.

the criteria for the relation is defined in the following points :

1: Relationship with the registrant name

  • The label should be an exact match of the registrants name An “exact match” is where the label of a requested domain name matches one or more of the words comprising the name used by the registrant (in English or Arabic) to establish their eligibility. The words must be used in the same order as they appear in the name. Furthermore, it should represent the name without confusion.
  • The label should represent a valid abbreviation of the registrants name This might be tremendously true for the Latin domain names but not for the Arabic domain names. This is due to the characteristics of the Arabic language where abbreviations and acronyms are not widely used. The following points provide more details:
  • An abbreviation is to form a new word from two or more different words. It represents or stands for the complete form (for both sides meaning and form). For example, “Email” is an abbreviation of “Electronic Mail". Forms of popular abbreviation:

Form 1: Abbreviation that represents the first letter in a word, such as:
- meter = m
- page = p
- Fahrenheit = F
- North = N

Form 2: Abbreviation that consists of the first letters of the word (provided it is common practice), such as:
- Continued = cont
- International = Inter
- volume = vol
- Network = Net
- Honorable = Hon
- Thursday = Thurs

Form 3: Abbreviation that consists of several letters of the word placed in no particular order (provided it is common practice), such as:
- assistant = asst.
- department = dept
- kilometer = km
- tablespoonful = tbsp
- sergeant = Sgt

  • An acronym is a word formed out of the initial letters of each word of a phrase, e.g.:

- Network Information Center = NIC
- Member of Parliament = MP
- compact disc = CD
- His / Her Royal Highness = HRH
- very important person VIP

  • There are a few types of shortcuts that fall under this type, which includes a second letter from one of the words in the manual. For example, the shortcut word: Bachelor of Science is: BSc
  • When abbreviating, no need to pay attention to certain phrases such as (ltd, co., owned by) nor to the pronouns such as (a, an, the, of, with, ...).
  • In the Arabic language, the use of abbreviations are semi-rare, and examples of short words in Arabic are:

- ت = تليفون
- ص ب = صندوق بريد
- س ت = سجل تجاري
- ذ م م = ذات مسؤولية محدودة
- كم = كيلو متر
- سم = سنتيمتر

  • Hence, a label that represents an abbreviation formed in a logical manner (in form and meanings) from the complete form of a name which belongs or relates to a registrant can be used. It should represent it in a clear manner using one or mixing of the above mentioned methods. The formation connection is established, for example, when parts of the words are used (Network is abbreviated as Net), when an alternative word is used (For you is abbreviated as 4u) or when acronyms is used. The meaning connection is established by the accepted dictionary definition of the abbreviation compared with the original phrase. For example, the domain name (SaudiNIC.net.sa) is an abbreviation label for the Saudi Network Information Center, so that SaudiNIC represents the center in both form and meaning.
  • The label should be derived from the registrants name, The purpose of this criterion is to allow some flexibility for a Registrant who wishes to register a domain name that is derived from its official name. This includes Transliteration, Romanization, translation, or adding to it some words that are related to the Registrant or its activities. There might be a need to submit documents to demonstrate the connection either at time of registration or after.
  • For the purpose of clarifying the first criterion (Relationship with the registrant name), here are some examples of acceptable and unacceptable domain names:

    The official name of the entity  (شركة السعادة الأبدية للتجارة - Eternal Happiness Company for Trading ) , it is known by Ehco (إهبكو) 

Acceptable Examples:
- شركةالسعادةالأبدية.السعودية
- شركة-السعادة-الأبدية.السعودية
- شركة-السعادة.السعودية
- سعادة-أبدية.السعودية
- سعادةأبدية.السعودية
- سعادة.السعودية
- منتجات-السعادة-الأبدية.السعودية
- إهيكو.السعودية
- Eternalhappiness.sa
- Eternalhappiness.com.sa
- Eternal-happiness.sa
- happiness.sa
- AlSaadah-Alabadiah.sa
- Sa3dah.sa
- ehc-portal.sa
- ehc.com.sa
- ehco.sa
- ehc.sa
- eh.sa
- aa.com.sa

Unacceptable Examples:
- س-أ.السعودية
- سا.السعودية
- ec.sa
- hec.sa
- شركة.السعودية
- للتجارة.السعودية
- السعادة-عقارات.السعودية
- Company.sa
- HappinessMarriage.sa

2: Relationship with the registrant trademark

  • The label should be an exact match or derived from a trademark belongs to the registrant, The label of requested domain name must exactly match a the registrant trademark without an addition or deletion, with the exception of letters or symbols that cannot be used in domain names (such as the following symbols: $, @, &?, <) .
  • The label can be derived from the trademark by deleting some of the letters or words, or by adding any word or symbol to the trademark. This includes writing the trademark using Transliteration or Romanization, but does not include the use of abbreviations. There might be a need to submit a clarification to demonstrate the connection between the selected domain name and the trademark. For the purpose of clarifying the second criterion (Relationship with the registrant trademark), here are some examples of acceptable and unacceptable domain names:

The trademark : (وطني) In Arabic and it is registered to (شركة السعادة الأبدية) under the category (Food )

Acceptable Examples:
- وطني.السعودية
- وطني-السعادة.السعودية
- أغذية-وطني.السعودية
- watany.sa
- HappinessWatany.sa
- HappinessWatanyFoods.sa

Unacceptable Examples:
- ناشونال.السعودية
- National.sa
- hw.sa

The trademark  (Eternal Happiness) In English and it is registered to (شركة السعادة الأبدية)

Acceptable Examples:
- إيتيرنال-هابينيس.السعودية
- Eternal-Happiness.sa

Unacceptable Examples:
- السعادة-الأبدية.السعودية
- EH.sa


3: The label should have a close and substantial connection to the registrant

The purpose of this phrase (close and substantial connection) is to allow some flexibility for registrant who wishes to register a domain name that is related to the Registrant but not directly related to its official name or trademark. There might be a need to submit clear statements and documents to demonstrate the connection at time of registration. This will include the following:

  • What does the name to be registered represent? (i.e., the letters and words composing the domain name stands for what?)
  • Explain the purpose of registration of this name and its relationship to the Registrant.
  • Identify what are the services that will be provided through the registration of this name, and who are the target population for these services.

The phrase (close and substantial connection) implies that the label is related or linked to the registrant products or activities without confusion or abbreviation. It should not infringe on others rights. Examples of  (close and substantial connection) can be:

  • a product that the registrant manufactures or sells;
  • a service that the registrant provides;
  • an event that the registrant organizes, conducts, or sponsors;
  • an activity that the registrant facilitates, teaches or trains;
  • a venue or a project that the registrant operates; or
  • a profession that the registrants employees practice


4: Individuals

Individuals can register under the following domains (pub.sa, .sa, or .السعودية) personal names, as expressed in the regulations as follows:

  • Individuals may register personal names, whether first or family name (e.g., Ahmad, Ali or Alfulani). The chosen name should be followed by at least one numerical digit. Combining two or more names together is allowed without using numerical digits.
  • Individuals can register other domain names provided that thay do not infringe others’ rights. They should also provide answers to the following points:
  • What does the name to be registered represent? (i.e., the letters and words composing the domain name stands for what?)
  • Explain the purpose of registration of this name and its relationship to the Registrant.
  • Identify what are the services that will be provided through the registration of this name, and who are the target population for these services.

To clarify this, let us assume the following example where the Person Name is : (أحمد الفلاني ) Ahmad Alfulani :

Acceptable Examples:
- ahmad7.pub.sa
- alfulani01.sa
- أحمد7.السعودية
- ahmadalfulani.pub.sa
- أحمد-الفلاني.السعودية

Unacceptable Examples:
- أحمد.السعودية
- الفلاني.السعودية
- ahmad.sa
- alfulani.sa