A new Internet project developed by French player OP3FT is emerging, which concerns the “Frogans” technology. This project was presented officially in January this year.
The Frogans technology is an alternative web that will operate in parallel with the conventional domain name structure we all know (i.e.: www.trademark.extension).
The new web address is composed of 3 different parts, as follows:
– a root
– an asterisk (*)
– a declension
Example: If we reserve the “WebInlex” root, according to the Frogans technology the possible declensions could be as follows:
WebInlex*offers (for a webpage dedicated to WebInlex offers)
WebInlex*contacts (for a webpage presenting the WebInlex team)
WebInlex*referencing (for a webpage dedicated to referencing rules)
WebInlex*socialnetworks (for a webpage dedicated to social networks)
Etc., with infinite variations.
Unlike with domain names, users will have to reserve the root (i.e. “webinlex” in the above example), and then the declension (e.g. “offers” in the above example).
To draw a parallel with current practices, it can be said that this system would somewhat operate like sub-domains.
The system is described in the following, rather minimalist, although exhaustive website: https://www.frogans.org/fr/main.html.
Without going into the technical details, the major three advantages of the Frogans technology would be the following:
– The visual composition of the websites is accessible and convertible on all types of media (smartphone, computer, tablet…), which will reduce costs while offering a single simplified version of the website for developers
– The Frogans addresses will be open to all international alphabets, thereby giving access to the whole world
– There will be an infinite number of possible web addresses, which would be particularly interesting, considering the saturation of current domain names
Today’s Internet does not currently offers the 3 benefits described above, which Icann regularly strives to provide with varying degrees of success (opening of special characters, new extensions…), although the existing system was created more than 25 years ago!
Like in the current domain name reservation system, OP3FT offers a “sunrise” period to trademark owners, for them to gain priority on these new web addresses. You can thus make priority reservations until 15 June 2015, before waiting for the official opening, for approximately 2 K€ (this price may vary according to Registers) for a root (e.g.: “webinlex”) and a few dozen euros per declension (e.g.: “offers”). Only a few registration offices have been selected by OP3FT to proceed with these reservations.
The Frogans system has also adopted the Uniform Domain Name Dispute Resolution Policy (UDRP), for application in case of the fraudulent reservation by a third party of a name that is identical or similar to an existing trademark (2 arbitration centres are currently authorised: the Asian Domain Name Dispute Resolution Centre and the National Arbitration Forum).
It is essential, in order to reach a proper trade-off between the financial cost and the actual marketing benefits, to first fully analyse the company’s requirements, so as avoid getting lost in the many offers available on Web 1.0.
It must also be emphasized that OP3FT has positioned itself on the new extensions, with “.frogans” (so the current system has not yet been edged out…). However, we should welcome this French project its performance level and the initiative, on which it would seem that OP3FT has been working for more than 15 years (the Frogans trademark was filed with INPI on 3 August 2000, before extending to the EU countries).