Turkey name change could free up gTLD string
Turkey is changing its name to Türkiye, which could free up its old name to new gTLD applicants in the bird-killing industry.
The Turkish government has reportedly submitted a formal request to the UN for the change, which is intended to bring it more into line with the Turkish name and pronunciation — “Turkey-YAY”, apparently — and to disassociate it with the poultry and its disparaging connotations.
That could mean that one day the old spelling will cease to be a reserved string under ICANN’s new gTLD program rules.
The version of the Applicant Guidebook from 2012 bans applications for strings that match country names on the ISO 3166 list, translations and variants, as well as names by which a country is “commonly known” as evidenced by its use by an intergovernmental or treaty organization.
If everybody plays ball and starts calling the nation Türkiye instead, those provisions may no longer apply and new gTLD consultants may want to put their feelers out to Bernard Matthews.
The old name could remain banned if the ISO decides to keep the name on its “exceptionally reserved” list. As of today, the 3166 standard still lists the old name on its primary list.
The new spelling almost certainly won’t have any effect on the country’s ccTLD, which is .tr.
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