back to article Europe dumps 300,000 UK-owned .EU domains into the Brexit bin

Brexit has hit the internet, and not in a good way. In an official statement Thursday, the European Commission announced it will cancel all 300,000 domains under the .eu top-level domain that have a UK registrant, following Britain's eventual departure from the European Union. "As of the withdrawal date, undertakings and …

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      1. Phil O'Sophical Silver badge
        Coat

        .eu is the country code top-level domain (ccTLD) for the European Union (EU).

        Now that's an interesting note, is that from an official EU document?

        European Union is an English phrase. Given suggestions from politicians within the EU that once the UK leaves they'll be able to forget about English, won't they then be "L'Union européenne", in which case they should take over ".ue" and force everyone to move to that. Problem solved! Well, except for Venezuela I suppose...

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          "once the UK leaves they'll be able to forget about English,"

          No they wont. Its still the defacto language of business, diplomacy and navigation. Using the language of a country not in the EU would probably save no end of EU bun fights too!

          1. Phil O'Sophical Silver badge

            No they wont. Its still the defacto language of business, diplomacy and navigation.

            Of course it is, not to mention being an official language of Ireland and Malta, but that didn't stop polish MEP Danuta Hübner (chairwoman of the European Parliament's constitutional affairs committee, no less) from proposing it, nor French MEP Jean-Luc Mélenchon supporting it.

            1. itzman

              that didn't stop polish MEP Danuta Hübner (chairwoman of the European Parliament's constitutional affairs committee, no less) from proposing it, nor French MEP Jean-Luc Mélenchon supporting it.

              Talk about Zen and the Art of deckchair rearrangement...

          2. Jess

            The French are highly protective of their language, no way will they be happy with the legacy of their relenting on their (ultimately proven justified) blocking the UK joining the EU being their language being of a lower status than before we joined.

            1. This post has been deleted by its author

            2. TheVogon

              ""The French are highly protective of their language"

              Because almost no one else cares about it. Whereas anyone who is anyone speaks English.

              See the future:

              https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gO_1dEOkb_U

        2. foo_bar_baz

          English

          Don’t be so self congratulatory. It’s called English but it’s really Merkin.

        3. codejunky Silver badge

          @ Phil O'Sophical

          "Given suggestions from politicians within the EU that once the UK leaves they'll be able to forget about English"

          At one point Junker was saying this in one of his speeches (I think to Italians or Spanish?) and to make his point he had to switch to English so he could be understood. It was almost like watching stupidity as a physical entity.

    1. TheVogon

      "I thought .eu was geographical, we will still be in Europe, we are not moving continent"

      It is. The geographical region is the European Union though not Europe.

      However as there are zero checks on the information that is provided on most DNS registrations and no reliance on it being a real address I imagine circa 300,000 registrations are going to get updated to exotic but genuine EU locations like Buggerru, Via dei cunt, Wank, Pissy, Anus, Arse, Barstardo, Bendova, Titz, Llabia, Piles, Fucking, Rectum, Poo, etc. etc. etc.

      1. M Mouse

        "exotic but genuine EU locations like Buggerru ..."

        I wouldn't waste my money but I can see how the idea may appeal to some.

      2. georgezilla

        " ... The geographical region is the European Union though not Europe. ... "

        So the Brits are rewriting history and redrawing all the maps?

        I though that the geographical region is Europe. And that the European Union was the union of countries that were IN Europe.

        The UK left the union, just how/why the eff did/do they think that when they left they should still get the perks. If I leave my current job, should I still get my health perks? Or keep getting the company to contribute to my retirement?

        You left the EU snowflakes. Suck it up and get over it FFS!

    2. casey1

      ' just will not be not part of this political union that turned into a monster.'

      So you will be part of it then ..

  1. Ian 69

    Honest question

    How much use do these domains get? I originally imagined it was primarily EU institutional organisations that would use that suffix and thought everyone else would be on .com/net/org or their country code but that doesn't seem to be the case.

    1. Phil O'Sophical Silver badge

      Re: Honest question

      I'm sure that many were registered by the "big names" just to make sure no-one else got them.

      The only truly EU ones are those under ".europa.eu" which is the EU administration itself.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Honest question

      Well I tried to register the .eu version of my ltd company name in the sunrise period (when those with a legitimate claim get priority subject to evidence and a higher fee). It's a made-up name and not registered in any other TLD except .com (with no web site).

      Jumped through all the hoops, paid the fee (£100 if I recall). Got no subsequent correspondence until at the very end of sunrise an email to say "rejected" no appeal, no reasons, no refund. By which time sunrise had ended and someone else had bagged it (but it's still not in use). I later found someone else with exactly the same story. Conclusion: an insider treated the applications as their way of identifying names he might be able to resell at an inflated price.

      Maybe a lucky escape for me except in practise .eu names are so seldom seen in real world use that ordinary internet users will regard with caution. When I did a search many of the .eu domains actually routed traffic straight to another TLD apart from "official" eu bodies. My advice is stick with .uk (or your own home country) or .com.

  2. Nick Kew

    It's not in anyone's interest to b***er up existing legitimate users.

    I expect this one will be relaxed as part of an eventual deal. At a guess, what'll happen is that the criteria for qualifying will require only token EU presence for existing good-faith users.

  3. EveryTime

    Isn't this trivial to bypass?

    It's typical for a single agent in Caribbean to have many thousands of corporations registered to their one room office. As long as each one pays their modest registration fee, the locals involved each pocket a bit of the money and pretends it's all above-board.

    Is it going to be that easy?

    And what is the perception there? Is this a F-off move? Or is it "if you leave it will be painful, so you might as well stay"?

    1. TheVogon

      "Isn't this trivial to bypass?"

      Yes, just lie.

    2. M Mouse

      "Is this a F-off move?"

      I'd say so, and good luck to them (I doubt any bargaining will make the burocrats alter their decision).

      I am rather surprised if the figure is as high as 300,000 and can imagine quite a few registrants being annoyed, both in being forced to lose the domain (when it happens) and because they are unlikely to have expected a "leave" result.

      I have only a marginal academic interest in knowing whether registrants bother to renew before their potential banishment from .EU registration, and would appreciate a link to anywhere which tracks the count of registrations, so as to see each "end of month" figure over the next 12-15 months...

      Those whose renewal is due within 3-6 months might simply renew, hoping there will be a delay before withdrawing their right to registration during the "transition period" while those in months 7 to 12 might be resigned to the fact that if the registration is simply cancelled, over 50% of what they paid will have been wasted, had they bothered to renew...

      To find they have been in use for 10+ years has been a bit of a shock to me as I have yet to see one in use.

    3. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

      "It's typical for a single agent in Caribbean to have many thousands of corporations registered to their one room office. As long as each one pays their modest registration fee, the locals involved each pocket a bit of the money and pretends it's all above-board.

      Is it going to be that easy?"

      Yes. Luxembourg and the other tiny nations in the EU already have form for this. Obvious example being Amazons "huge" European presence in Luxembourg.

    4. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      "And what is the perception there? Is this a F-off move? Or is it "if you leave it will be painful, so you might as well stay"?

      Its just mindless posturing - like virtue signalling but vindictive instead. Its just saying 'we have power, and we can use it,. so watch out'

      Its like watching a 5 year old saying 'if you don't buy me that raygun I will wet my pants an you will be sorry."

      To which one replies 'we would be more sorry if we bought you the gun. Piss away and by the way, change your own wet stinky underwear'.

      Is this really the best the EU can come up with as a disincentive? Commercial disruption to score a minor political point?

      It is truly pathetic.

      1. werdsmith Silver badge

        It is truly pathetic

        Why?

        One of the conditions of holding a .eu domain is to be homed in an EU state. If that condition is not met then the ownership is rescinded and is a natural and logical consequence. Nothing to do with vindictiveness.

        1. codejunky Silver badge

          @ werdsmith

          "One of the conditions of holding a .eu domain is to be homed in an EU state. If that condition is not met then the ownership is rescinded and is a natural and logical consequence. Nothing to do with vindictiveness."

          Interestingly this is actually theft. The service which has been paid for will not be allowed to go to completion nor will there be compensation for those losing the service they have paid for. All because we hurt their feelings.

          And while I doubt losing access to that TLD will be much of an inconvenience to the UK the willing theft by the EU, the act of doing this without consulting the people involved and the act of removing potentially a tenth of their easy income it does add another reason for private individuals and business to distrust the EU.

          1. werdsmith Silver badge

            Re: @ werdsmith

            Interestingly this is actually theft. The service which has been paid for will not be allowed to go to completion nor will there be compensation for those losing the service they have paid for. All because we hurt their feelings.

            It's nothing like theft, if you purchase the right to use the domain with a contractual condition that you agree to at the time of purchase, you break the contract you lose. Absolutely nothing to do with anyone's feelings, that's just juvenile thinking.

            1. codejunky Silver badge

              Re: @ werdsmith

              @ werdsmith

              "It's nothing like theft, if you purchase the right to use the domain with a contractual condition that you agree to at the time of purchase, you break the contract you lose"

              Well said. So where is the contract broken? The contract being private business/individual to EURid. This is the state (EU) dictating, to the surprise of EURid, that those private entities will have their service cut off without compensation for the loss of service from EURid.

              "Absolutely nothing to do with anyone's feelings, that's just juvenile thinking."

              So if you pay for something good or service you expect that to continue. Then you are told that although you made full payment you will only receive the service up to x date and you will not be compensated. The contract broke by the other party not you. And its not their fault but the state confiscating your product/service. Now what states in the world like to confiscate private assets? Venezuela comes to mind.

              Is the state confiscation of private assets something you agree with? Be honest. Yes and you justify such actions, no and your disagreeing with the EU.

              1. Roland6 Silver badge

                Re: @ werdsmith @codejunky

                Re: 'theft'

                I've not been able to track down a definitive source to say just what the ownership position is with respect to domain names. Although it seems they are being treated in the same way as telephone numbers, personalised numberplates etc. where you own the right to exclusively use etc. for the agreed term, but you don't actually own the number/registration outright.

                I suspect that EURid will take the easier path and simply apply the (revised) residency rule when the current registrant either wants to renew or transfer the registration. Given the maximum term is 10 years, this might take a while.

                I note the EURid T&Cs do grant EURid the right to change the registration rules and if you disagree then Belguim law applies...

  4. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    who cares, a .EU address is meaningless anyway. Just get a .com and be done with it.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      "Just get a .com and be done with it."

      People may assume you are in the US though and all the lack of data protection and poor consumer protection issues that go with it.

      1. Dodgy Geezer Silver badge

        Nonsense!

        The .EU registration stands for Europe - the .COM registration can stand for the Commonwealth.

        Perhaps we should set up a .EMP one for Empire?

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Let's register .ukip

      2. Wandering Reader

        People may assume you are in the US though and all the lack of data protection and poor consumer protection issues that go with it.<br>

        something.eu.com

        1. TheVogon

          "something.eu.com"

          If you want to ask the owner to rent you a subdomain ? It's not a TLD and is already taken.

      3. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        As opposed to having a post-Brexit ".co.uk" address once the US has Theresa May (or her similarly-incompetent successor) over a barrel and having to accept the US's piss-weak standards on numerous things- including lack of data protection and poor consumer protection issues that go with it?

        (And just a bit too f*****g late for them to realise why the US prefers to deal with smaller countries in desparate need of a deal indvidually rather than with a trading bloc comparable in size to itself.)

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          (And just a bit too f*****g late for them to realise why the US prefers to deal with smaller countries in desparate need of a deal indvidually rather than with a trading bloc comparable in size to itself.)

          That is true, in general, but now our Beloved Leader ["Not a bully at all"] thinks that bilateral agreements are better from everybody rather than multilateral deals. And he's going to negotiate them all himself cause he's so amazingly amazing!

      4. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        People may assume you are in the US though and all the lack of data protection and poor consumer protection issues that go with it

        Oh really?

        'people may' is shorthand for 'any idiot who stopped to consider knows that people wont., but I want to win the argument and perhaps no one will notice what a complete fool I am.

        try entering:

        bbc.com

        jaguar.com

        RollsRoyce.com

        samsung.com

        nissan.com

        in any web browser and watch as the reality that these are all American companies...dissolves into the fantasy of your fevered imagination.

        if you are international, you have a .com. I have a ,com. My old housename.com as it happens registered on a whim.

        Even http://youparklikeacunt.com is demonstrably British.

        1. Alphebatical
          FAIL

          > nissan.com

          If you'd bothered to actually visit your link, you'd realize that it does, in fact, belong to an American company.

        2. TheVogon

          "try entering:

          bbc.com"

          It redirects to bbc.co.uk

          Most of the others are placeholders for .co.uk sites or are the us site.

  5. Mephistro
    Facepalm

    I'm an European citizen and I hate Brexit and its perpetrators, ...

    ... but still can't see how this move could be described without using the words heavy handed, bullish and stupid!

    I hope this is just a move to apply more pressure on the ongoing negotiations, and that the EU will drop it as a token of good will before the final exit agreements are signed. Crossing my fingers on that one, though. 8^(

    1. Mephistro
      Angel

      Addendum:

      The ideal outcome would be that the EU backs down on this statement in exchange for some worthless trifle, like, say, the heads of BJ* and NF.

      * Note: Not our Big John!

      ;^)

      1. The Nazz

        Re: Addendum:

        Hey Mephistro, couldn't you europeans just take Tony Blair off our hands. Please. Pretty please.

        Apparently he'd make a fantastic President.

        Citation? His own verbals.

        1. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

          Re: Addendum:

          "Apparently he'd make a fantastic President.

          Citation? His own verbals."

          To give him his dues, he's said that almost since being a teenager and is still campaigning against Brexit. One of the few principles he's stuck by, even if it is for his own self interest. Few politicians manage to retain any principles for that long, even, or especially, the slim ones.

        2. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Addendum:

          "Apparently he'd make a fantastic President."

          How did he do as Middle East peace envoy? Last time I checked, the Israelis were still bombing, shelling and shooting the Palestinians on a daily basis.

    2. Martin-73

      Re: I'm an European citizen and I hate Brexit and its perpetrators, ...

      It's heavy handed, yes... but deserved. I have NO sympathy for my own country over brexit, but lay the blame where it belongs. At the feet of those who voted for brexit. They should never be allowed to forget their part in the economic damage they KNEW would happen. Vile people, every one

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Roll on Brexit

        It's not economic damage, it's economic realignment, think longer term. You may have forgotten that we made sacrifices when our economy was first aligned with the EEC, but soon made the best of it. The media is full of negative hype but this isn't a big deal. If you must have an .eu domain there are probably ways to have a representative in the .eu register it on your behalf.

        1. Martin-73

          Re: Roll on Brexit

          @ AC re: rep in the EU... i am speaking more broadly than the precise import of this article. If the brexit peeps stole my birthright? I think they need to be reminded of that at every single opportunity. Brexit was a selfish move by selfish people. With NO benefits for anyone. Period

          1. Dodgy Geezer Silver badge

            Re: Roll on Brexit

            Considering your comments, I feel that hurting you MUST count as a benefit....

      2. Mephistro
        Unhappy

        Re: I'm an European citizen and I hate Brexit and its perpetrators, ...

        Mmhh... I agree that brexiteers are to blame, at least partially, but given the unprecedented campaign of traditional media and social media manipulation perpetrated by the likes of Murdoch and Cambridge Analytica, there are far more important culprits.

        This doesn't bode well for our democracies. Our only hope is that this error will teach Brits -and the rest of Europeans- a few important lessons regarding the trust we can put on some media outlets, social media in general, and politicians giving easy solutions to complicated issues, in such a way that the next wave of populist maggots is received by "we the people" with a huge salvo of rotten vegetables.

        1. Stuart Grout

          Re: I'm an European citizen and I hate Brexit and its perpetrators, ...

          And you think that ignoring the will of the majority "bodes well for our democracies"?

          As for the "manipulation" of the vote the Remain campaigners with full backing of the Government and the BBC were far more influential and spent vastly more than the Leave campaign. They also used almost every "celebrity" to endorse Remain in addition to many world leaders to tell the British people what was best for us.

          But if you want to believe that the vote was stolen despite the overwhelming evidence otherwise then you really don't believe in democracy.

          1. Mephistro

            Re: I'm an European citizen and I hate Brexit and its perpetrators, ...

            And you think that ignoring the will of the majority "bodes well for our democracies"?

            Sorry, but your straw man is a stillborn. You'll have to make another one.

            What I think is that one of the sides (pro-Brexit) fed you -as in "you, the British public"- almost exclusively with a deluge of manipulation, misinformation and downright lies, while the other side told you mostly the truth, although in a clumsy and disorganized way. The Remain side didn't hire media manipulation outfits to reinforce your preconceptions and target your -"you, the voters"- psychological traits by caging you in in a myriad echo chambers, something they managed to do using lots of your stolen private personal data.

            ...and spent vastly more than the Leave campaign

            A big difference is that the Remain side did it by legal means and telling -mostly- the truth, while the other...

            As for the money spent... you aren't factoring what's owed to Murdoch and other similar scum for their role in this shebang. Unfortunately when you finally learn about the true price paid, it'll probably be too late to do anything about it.

            Seriously, mister Grout, if after all these months of information regarding the consequences of Brexit you can't still see how you have screwed up, perhaps it's you the one who hasn't got a clue about what a democracy is/should be.

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