The company wants to mark terms like blockchain and crypto for domain name registration.
Unstoppable Domains, a company that offers blockchain-based alt-root domain names, has filed 21 trademark applications in Canada covering its top-level domains and the Unstoppable brand. The company also recently registered a U.S. trademark for the term blockchain, claiming priority over its Canadian trademark application. The applications cover domain registration services.
The company has previously tried to register terms such as crypto, doge, nft, and blockchain, as well as each version preceded by a period, with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office. But the USPTO does not grant marks for words that function as top-level domains.
Unstoppable’s Canadian brand filings last month include 888, bitcoin, blockchain, coin, crypto, dao, nft, wallet, x, zil, as well as each of them with a dot in front of them. She also filed a trade mark application for unstoppable.
I can think of two reasons why Unstoppable Domains files these marks. First, he wants to prevent other companies from creating alt-root domains that match his own. Alt-root domains that operate outside of the primary DNS are unregulated, so there’s nothing stopping another company from starting a domain that ends with one of these extensions that Unstoppable is developing.
Second, it may be part of a futile effort to prevent other companies from requesting these terms in “real” top-level domains in the future. Companies have tried to anticipate conditions ahead of the next round of TLD expansion in 2012. The effort failed.
The reality is that many companies will likely request some of these same conditions during ICANN’s next expansion cycle. They will sell a lot of money. Once these go into real root, it will create name collisions with the alt-root domains that Unstoppable has created.