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According to Wikipedia, .book is an existing top level domain. However, it apparently is not yet available for registration. I've been able to learn that Amazon bought the rights in 2014, but I can find no information on when the landrush will begin.

Is there any way to know when the landrush for .book will start? Is the timeline for this entirely up to Amazon, or are there e.g. ICANN regulations specifying when they have to start allowing registration of these domains?

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TL;DR: For now it probably qualifies as a closed generic, i.e. you will never be able to register a domain name there. But there is no clear definite explanation for now.

And the reasons are detailed below. The authoritative source on all of this is indeed ICANN (Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers), not ICAAN. Let us explore it.

Does the TLD exist at the DNS root?

First you can go to IANA website (IANA is a service/function of ICANN) to see if the TLD is live and already in the root:

https://www.iana.org/domains/root/db/book.html

Indeed, it was created ("delegated") on 2015-12-02, quite a long time ago.

This can also be easily checked by a DNS query:

$ dig +short book. NS
dns1.nic.book.
dns2.nic.book.
dns3.nic.book.
dns4.nic.book.
ns6.dns.nic.book.
ns5.dns.nic.book.
ns4.dns.nic.book.

So this just all means the TLD exists technically, which is no actual consequences for who can register domain names under it and when.

Has the registry published launch plans?

After ICANN signs the contract with the registry, and the TLD is published, there is no more control from ICANN on what the TLD does and when (as long as it stays inside the contract signed). It is true that once the contract is signed the registry has a given amount of time to become fully operational, which means having its nameservers and subsystems (whois, etc.) operational. But this is before publication in DNS root, we are past that.

In fact if you read http://domainincite.com/19673-foot-dragging-amazon-has-bumper-crop-of-new-gtlds you can see that Amazon was playing dangerously in that field:

The would-be portfolio registry had .author, .book, .bot, .buy, .call, .circle, .fast, .got, .jot, .joy, .like, .pin, .read, .room, .safe, .smile and .zero delegated to the DNS root zone.

Amazon seems to have waited until the last possible moment to have the strings delegated.

It signed its registry agreements — which state the TLDs must be delegated with a year — in mid-December 2014.

which is immediately followed by:

The would-be portfolio registry had .author, .book, .bot, .buy, .call, .circle, .fast, .got, .jot, .joy, .like, .pin, .read, .room, .safe, .smile and .zero delegated to the DNS root zone.

Amazon seems to have waited until the last possible moment to have the strings delegated.

It signed its registry agreements — which state the TLDs must be delegated with a year — in mid-December 2014.

A registry can as well sit on its TLD and then do nothing (but it still has to pay fees to ICANN, so it may not be a very good business decision).

If there are any, the launch plans are on ICANN "newgtlds" website: https://newgtlds.icann.org/en/program-status/sunrise-claims-periods

You can input "book" as TLD and search for results... there are none, the registry did not (yet?) announce to ICANN any plan to open.

Registries are required to publish dates in advance, 2 or 3 months before from memory.

Any TLD launch must start with a sunrise phase (2 options there) and then there is a claims phase that can be finite or indefinite. Some registries may also elect to do an "EAP" phase before the "GA" (Generic availability), in which for a few days all domain names are available... just at a higher price.

Remember also that not all gTLDs are equal: some are called "brand TLDs" or "Specification 13" TLDs. These were requested by brands (such as Amazon applying for .amazon in fact, but that specific case is far from resolved as it got objections from the South American continent governments), and brands most often want the TLD just for themselves, which means almost no one will be able to register a domain name in it.

There are other non-brands TLDs but still closed ones.

Do you know for example that Google has the .NEW TLD, which perfectly works (try https://docs.new/) but that does not mean it will be open to the public in any near future.

What the registry says

If you go back to first section about IANA you will see a link on the page, to the registry website: https://www.amazonregistry.com/

If you go there now, you will see some data about some other (including IDNs) TLDs, but nothing about .BOOK

The "Registrar resources" page says: Do you have a launch calendar?

We post important dates (such as launches), when those dates are available, on the NIC pages of our TLDs. Locate them at www.nic.[TLD] or click here for a complete list of TLDs scheduled for launch.

The link below "click here" shows all the other TLDs as open for registration, but nothing about .BOOK, and neither does https://nic.book/ as advised (an email address is provided to contact them and/or show your interest, you may try it, but YMMV).

So whatever happens or does not happen currently the registry does not say. A registrar may know more, so you could ask one of your preferred provider of domain name and see if they have better information to share (which also test the level of their customer service)

What the registry said in the past

Every new gTLD went into a standardized process at ICANN with an application. All of this material is stored on ICANN website.

So for Amazon's .book application you can read it at: https://gtldresult.icann.org/applicationstatus/applicationdetails/992

To reach it: go to https://gtldresult.icann.org/application-result/applicationstatus, enter 'book' to search, and then make sure to clean on the BOOK entry facing the Amazon submitter, as they were multiple applications

In fact, if you go to https://gtldresult.icann.org/applicationstatus/stringcontentionstatus and enter book you will see that they were 9 separate applications for .BOOK. There was no auction it seems, the others applicants just withdrew their applications at some point (see for example: http://domainincite.com/12888-ari-drops-book-new-gtld-bid)

Back to the application (first link), after clicking on "(download public portion of application) " you can finally really see what the applicant explained to ICANN to justify it wants to operate .BOOK and how it intends (at that time, 2012) to operate it (so of course things could change after, within some constraints).

An excerpt:

The mission of the <.TLD> registry is: To provide a unique and dedicated platform while simultaneously protecting the integrity of Amazon’s brand and reputation. A <.TLD> registry will:

• Offer a stable and secure foundation for online communication and interaction.

• Provide a platform for innovation.

This is then repeated verbatim or slightly changed multiple times. Just from the look of it, it does not really seem to describe an open TLD, or at least not in a clear form.

If you go back to the application you will see that "Rakuten, Inc." did object to this application. There was then a decision made by the International Chamber of Commerce you can read at https://newgtlds.icann.org/sites/default/files/drsp/15nov13/determination-1-1-1315-44051-en.pdf that finally let Amazon prevail and go forward with its application.

The objector feared monopoly position and a capture of a generic term "book" associated with a generic community that does not resume itself to one company, that may or may not fully represent it. It was dismissed basically on the ground that Rakuten does not define any better the community associated to an hypothetical .BOOK, but IANAL.

Even before that, others were not happy by many companies grabbing generic term and turning them in basically closed TLD, see for example: http://domainincite.com/10535-consumer-watchdog-slams-outrageous-google-and-amazon-keyword-gtld-bids

Consumer Watchdog, a California-based consumer rights advocacy group, has attacked Google and Amazon’s new gTLD applications in a letter to an influential senator.

[..]

Google and Amazon have separately applied for dozens of gTLDs — such as .music, .blog and .book — that they would exclusively use to market their own products and services.

And .MOI and .MOI and .MOI ...?

This is another Amazon TLD, and many think that it can be seen as an example of how future TLDs will be managed.

It stirred some controversies already as registrars where not happy with Amazon request (to ICANN) to basically control it more.

See http://domainincite.com/20320-registrars-say-amazon-is-closing-open-gtld

A group comprising some of the largest domain registrars has claimed Amazon is attempting to close off a new gTLD that it previously indicated would be unrestricted.

[..]

Neither Amazon nor the registrars care a great deal about .moi, I think. The gTLD is merely a canary for Amazon’s 30-odd yet-to-be-launched gTLDs. The company has the rights to potentially more attractive strings, including .book, .song and .tunes.

Amazon originally wanted to make these strings “closed generics”, or what ICANN calls “exclusive access” gTLDs, where only Amazon could register names.

It has since disavowed such plans, but still hasn’t said who will be able to register names in its portfolio or how they will prove eligibility.

.moi was not originally identified as a closed generic by ICANN, but it could represent a model for what Amazon plans to do with the rest of its stable.

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The Amazon strategy is very unclear: many TLDs of their TLDs offer the same page as this one http://nic.book/ (same for .YOU and a few other examples). I tried to do suggestions but...the guys in charge are moving and it is very difficult to reach out to the right person so I dropped it.

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