For a new TLD applicant who is creating a community application or standard application, obtaining the general support (or lack of objection resulting from consultation) from primary groups in the relevant community or stakeholders is a smart play. Many applicants have devised some constructive and mutually beneficial plans to grow broad support, often in equity or some entitlement to a pool of names in advance of the general availability to the public (if and when that comes).

I noticed what I think to be a very well executed and thoughtful execution of this with one of the applicants for a .MLS Top Level Domain.

The following press release came from the MLS Domains Association on August 10th, 2010, which I will narrate.

MLS Domains Association membership grows as special Founder claim period nears an end

Tempe, AZ – August 10, 2010 – MLS Domains Association now counts among its members the MLSs representing more than 511,000 of the nation’s MLS real estate brokers and agents. According to Bob Bemis, chairman of the board of directors of the organization, “We’re delighted with this response. Interest in our effort has grown continually over the summer. The industry is clearly ready to Take Back ‘MLS’!” Meanwhile, Founder members of the Association have claimed more than 70 domains on the ‘.MLS’ top-level domain during a special Founder claim period that ends on August 15.

Call to action + what does this have to do with me? Done. (Nicely played).

The MLS Domains Association is a not-for-profit membership association formed for the purpose of acquiring the ‘.MLS’ top-level domain. “Although we formed the Association with 15 of the leading large MLS in the country, our membership grew slowly at first,” Bemis said. “We have used the last few months to educate MLSs about our effort, and to help MLS executives lay out the value proposition with their boards of directors,” he continued. “Unfortunately, many of those boards meet only sporadically in the summer months,” he explained. In the last two weeks, the Association has welcomed new members such as Metrolist (CA, Founder member), Consolidated MLS (SC, Founder member), Sandicor (CA, general member), Great Plains REALTORS® MLS (NE, general member), and Florida Keys MLS (general member).

Hilight Non-Profit Status. Done.

Explain Hurdles to Membership Growth. Done.

Illustrate Momentum by mentioning at least 3-4 members. Done.

The Association is accepting all levels of members now, but Founder members are currently able to claim domains during a special claim period reserved for them. “Our Founder-level membership is attractive to MLSs that wish to claim a domain name that others may want or that wish to reserve several domain names,” said consultant Brian Larson, who is advising the Association. The Founder fee gives a member the same governance rights as the MLSs that formed the Association; includes a credit to claim up to 12 domains on the ‘.MLS’ top-level domain; and permits Founders to claim up to 10 domains now, during a special claim period, before general members are able to make claims. MLSs can join as Founders and claim domains during the special Founder claim period until 11:59 p.m. CDT on August 15.

Describe how to join in. Done.

Offer First Dibs on 12 Domain Names if you do join. Done.

Entice immediate action with Incentive : 10 extra domains. Done.

Organizations like the Midwest Real Estate Data LLC (MRED) have reserved a variety of names, like,,, and

Another member mention to further illustrate ‘traction’. Done.

Mention some specific domains so that the concept of the attraction is clear and the potential member starts to think about what they will grab in their list of 22 domains before anyone else. Done.

General members will be able to claim domains during a “General Landrush” running from September 1 through October 15. To claim a domain, an MLS must join the Association – annual dues vary based on MLS size. The MLS then pays a “claim fee” for each domain it wishes to claim. “The General Landrush will be attractive to smaller and medium-sized MLSs that want to secure their internet identities with only one or two addresses,” said Larson.

Prove it is real by stating dates.Done.
Just a personal note but this is a very slippery slope. ICANN has ceased communicating any static dates. Yes, this is necessary for getting any support or investment, but I and many others have been both embarrassed and unemployed as a result of expectations placed upon the communication of dates. Tread lightly.

Show reduced but still worthwhile benefits should someone join in some capacity other than founder. Done.

Identify membership is required to participate in TLD. Done.

Promote General Landrush. Done.

Identify Sunrise Process where intellectual property interests are addressed. X

Point out that you are “small” if you do not participate immediately. Done.

Further information is available on the MLS Domains Association Website,

Promote website. Done.

Further information is available on the MLS Domains Association Website,

Promote website. Done.