No Domains for Individuals in China

In the recent years, regulations come out like jokes. Everyday there are some national level regulations coming out to shock everyone – just like the jokes does, but not that fun.

From 9:00 December 14, 2009, no individuals in China can register a domain name in China. The interesting thing is, it is just a regulation for the Chinese domain registars. Anyone can easily register a domain via Internet from foreign providers like

They believe by controlling who can register domains, they can control the whole Internet.

10 thoughts on “No Domains for Individuals in China

  1. By tightening their censor over the internet all the time, the government might find itself making the internet in China more and more similar to what they have in North Korea, where the ‘internet’ is essentially just an intranet at the national level. I heard that the only website you can access in North Korea is the propaganda website about their great leader. Not sure how this can be verified though.

  2. All they are really doing is diminishing the value of .cn domains, the less people that register them, the less mainstream they will seem. As new innovative Chinese websites will all be .com, .net, etc.

  3. Recently ICANN approved non-Latin characters domain registars . So the one buying 八八.cn or 百姓.cn coud ask a fortune.

    As an web entrepreneur in China, how do these regulations (aka censorship) affect your life? I know some blogging platform (WordPress, blogger ) are blocked, what about the ebay or craiglist like. I’m just curious to hear from you.

    Raymond Chenon

  4. This is too bad… feels like things are going backwards. But frankly, in this area-media/publishing, it never went forward much… they might just haven’t realized how powerful internet could be till recently.

    This deal of “only” blocking Chinese domains seems matching some “trends” of the county… the “richer” layer of the society is “allowed” to have a “good” life…

  5. These new regulations came out too suddenly and panicked everyone. They should have been brought out more slowly with a consultation period for interested parties. Maybe the reason the regulations came into effect so fast was in order to avoid the possibility of much debate before they come into effect.

    Existing individual registrants will be able to keep their domains. As you say for .com, .net domains and so on people can just register new ones at a foreign registrarar so it won’t have much affect, other than to reduce the business of Chinese domain registrars. For .cn domains, individuals will not be able to register new ones any more (even at foreign registrars).

    There are positive aspects to this. A lot of criminals have been using .cn domains to commit crime (possibly registering the domains with a stolen credit card). The .cn TLD has hosted more than its fair share of criminal sites of various types (acording to a McAfee survey I saw). The new regulations will help put a stop to this in the .cn space at least.

  6. @Martin… interesting positive aspect! Are you saying China has more internet criminals than other regions?

  7. China always talks about cracking down on pornography, Internet addiction, online criminal activity — because these are topics that the public will rally for.

    But I think it’s just a ruse to cover up the fact that China censors political content.

    Because, well, come on…. There’s TONS of terrible, “yellow”, violent, sexually explicit stuff floating freely all over the Internet. There’s “fake news” and endless scams. But there is no real political criticism.

    So what do you think China is really cracking down on?


    A few of us Hong Kong bloggers were chatting about why we link to some Chinese blogs, but Chinese blogs rarely link back to us. Someone said it was snobbery. But I think it might be because we’re actually blocked.

    In the past, people have told me that my site is blocked. (It’s on Blogger). Can any mainland-based person here click on it and check?

  8. I did some research a while back (searched the net and downloaded lots of interesting articles by SE) and what I found was that “In order to promote the use of .cn domain name, China NIC gave away .cn domains in 1$ per cn price. No wonder there are so many *.cn domains related drive-by-infection(download)…

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