With Chinese athletes winning more gold medals in Athens, some enterprises in China have begun making a bid to cash in on the victories by hurrying to register domain names featuring the names of China's Olympic champions.

Currently, "Duli.cn" and "Wangyifu.cn" have been registered, both by a company from Xiamen. In order to protect the domain name and due interests of the concerned athletes, CNNIC (China Internet Network Information Center) and the General Administration of Sports jointly made an announcement yesterday that they would be protecting such domain names. CNNIC declared it would make these domain names exempt from the registration and management fees, and would give them to the champions for free use.

However, according to professionals, Chinese laws do not actually allow the individual registration of Chinese domain names, making it impossible for the domain names to be passed to the champions. Instead, they must be reserved by the General Administration of Sports on behalf of the athletes themselves.

In any case, this event has caused wide concern from the general public and has once again put Chinese domain names in the spotlight and also sparked a fresh debate over the problems of brand protection.


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