24 Apr 2020

Niue loses a legal battle for internet domain

4:04 pm on 24 April 2020

Niue has lost a legal battle to take back control of its internet domain from a Swedish company.

Niue's government had sought to wrest control of the .nu domain from the Swedish Internet Foundation, which has managed it since 2013.

Computer network

Photo: 123RF

A spokesperson for the company said the Stockholm District Court dismissed Niue's complaint because it lacked the legal capacity to be a complainant.

The court ordered Niue to pay the Swedish Internet Foundation nearly $US36,000 in legal costs.

When the action was first launched in 2018, Niue's Premier, Sir Toke Talagi, stated that the lawsuit was complex but worth it because of the large sums of money involved.

A Copenhagen-based lawyer who represented Niue's government, Pär Brumark, estimated Niue had missed out on around $US150 million over the past 18 years because it had never had control over its Top Level Domain, (cc TLD).

Many countries lost their cc TLDs during the 1990s and had been unable to get control of them because of the legal costs involved, he said.

'Nu' loosely translates to 'now' in Swedish which had helped lead .nu to become the third most popular Top Level Domain in Sweden after .com and .se.