Starting today noon, one can register a .ch domain name containing accented characters.
Technically a funny encoding is used at the DNS level – as if we needed additional ways to mess up with encodings ;-)
My guess is that, apart from 0.001% of additional visits to web sites from people who will try names like nestlé.com (once/if their browser and OS support it), after some time people will go back to unaccented names, as domain name holders will have to register them anyway to be on the safe side.
This morning there was a talk on the national radio where they said that a domain name is just an internet address. I wonder how many people will try to register their new accented-characters email address at switch.ch today :-)
More confusion ahead…
Update #1: according to switch this has been a success with 14’000 domain names registered 24 hours. I’m still skeptical but at least it is good money for them ;-)
Update #2: seems like not all big companies have been aware of this, an i18n-enabled whois search for nestlé.ch (as opposed to nestle.ch) shows a private address as the domain holder. Looks like lawyers might make some money out of this as well…