High cost cited for slow adoption of local domain name

Sunday February 2 2020

The cost of purchasing Rwanda’s domain name —

The cost of purchasing Rwanda’s domain name — rw remains relatively high. PHOTO | FILE 

JEAN-PIERRE AFADHALI
By JEAN-PIERRE AFADHALI
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The cost of purchasing Rwanda’s domain name — rw remains relatively high for most local businesses despite recent efforts by the government to promote its use.

However, officials maintain that some local businesses lack information to fully understand how the domain name works.

Rwanda Internet Community Alliance (RICTA), an organisation that represent the country’s internet Community said the country’s online identity that used by websites as Internet addresses dot RW has grown in the past years, reaching 4,418 registered domain names as of last week.

In an interview with Rwanda Today, Grace Ingabire, chief executive of RICTA, the body that manages dot rw said ignorance and myth are hindering the adoption of the country’s domain name as some people think the country’s online name is not accessible worldwide.

“The reasons some are not adopting the country’s domain name they were not aware that dot RW was accessible around the world,” said Ms Ingabire.

“People think that dot rw is limited to Rwanda geographically, they think dot com is worldwide,” she added. Other reasons cited that affected the adoption of the country’s domain name is the cost. People familiar with website’s hosting and domain said dot.

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com is cheaper than dot rw. The domain names are registered on annual basis. While .rw adoption could increase the country’s online identity and revenues from the sale of the domain names there have been reports of blocked websites raising concerns among Internet users because they could not access certain content.

The reasons were based on court decisions. The recent case is of Ugandan news websites that were blocked diplomatic differences between Rwanda and Uganda. Rwanda Utilities Regulatory Authority said it reciprocated the decision after seeking clarification on why Kampala had blocked the sites adding that there were ongoing negotiations with their Ugandan counterparts to unblock the websites.

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