Hello there! Have you been seeing .ME all over the place and wanted to find out what is it all about? Perhaps you are in the search of a domain name for your idea and you need more info? Whatever the case, you are at the right spot!
And here is a handy table of contents to make finding information you need easier:
- What is a .ME domain
- The company behind the .ME domain
- Our home country of Montenegro
- The .ME team
What is a .ME domain?
.ME domain is the country code top level domain (ccTLD) for Montenegro, globally available for registration without any restrictions. This means that anybody can register a .ME domain with their favorite registrar. In addition, despite being a ccTLD, .ME is very similar to generic TLDs in terms of policies, domain cycle, and SEO benefits and, most importantly, Google treats it like any other generic TLD.
We decided to open the domain for general public because the word “ME” carries meaning in English, Dutch, Italian, Spanish, Bulgarian, Serbian, Croatian, Portuguese and many other languages and we knew it would be popular.
.ME became generally available for registration in July 2008 and it was immediately recognized for its personal appeal by companies and individuals throughout the world. First 100.000 domains were registered in just 48 hours.
Today, .ME registrations come from all over the world led by the US, China, Canada, Great Britain, France, and Germany.
History of .ME domains
The first .ME domains, registered on March 24th, 2008, were “predsjednik.me”, “skupstina.me” and “vlada.me”, which, translated in Montenegrin language, means president, parliament and government. Shortly after that, we launched third-level domains available exclusively to Montenegrin citizens and companies. These are:
- .co.me, .net.me, .org.me, its.me and priv.me (for general use)
- .edu.me (for educational institutions in Montenegro), –
- .ac.me (for academic and post-secondary organizations such as universities; University of Montenegro has ucg.ac.me as its primary domain),
- .gov.me (for State and Government authorities)
On May 6th, 2008, we opened the so-called Sunrise period, a time where all eligible trademark holders, anywhere in the world, could apply for their .ME domains. In July and August of 2008, we organised over 2,500 land-rush auctions generating more than US$2,000,000 in revenue. Some of the most attractive .ME domains, such as Insure.ME and Sync.ME were registered during the Land Rush period.
.ME GA (general availability) period started on July 17th, 2008. Only 48 hours later our portfolio grew to 100,000 .ME domain names. We hit 1 million domains in 2016, which we owe to the growth of the domain name market in China. Unfortunately, that growth quickly slowed down and the domains did not renew so we ended up with “only” 900.000 domains in 2017. Since then, we have seen a steady growth of 6% per year.
Who uses .ME?
As the most personal domain extension on the market, .ME domain quickly became an online home for thousands of designers, developers, students and other tech-savvy people, who want to express themselves as individuals rather than to be associated with companies.
At the same time, companies who wanted to connect with their customers on a more personal level, build on their Me Selling Proposition, and create a community around their brands, started registering their own .ME domains.
Of course, actions of your customers always speak louder than words. That is why we are proud that some of the most renowned global brands have chosen .ME as their top domain name choice.
Way back in 2015, PayPal made a huge leap in personalizing their service and put the customer at the center of their brand by creating PayPal.ME, a service that generates personalized URLs which customers can use to get paid in one of the simplest and friendliest ways. The main idea was to create a mobile-first user experience that makes payments simpler and faster than with the company’s traditional tools.
But PayPal isn’t the only one that recognizes the potential of a .ME domain. Spotify personalized their business with a .ME domain by developing Spotify.ME, a service that reveals your music listening habits based on the songs, artists, and genres you’ve listened to on Spotify. About.ME uses .ME domain to build their personalized brand as a website that allows everyone to quickly and simply create a personal web page. Join.ME is a powerful tool for facilitating online meetings, screen-share, and collaborating by having the option to add notes and ideas to your project. The name really says it all!
The power of .ME brought another big player to the table. Have you heard about FB.ME and M.ME? That’s Facebook. They also put their trust in .ME, using FB.ME as the Facebook shortener for mobile devices, which automatically shortens a mobile link (for example a m.facebook.com link) to FB.ME link. With M.ME Messenger Links, aimed at businesses, users get a short and memorable link (m.me/username) that, when clicked on or typed in, opens a conversation with that business in Messenger. Yes, it’s that simple! And then there’s WA.ME, which Facebook uses for shortening WhatsApp links.
Speaking of social media, more than five top instant messaging applications use .ME to connect with the users. One of them is Line.ME, one of the most popular instant messaging apps in Asia.
We are trusted by the big players of the global market because, although .ME is a ccTLD governed by Montenegrin laws and regulations, we are committed to serving our community by aligning our policies with the industry standards, and making sure that we follow international policies and procedures.
Have some unanswered questions? Check out our frequently asked questions or reach out to us directly!
.ME as a Company
DoMEn d.o.o, the company that operates .ME, DoMEn d.o.o. is a company registered and based in Montenegro, and is founded by three companies:
- ME-net is a Montenegrin company with a long history in the ICT sector in Montenegro, which includes successful privatization of the country’s largest ISP.
- GoDaddy is the world’s largest domain name registrar and the largest paid Web host provider in North America.Afilias is a leading registry services provider that supports more than 13 million domains worldwide.
- Afilias is a leading registry services provider that supports more than 13 million domains worldwide.
The company is run with passion and heart. We consider ourselves intrapreneurs rather than employees and we practice what we preach – we make our jobs personal and want to make sure that every .ME fan and domain holder feels like a part of the team. Even though DoMEn d.o.o. is a B2B company, we aim to be human-to-human, so feel free to contact any of us when you want to share a story or ask a question.
To be the No. 1 personal domain name on the Internet.
We are dedicated to making .ME a safe neighborhood, one free from abuse, so that our users may focus on creating online identities that are true reflections of themselves and as unique as they are. There is a personal domain for everyone and our mission is to help individuals create their space online.
We consider the security and safety of our users are utmost importance. This is why we use a number of tools that regularly monitor our portfolio of .ME domains for spam, malware, phishing, and other malicious activities. More importantly, we do not hesitate to act upon any instance of abuse even if it means suspending thousands of domains.
In addition, we implemented DNSSEC. To protect our customers, we also offer Registry lock.
Values: What We Stand For
Making business personal. The idea of .ME being the most personal domain on the web goes deeper than its inherent meaning; it’s connected to the relationships we as a company nurture with our business partners and users. We pride ourselves on making our business human by removing barriers between our registry and .ME domain holders.
Protecting .ME neighbourhood. We are doing our best to keep our neighbourhood safe and secure to ensure the quality of .ME domain name space. We check .ME domains for abuse on a daily basis, and we suspend domains whose practice and content goes against our policies. We also made additional security-oriented services such as DNSSEC and Registry Lock available for our domain holders.
Giving back to the community. Whether it is about teaching middle-school children how to code, organizing pitching workshops for startups, or awarding scholarships to gifted students, we believe that sharing knowledge is the most efficient way to individual and collective progress. While our CSR efforts are primarily focused on our home country of Montenegro, we try to be as active as possible in all .ME communities around the world.
One of the areas that we are as passionate as talking about .ME domains is giving back to the community we originate from – Montenegro. When we first started off .ME, we knew it was not only an opportunity to develop a healthy business but also a platform to raise awareness in Montenegro about the benefits of the digital world and equip people with skills needed to successfully navigate it. This has been an integral part of our company strategy and mission in the last decade.
Our CSR strategy is based on three major pillars:
- Educating young people in a way that teaches them how to code and inspire them to pursue a career in tech.
We firmly believe that this is a necessity if we, as a society, want to go in step with modern trends worldwide. We have established strong partnerships with relevant faculties in Montenegro across universities and schools. For example, each year, dozens of Montenegrin students attend our programming school, making it a proper introduction to the world of tech and introducing them to their possible career path.
- Introducing the benefits of the digital world for Montenegrins, their businesses, and everyday life.
The digital world removes boundaries – by using a digital world you can make your business relevant worldwide, an opportunity we encourage everyone to embrace. It allows you to reach partners, customers, and clients irrelevant to their country of residence. More than that, the digital world is a world we all share and, by being part of it, you get more connected and thus similar to your peers in different parts of the world. You learn from them, and they learn from you. This was our primary motivation when we first initiated the Spark.me conference six years ago.
- Sharing our experiences, contacts, and know-how to support our colleagues in the tech industry in Montenegro, and our friends and partners to develop their ideas further.
We work directly with the startup community, but also with investors and international organizations to help build a healthy startup ecosystem through improving legislation, encouraging foreign investments, and providing advice and mentorship. Some of the brightest examples of Montenegrin startup community developed their ideas and got connected with their investors through relationships we helped them establish. Every time we see them go a step further, we feel like our mission in Montenegro grows stronger.
Read more about the CSR activities we have invested in over the previous 10 years in our CSR report. Want a bit more info? Here is a fancy timeline. 🙂
Montenegro (Crna Gora in Montenegrin, which means Black Mountain) is a small country, in Southeastern Europe on the Adriatic Sea, with little more than 620 000 people. Still, it is famous for its natural beauty and long, rich, history. Nowadays, Montenegro is getting recognized for one more thing – .ME domain.
It all started shortly after Montenegro gained independence in June 2006, when the ISO 3166 Maintenance Agency assigned our emerging nation the country code “ME”. Proud of the country’s new-found sovereignty, the new government of Montenegro took important additional measures to formalize the country’s fledgling independence. One such step was to submit an application to IANA for delegation of .ME as the country’s Top Level Domain (TLD). The delegation was finally approved and took place in September 2007.
The coastal region of Montenegro (72 km/45 mi of beaches with many well-preserved old towns) is considered one of the top up-and-coming destinations in travel industry. Sveti Stefan, a Montenegrin peninsula and a hotel resort, was featured on the cover of the National Geographic Traveler (edited once in a decade). The magazine, by the way, listed Montenegro among the “50 Places of a Lifetime”.
Montenegro was also included in “10 Top Hot Spots of 2009” to visit by Yahoo Travel, and it was described as the second fastest growing tourism market in the world (falling just behind China). It consistently ranks among top places to visit by prestigious tourism guides like Lonely Planet along with Greece, Spain, and other Mediterranean countries.
Montenegro had a tumultuous history, from being a part of Byzantine Empire to be partly occupied by Ottoman Empire, Venetian Republic, and Austro-Hungarian Empire, to becoming an independent country recognised by the Great Powers at the Congress of Berlin in 1878. This influence of different civilizations can be seen (and felt) in the richness of culture, differences in architecture, and diversity of food.
.ME is a team of passionate and creative professionals that work hard on providing you with an easy way to market yourself and your business online and tools necessary to reach your personal and professional goals.
We are also a team of intrapreneurs with each of us having projects we are passionate about and responsible for. We aim to cultivate the culture of openness and challenging the status quo, and we like to think that we are succeeding.
Board of directors
Desiree Evans Milošević, President of the Board a Special Advisor to the chair of the UN’s IGF, a member of the board at ISOC
James Bladel, Member of the Board of directors
Vice President of Policy at Godaddy
Oleg Obradović, Member of the Board of directors
Head of Business development in EMEA
Head of Business development in Asia
Business development consultant in North America