Frequently Asked Questions
Registering Your Business on the Internet

Is it necessary to register our company name and product names with the Internet if we have already filed these names with the state and the U. S. Trademark office?
The Internet is world-wide and anyone from any country can register and begin using any previously unregistered name. Name registration is on a first-come-first-served basis and the user has exclusive use of a registered name forever. It is difficult, if not impossible to prevent someone from using the name you want. Abbreviations and shortened names are commonly used instead of full corporate names, so the best name to use on the Internet might be an original new name. For example: XYZ Widget Company might choose "bestwidget.com" or "xyzwidget.com" - both names never previously used or registered.

We are not currently using the Internet. Is it advisable to register our current name or an abbreviated or shortened name right now?
Yes. E-mail usage (electronic mail from computer to computer) is on the rise and will likely become more common than regular mail in the years ahead. It has been predicted that E-mail will become the standard way for businesses to communicate within the next year. Your company's address on the Internet (your registered name) will become your company's written identity in the future. Therefore, it is extremely important to pick a good name that is as closely associated to your company name as possible and secure it quickly to prevent another company from registering it first.

Exactly how are company or product names used on the Internet and World Wide Web? What is a "Domain Name"?
The names are used in your E-mail address and your World Wide Web (WWW) address. All e-mail addresses are in the form: 'person@company.com' where com stands for commercial (ex. 'jsmith@xyzwidget.com'). Other endings are gov for government agencies; edu for educational institutions; and net for large computer networks. The portion after the @ (company.com) is the "Domain Name". The Domain Name is the portion that must be registered before being used on the Internet. On the World Wide Web, companies can display "pages" or electronic brochures describing their products and/or services. This is the part of the Internet that is growing rapidly every day with many companies installing their own pages. The addresses for all pages on the WWW are in the form: 'http://company.com/pagename'. As you can see, the Domain Name is used as part of the WWW address also.

With whom is the Domain Name registered?
An organization called InterNic keeps the central list for the thousands of host computers on the network. Anyone can register a name; however, the process is fairly complicated and time-consuming. You must specify your host computer's numerical address, hardware and software, as well as the same information for your backup host computer. As a service to our customers, Dream Communications will register a name for you using our own computer configuration. All you have to do is fill out the registration form enclosed.

If Dream Communications registers a name, who will own it?
You will. Your company name or personal name will be registered as you list it for each name on the registration form. You are free to change the designated host computer at any time. All rights and responsibilities regarding registered names will remain with you, the customer.

Can two companies have the same Domain Name?
No. The Domain Name is your unique address and all computers on the Internet will use it to direct traffic to you. However, there only need be a slight variation to create a unique Domain Name. For example, each of the following can be registered: xyz.com; x_y_z.com; x-y-z.com; xyzinc.com, and are all considered different names. It is a good idea to register several variations of your chosen Domain Name to prevent others from using them and creating confusion in the marketplace.

What about upper and lower case characters, spaces, underlines, or punctuation in a Domain Name?
For Domain Names, the computer does not differentiate between upper and lower case characters, so most names appear in all lower case; however, you can register your name in all upper case or a combination of both. Spaces, commas, and periods cannot be used. Underlines can be used instead of spaces but they are often confused with dashes and should be avoided.

Does my personal name, shown to the left of the Domain Name in my e-mail address, need to be registered?
No. It is up to your company to assign the names shown to the left of your Domain Name. Once the company has a Domain Name, you can assign as many individual names as you need for the portion of the name to the left of the @. For example: sales@company.com; info@company.com; employee1@company.com; employee2@company.com; employee3@company.com, etc.

I am already using E-mail. If I set up a Domain Name, can E-mail addressed to the new name be forwarded to my current address?
Yes. This is one of the advantages of having your own Domain Name. With a registered Internet Domain Name you will be able to receive E-mail regardless of the Internet service that you use and you can print the Domain Name on your business cards or letterheads without concern that you might change Internet services in the future.

Can't I simply use the existing E-mail address I have on AOL or another on-line service for business purposes?
You can; however, most businesses want to create their own identity and not advertise AOL every time they publicize their E-mail address. Also, many on-line services do not allow you to use your own personal name to the left of the @ and they have a "home use" connotation (i.e., a string of numbers or letters) that is not very professional.

What will it cost my company to become a part of the Internet and the World Wide Web?
The process of doing a Domain Name search is a free service provided by DreamCom. Registration of up to five Domain Names is $25.00 each, payable to Dream Communications, Inc., plus the $70.00 InterNic registration fee for the first two year period with an annual renewal of $35.00 after two years. Web Page creation fees are based on the individual needs of the person or company who wants the site. Prices will depend on the amount of information that is contained and the number of links made to additional pages. Remember, it is best to start slow and get help as you proceed. We will be more than happy to help you prepare for the future. Begin by selecting a name and we will assist you from there.

At what point can I print my new E-mail address on my business cards and letterheads?
We suggest that you wait until you have received written notification from us that your preferred name has been approved before you have anything printed. We will confirm your name registration as soon as possible.

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