6
A-C-E
9d

Does anyone who owns a .de (German) domain name know how the system works for registering those domains?

I am looking at a name on Namecheap and it says non German citizens can register one but they need an admin contact in Germany so they have somewhere to send legal stuff if you misuse the domain.

As far as I can find it also says that Whois privacy services aren’t allowed for some reason.

I have some family in Germany that I could ask to be my admin contact, however I dont want to expose their information by not using a privacy service.

My questions are:

1) are you in fact not allowed to use a privacy service?
2) how strongly do the German registers care? I.e. if I were to put down a non German address would it matter if I don’t plan to use the domain for anything unreasonable?

3) anything else I should know about owning a .de domain?

Comments
  • 0
  • 4
    1. You are
    2. No experience
    3. You need a registered address in Germany. Most providerd provide a trustee service for this.
  • 1
    @linuxxx are you aware if Namecheap does this? Or do you have any other registrars you’d recommend?
  • 1
    1. I found out after signing up. Now not everyone can look whois up so idc. But I've seen de sites with these proxy-admins.

    2. legally you need to do it because if denic sends a letter and doesn't get reply, you're fucked.

    3. Pretty much similar to any other domain types I think.
  • 1
    @BambuSource 1) what did you find out?

    2) can’t/won’t they send snail mail internationally or use digital means?
  • 0
    Register your domain at inwx.net, I never had any trouble with them.
  • 5
    You don't need a whois privacy service for de domains. Previously it wasn't possible for de domainsybut since gdpr it's not possible to look up your information without a legal order to do so.
  • 5
    Remember that if your website is even slightly directed at german visitors, you are legally required to put your contact data on your website and have at least two different real time contact options
  • 0
    @Alice Could you give me a source to the second statement?

    How do you define directed to German visitors"? For example, would you consider your website "directed to German visitors"? - what if your main language (root index) would be english?

    I'm currently remaking our website (the active one is probably illegal on so many levels lol) and I have no idea where to find what I need to do for GDPR stuff. I wish I could turn 1&1 Analytics off and withdraw from any cookie-popup stuff. But I'll probably use localstorage just to store that the user clicked "ok", without reading some popup.
  • 4
    @BambuSource Search for impressumsrecht or something similar. It's there for a looooong time and only got sightly rewritten over time. Only private websites and websites not directed at german visitors are not required to have this. But the catch is: A private website as germany imagines doesn't exists. Every website counts as required to have this, if it isn't a private family website with a big login form. And even then it is possible for a greedy lawyer to bend the law and say it is in fact not private.
  • 0
    @A-C-E 1) I found out (2y ago or something) - WOA! My physical address is visible for anyone who uses whois! (me being scared for a day) - Woa, I can look up who owns this phishing website from this mail: Oh no.. There's no name of an actual company/person there but a name of a privacy proxy company. (or something like that)

    2) I never got a mail. But I think that they will if they know that you exist. And since you have to enter a german address, they'll probably send it there. I haven't checked if there're alternatives though (since I'm german lol).
  • 4
    @BambuSource If your main website is english, BUT you offer a german version with its own additional content, it is clearly directed people from germany, if it is also running under a de domain and everyone would be able to easily prove that you only wanted to bypass the law by changing the main language.
  • 0
    @Alice But if I do have a english website and only additionally a german version (on a de domain, I know: not best practice) with no original de content, that should be fine?

    Anyways, I'll probably follow the trend and annoy the user with a popup and use the same generators everyone is using to put the same text everyone is using about the same services everyone is using in my "legal" subsite...

    thanks for your advices ;3
  • 4
    @BambuSource It depends on the situation. If you offer services that are available if you are from germany, it's also directed at germany. If you mainly publish articles and stuff in english and then -maybe- translate them to german later on, you have a possibility to get away with it.

    In the end you will never know what a greedy lawyer will make out of your case. Since you are already from germany and we are talking about a de domain, it is generally safer to just do it.

    I have my data on my website for over 8 years and didn't get a dead bird on my doorstep yet. People ask me all the time about my data although it's on my fucking website. This fucked up german law is the reason why it's so easy for me to just be myself almost everywhere where I am a registered user of. Depending on the game, I even use my real name in multiplayer games. My privacy is already fucked by the fact that I live in germany. There is literally no reason to play ghost.
  • 0
    Well, my privateger.de domain is behind a WHOIS guard. Hmm.
  • 1
    @Alice wow that’s a lot of rules

    @TobyAsE you know if they accept USD?
  • 4
    @A-C-E We are the country with the government that understands the least what the internet even is. What did you expect?
  • 1
    @Alice was not aware of that. Sorry
  • 0
    @A-C-E I don't know, but certainly credit card
  • 1
    @A-C-E No clue, ask their support, they're very helpful!
  • 1
    That impressum shit doesn't depend on the .de domain - it's the same for a .com domain if targeted at Germans. I can't recommend a .de domain due to the legal risk for your relatives. I disadvise even from hosting in Germany.

    The only exception would be if you have a physical business branch in Germany anyway, then it doesn't make things worse than they already are.
  • 0
    @Fast-Nop impressum?
  • 1
    @A-C-E yeah that imprint stuff where you have to disclose your living address and shit because German law in practice means that no private websites exist.

    I am German, would never get a .de domain and host in Iceland which (unlike Germany) isn't an internet shithole country.
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