Aftonbladet compromises on .SE name

Newspaper giant Aftonbladet had planned to launch its new free newspaper, .SE, in Stockholm, Gothenburg and Malmö on Monday, but The Local has learned that a last minute name change is likely.

Aftonbladet, which is owned by the media conglomerate Schibsted ASA, had planned to launch its new venture under the name .SE.

But this choice of name met with severe criticism from the Swedish Internet Infrastructure Foundation, the organisation in charge of administering the Swedish top level domain .se.

On Tuesday the daily newspaper Svenska Dagbladet published an opinion piece signed by the chairman of the Internet Infrastructure Foundation, slamming Aftonbladet for choosing a name that has such a ” close association with Swedish national identity on the Internet”.

The article was also signed by a number of representatives from the upper echelons of Swedish trade and industry.

After the publication of the article Aftonbladet and the II Foundation engaged in talks to discuss the problem.

The II Foundation’s CEO Danny Aert considers the outcome of the talks to have been “pretty good”. According to Aerts, the opinion piece had the desired effect.

“I think they seem to have realised that you can’t just take a registered country identity and use it to sell something, diapers or whatever.” He is reluctant to divulge any details but says that he is “an optimist” and “we’ll see on Monday”.

The new newspaper’s managing editor, Niclas Silow, was more forthcoming with details.

“We have made an agreement. There is no conflict. We have made a small change to the logo. The dot has been removed. Now it is written with the word punkt (dot) set vertically before the letters SE.”