Historically, ccTLD management has often been handled by local Internet companies, large ISPs… or even outsourced to foreign entities which had either the technical or commercial resources to get the ccTLD off the ground.
As the Internet has grown into a major resource for both the private sector and countries worldwide, governments have moved to put their ccTLDs under direct control.
Internet regulator ICANN has therefore dealt with several requests to "redelegate", i.e. change the managing entity of, a ccTLD.
At its latest meeting, held via teleconference on November 20th, ICANN's board voted unanimously to accept the request received Barbados' Ministry of Economic Affairs and Development’s Telecommunications Unit to have .BB redelegated to it.
ICANN staff evaluate each redelegation request on several criteria, including whether the current operator supports the request, whether the local government supports it and also whether the local community does as well.
In this case, staff reported to the board that there was limited support from the local community, but that the current operator did support the request. It was also noted that the current .BB nameservers were not sufficiently robust, and that these would be improved by the new operator.
.BB is currently open to local residents and companies only. Several sub-domains are also available such as .COM.BB or .NET.BB. It is not yet known whether .BB's eligibility criteria will change with the new operator.