VeriSign on Thursday relinquished its authority over the .org top-level domain to the Public Interest Registry (PIR), a group set up by the nonprofit Internet Society (ISOC) to administer .org. The .org domain is the Internet's fifth-largest top-level domain, with 2.4 million names registered, and is meant for use by noncommercial organizations.
PIR in Octoberresponsibility for .org, which VeriSign gave up in exchange for the right to maintain the more lucrative .com domain. PIR announced a 25-day "phase-in period" during which VeriSign will still manage the back-end technical duties for .org. Afilias will assume those duties Jan. 25.