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Prepare for the Worst, But Hope for the Best

Byron Holland A couple of weeks ago, I blogged about the importance of the timeline leading up to the September 2015 deadline for the IANA oversight transition proposal. In that post, I explored the nature of U.S. politics and how it can affect the transition if we, as a community, are not diligent in our efforts to meet that deadline. Since then, the IANA Stewardship Transition Coordination Group (ICG) has held its first meeting and a conference call, resulting in some new information that necessitates an update to that post. more»

Quelle Suprise! ICANN's Accountability Plan Gives ICANN Board Total Control

Robin Gross After a long await, ICANN's senior management finally released its plan for "Enhancing Accountability" at the private California corporation that makes global Internet domain name policy. Unfortunately, the accountability deficit crisis created by ICANN's longstanding policy of purely "self-policing" with no meaningful external accountability mechanisms will not be solved by this weak plan for more self-policing. more»

How to Translate a Gov't IPv6 Mandate Into an Action Plan: Guidance for National IPv6 Task Forces

Mukom Akong Tamon Last year, I gave a short talk at the Commonwealth Telecommunications Organisation (CTO) Forum in (Abuja, Nigeria) on this topic and I thought I'd offer more details here. Let's say an African government has realised that IPv4 address exhaustion imposes limits its country's ICT development. Initial investigations indicate that deploying IPv6 is the only sustainable solution. Governments are however not very skilled in the bottom-up approach that is popular in the Internet world. more»

Is racing.com a Half-Million Dollar Mistake for Racing Victoria?

Adrian Kinderis What's a domain name? What business function do they serve? Can a domain name generate ROI? I imagine these were the questions the Board of Racing Victoria asked before signing off on the purchase of racing.com to support a Victorian racing industry joint initiative to establish a digital media and content platform similar to that of the AFL. more»

Net Neutrality Undermining Spreads to Developing Countries

Paul Budde After the USA set the bad example of allowing telcos to start charging different rates for content delivery services, other incumbent telcos elsewhere are only too happy to jump on the bandwagon and use the American example as a reason and an excuse to end net neutrality (NN) in their countries also. As did their American counterparts they too see this as another way to grab some extra monopolistic income. more»

Sailing Backwards: WSIS 10+ Avoids Entering Uncharted Territory

Wolfgang Kleinwächter Early August 2014 the UN General Assembly agreed on the procedures how to review the results of the UN World Summit on the Information Society (WSIS) from 2005. According to the draft resolution, the WSIS 10+ event will be a high level intergovernmental meeting in New York in December 2015. This meeting will adopt an "intergovernmental agreed outcome document"... The outcome document will be negotiated by governments in an "intergovernmental negotiation process". Non-governmental stakeholders from the private sector, civil society and technical community will be invited for "informal interactive consultation" in a parallel process. Wait a minute? What are "informal interactive consultations" in a parallel process? more»

Where is Metadata Anyway?

Geoff Huston I can't help but think that the situation in this rather old joke applies very precisely to the current Australian efforts to compel network operators, through some contemplated regulatory instrument, to record and retain network-collected data about their customers' online activities. What I'd like to examine here the emerging picture that while networks, and network operators, make convenient targets for such surveillance efforts, the reality of today's IP network's are far more complex, and Internet networks are increasingly ignorant about what their customers do. more»

Return of the WCIT

Anthony Rutkowski The title looks like a horror show advertisement; or, maybe a recurrent plague. It is actually a combination of both, and last inflicted itself on the world two years ago in Dubai. It could be visiting us again in the years to come... The World Conference on International Telecommunications (WCIT) and formerly known as Administrative Conferences have been around for the past 150 years. There have been 31 of them held under the aegis of a U.N. agency known as the International Telecommunication Union (ITU) and its precursors. more»

Call for ICANN to Educate and Not Mislead GAC

Sophia Bekele I read with interest the recent blog written by Theresa Swinehart a Sr. Advisor to the President on Strategy. She wrote: "The most critical element of this [ICANN Transition] process is trust and alignment. To ensure success on this accountability track, we must as a community work closely together to make sure that the final process is meaningful. There is plenty of work to be done in an ambitious period of time." more»

The .nyc Landrush Auctions: Adding Injury To Insult

Tom Lowenhaupt New York City is in the midst of a two part Landrush for its .nyc domain names. First is a 60 day application period (August 4 – October 3) during which anyone with nexus -- basically city residents -- can purchase an available .nyc domain name... It doesn't even matter if a name has a NYS Trademark or d/b/a registration, those names too are fair game... There are significant problems with this process. more»

Website Usage Analysis in the New gTLDs

Andy Simpson A recent study, by EURid and the Leuven Statistics Research Centre, set out to better understand the most common usage of websites that are linked to domains, and we thought it would be an interesting exercise to extend similar analysis to the new gTLD market. So, we analyzed all second-level domains registered in new gTLDs according to published zone files on June 29, 2014.  more»

The Next New Media: Typewriters and Handwritten Letters

Paul Budde Who would have thought that typewriters and handwritten letters would ever be back in fashion? But back in 2013 it was reported that Russia was buying large quantities of typewriters. When this was further investigated the country denied that this was for security reasons. Since the Snowden revelations there has been a further rush on typewriters, both by government officials and by a range of, mainly corporate, businesses. more»

Google Domains: Give Me More

Jean Guillon The Buzz seems to be about Google Domains at the moment: Google is launching as a Registrar and will soon offer plenty of fantastic things to do with domain names. But... is there anything new with Google Domains? I checked the features but... I found nothing that other Registrars do not already offer and I admit I expected to be a little more impressed. more»

Verisign Mitigates 300 Gbps DDoS Attack and Other Q2 2014 DDoS Trends

Danny McPherson It has been another busy quarter for the team that works on our DDoS Protection Services here at Verisign. As detailed in the recent release of our Q2 2014 DDoS Trends Report, from April to June of this year, we not only saw a jump in frequency and size of attacks against our customers, we witnessed the largest DDoS attack we've ever observed and mitigated -- an attack over 300 Gbps against one of our Media and Entertainment customers. more»

What is Metadata, and Why Should I Care?

Geoff Huston August 2014 is proving yet again to be an amusing month in the Australian political scene, and in this case the source of the amusement was watching a number of Australian politicians fumble around the topic of digital surveillance and proposed legislation relating to data retention measures. The politicians assured us that the proposed data retention measures were nothing untoward, and all that was being called for was the retention of "metadata" by Australian ISPs for a period of two years. more»

News Briefs

WIPO Taking Screenshots of Filed UDRPs

Michael Berkens reporting in TheDomains.com: "WIPO has been taking Screenshots of whatever is on a domain name as soon as a UDRP Is filed and they have been furnishing the screenshot to the UDRP panel who has been taking the screenshot into account as evidence in making their determination... Mr. Berryhill has been working behind the scenes to confirm that WIPO has in fact has been taking a screenshot of the domain name upon receipt of a UDRP complaint and furnishing it to the panel without the knowledge of the domain holder and of course has been telling WIPO why its just plain wrong." ›››

TCP Stealth Aims to Keep Servers Safe from Mass Port-Scanning Tools

Heise Online – TCP Stealth, an IETF draft authored by Julian Kirsch, Christian Grothoff, Jacob Appelbaum, and Holger Kenn, describes an easily-deployed and stealthy port knocking variant. "TCP Stealth embeds the authorization token in the TCP ISN, and enables applications to add payload protections. As a result, TCP Stealth is hard to detect on the network as the traffic is indistinguishable from an ordinary 3-way TCP handshake, and man-in-the-middle attacks as well as replay attacks are mitigated by the payload protections. TCP Stealth works with IPv4 and IPv6."
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Non-Commercial Stakeholder Group Releases Statement on ICANN Staff's Accountability Plan

Non-Commercial Stakeholder Group (NCSG) today released the following statement on ICANN staff's accountability plan... "A number of public comments and discussions in London focused on the inherent conflict of interest behind staff developing its own accountability and transparency mechanisms, so it was surprising to see that input had not been taken into account in the development of this proposal..." ›››

Global Domain Name Registrations Reach 276 Million, Increase of Over 19M From Last Year

Five million domain names were added to the Internet in the first quarter of 2014, bringing the total number of registered domain names to 276 million worldwide across all top-level domains (TLDs) as of March 31, 2014, according to the latest Domain Name Industry Brief from Verisign. ›››

Researcher Propose Faster, Safer Internet by Abandoning TCP/IP Protocol

Network World – Researchers at Aalborg University in Denmark, in association with MIT and Caltech, reckon that the Internet can be made faster, and more secure, by abandoning the whole concept of packets and error correction. Error correction slows down traffic because the chunks of data, in many cases, have to be sent more than once. ›››

ICANN Extends Chehadé's Contract by Two More Years

ICANN today announced that its Board has extended the contract of Fadi Chehadé, President and Chief Executive Officer, by two more years. "I'm glad to be able to expend my energy and passion towards ICANN's noble mission and great public responsibility," said Chehadé. ›››

Worldwide Smartphone Shipments Grow 23.1% Year over Year in 2nd Quarter of 2014

The worldwide smartphone market grew 23.1% year over year in the second quarter of 2014 (2Q14), establishing a new single quarter record of 295.3 million shipments, according to preliminary data from the International Data Corporation (IDC) Worldwide Quarterly Mobile Phone Tracker. ›››

EURid Compensates Carbon Emissions With Wind Turbines

European TLD registry, EURid has announced that it is the first TLD Registry in Europe to be registered by the EU Eco-Management and Audit Scheme (EMAS). "EURid has taken an environmentally responsible approach to operating .eu for many years. Our environmental policy is based on the principle of 'reduce, reuse and recycle' and provides a framework for making sustainable choices." ›››

Simple Overview of ICANN and the IANA Transition by Vint Cerf

Google has released a Doodle Video Animation of its VP and Chief Internet Evangelist, Vint Cerf, explaining inner workings of the Internet, formation of ICANN and the IANA transition. ›››

Video Interviews Highlighting ICANN 50 in London

ICANN 50 in London wrapped up in late June and proved to be an exciting and eventful conference. Discussion in London included hot topics such as Internet Governance and the IANA Functions Transition, as well as ongoing discussions regarding New gTLDs, ICANN Accountability, and policy development. ›››

Netflix Passes 50M Subscribers Worldwide

The gains announced Monday include an additional 570,000 U.S. subscribers, slightly more than Netflix's management predicted. The quarter is typically the company's slowest of the year, as people spend more time outdoors instead of watching video. Netflix ended June with 36.2 million subscribers in the U.S. and another 13.8 million customers in roughly 40 other countries. The Los Gatos, California, company picked up 1.1 million subscribers outside the U.S. in the second quarter, a figure that also topped management's projections. ›››

China's Internet Users Pass 632 Million, 83 Percent Online Via Mobile

Reuters – The number of China's internet users going online with a mobile device -- such as a smartphone or tablet -- has overtaken those doing so with a personal computer (PC) for the first time, said the official China Internet Network Information Center (CNNIC) on Monday. China's total number of internet users crept up 2.3 percent to 632 million by the end of June, from 618 million at the end of 2013, said CNNIC's internet development statistics report. Of those, 527 million -- or 83 percent -- went online via mobile. Those doing so with a PC made up 81 percent the total. ›››

Impartiality of Dot Pharmacy TLD Questioned

Catherine Saez and William New reporting in Intellectual Property Watch: "New generic top-level domain names seem set to be a constant source of discussions and dissension. The domain '.pharmacy' has been awarded to a United States pharmacy association with industry backing, stirring concerns among civil society and others. But the association insists it will work in an impartial manner to ensure safety of online pharmaceutical sales..." ›››

Google Announces Project Zero to Secure the Internet

Google today revealed a new initiative, named Project Zero, with the objective to "significantly reduce the number of people harmed by targeted attacks." To carry out the project, Google is recruiting a team of experienced hackers - "practically-minded security researchers" - to contribute 100% of their time toward improving security across the Internet. ›››

Major Web Companies Reiterate Opposition to Paying ISPs for Fast Lane Access

The Internet Association -- a trade group that represents 36 companies including Google, Netflix, Amazon, Facebook, Twitter, eBay, Yahoo, and PayPal -- submitted comments (PDF) to the Federal Communications Commission on Monday to formally oppose a proposal to let Internet service providers charge content providers for priority access in their networks. The FCC is currently weighing a proposal to establish guidelines to protect the open Internet. ›››

Scotland's New TLD .scot Goes Live

The new TLD for Scotland, .scot, has been launched. About 50 sites run by "launch pioneers" are expected to go live on Tuesday. Among those who have signed up for a new domain are the Scottish government, referendum campaigners Yes Scotland and Better Together, WWF Scotland, NHS Scotland and Scouts Scotland. The .scot domain is one of a number of new top-level domains going live this year including .wales, .london, .berlin and .NYC. ›››

Registration Open for Upcoming IGF-USA 2014

The IGF-USA 2014 will take place on July 16th, 2014 at George Washington University in Washington, DC. The complete agenda has now been published and registration is open. ›››

Website Usage Trends Among Top-Level Domains

EURid and Leuven Statistics Research Centre have released the results of a study investigating websites under most popular top-level domains. ›››

The Digital Strategy and DotOps Congress (Amsterdam, September 2014)

Momentum has announced that the upcoming Digital Strategy & DotOps Congress will be held in Amsterdam, September 18-19, 2014. The group says that it has completely updated the program agenda for this 5th installment in Momentum's Digital Strategy and gTLD Congress series. ›››

Australians Prefer .au Domain Names, Usage on the Rise

AusRegistry today released survey results of more than 3,000 Australians confirming that .au domain name registrations are on the rise, with 76% of all domain name holders choosing .au, an increase of 2% from last year. The survey also found .au remains Australia's home on the Internet with more than double the level of trust over any other namespace. ›››

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Nominum Announces Future Ready DNS

Nominum Nominum today announces Vantio CacheServe 7, a new software architecture coupled with time-proven Vantio technology maximizing the power of server hardware; letting providers think about DNS in new ways. more»

Last Lap of .WEBSITE, .PRESS and .HOST Sunrise

Radix Only 10 days are left before Radix's first three TLDs, .website, .host and .press exit Sunrise on 22nd August '14. Brands registered with the TMCH have the last 10 days left to take advantage of this Sunrise opportunity. more»

DotConnectAfrica Trust Responds to ICANN 50 GAC Advice, Updates on .Africa Application IRP Status

DotConnectAfrica This is the second GAC Advice and a third response by DCA to a GAC Advice that initially was issued during the ICANN GAC Meeting in Beijing China, and prior to that, as a GAC Early Warning. more»

New .ORGANIC Domain Sunrise Begins, Creating Verified Space 
for Organic Products and Services

Afilias The sunrise period allows qualified trademark holders to register names immediately; other members of the organic community can register names beginning September 15. more»

Non-English "IDN Email" Addresses Are Finally Working!

Dot Chinese Online & Dot Chinese Website Late this afternoon (Tuesday, August 5th, 2014), Google announced a long-awaited and highly anticipated change that took place today with Gmail, which will surely be remembered as one of the most important milestones in the history of internet email: The "client-side" implementation of non-Latin, character-based Internationalized Domain Name (IDN) email. more»

TLD Registry to Speak at Inaugural World Domain Day India

Dot Chinese Online & Dot Chinese Website We are excited to announce that TLD Registry's CEO Arto Isokoski and CMO Simon Cousins will be highlighted guest speakers at India's inaugural World Domain Day.  more»

New from Verisign Labs - Measuring Privacy Disclosures in URL Query Strings

Verisign Andrew G. West, a Research Scientist in Verisign Labs, along with collaborator and U.S. Naval Academy professor Adam J. Aviv examined nearly 900 million user-submitted URLs to gauge the prevalence and severity of privacy leaks. more»

Independent Endorsement of Dot Chinese Online & Dot Chinese Website

Dot Chinese Online & Dot Chinese Website FairWinds' Founding Partner, Phil Lodico, mentions several business, social and cultural benefits that registrants enjoy with fully-Chinese domain names. more»

ICANN London Recap Webinar

MarkMonitor Please join ICANN and gTLD experts, Elisa Cooper of MarkMonitor® and Brian J. Winterfeldt of Katten Muchin Rosenman LLP, for guidance on navigating this complex environment.
 more»

Four Reasons to Move from .COM to Your .BRAND Domain

Neustar Ask Google, Amazon, AXA and hundreds of other brands: branded top-level domains are the future of the web. Since 2012, when the ICANN opened up applications for new TLDs, more than 600 businesses have submitted applications for branded TLDs. more»

DotConnectAfrica Delegates Attend the Kenya Internet Governance Forum

DotConnectAfrica The annual forum focused on ICT Synergy and sessions discussing policies enabling access such as improving cost and quality of internet services, Net Neutrality, Cyber security, DNSSEC which has become a major factor in utilizing ICT services. more»

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