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Insights from ARI's New TLD Workshop

Never let it be said that group therapy isn't effective. Prior to hosting a new Top-Level Domain (TLD) workshop for a group of Australian applicants last week, the only therapy I would have advised for new TLD applicants was electroshock therapy - given the confidence-sapping delays and the catastrophic impact of constant changes to the program such as Digital Archery, Name Collisions and GAC Advice. more»

Stress Test: Accountability Reconsideration Request Filed with ICANN Board

In a rapid follow-up to the unprecedented joint letter sent on August 26th by all members of the ICANN community questioning the proposed Accountability Process imposed by ICANN staff, three of the groups that signed that letter have now submitted a formal Reconsideration Request (RR) to the ICANN Board. The August 29th RR -- submitted jointly by the Business Constituency, Registry Stakeholders Group, and Non-Commercial Stakeholders group -- requests that ICANN "confer with the community as soon as possible to address these concerns and amend its plan in such a way that the community input is taken into account as the plan goes forward.  more»

Where Should the Telcos Jump Next?

With declining revenues now across all of the major revenue segments -- something in the order of $25 billion worldwide -- it is 2 minutes to 12 and the industry needs to act. Unlike previous situations, this time there is no large money-spinner around the corner for the telcos, such as we saw in previous situations when broadband and mobile came to the rescue. more»

Radical Shift of Power Proposed at ICANN Putting Govts in Primary Decision Making Role

ICANN has proposed a major change to its bylaws that would require the organization to adopt all policy "advice" issued by the Governmental Advisory Committee (GAC) unless 2/3 of ICANN's non-conflicted board members vote to oppose the adoption of that governmental rule. This draconian proposal to change ICANN's bylaws would fundamentally transform ICANN away from being a "bottom-up" and "private-sector-led" organization and into a governmental regulatory agency... more»

Accountability and Redress

In ICANN circles these days, accountability is the buzz word. Nearly everybody is talking about it. Generally everybody is in favor of it, but that's where the agreement ends. This paper urges action by ICANN to provide a means for redress of grievances as an essential element of accountability. I would like to review the ICM case (the delegation of the .xxx domain), and the role of ICANN's Independent Review Panel (the IRP). As you will recall, the ICANN Board had originally awarded .xxx to ICM, but in a subsequent reconsideration had reversed the award. more»

ICANN Community Issues Unprecedented Letter Questioning ICANN's Proposed Accountability Process

In another unpredicted development the entire community of ICANN stakeholders has sent a joint letter to CEO Fadi Chehade and the ICANN Board that strongly questions the "Enhancing ICANN Accountability and Governance - Process and Next Steps" document published by ICANN staff on August 14th over widespread community objections. Signatories to the August 26th letter include the GNSO Council and all of the GNSO's stakeholder groups and constituencies, the Country Code Name Supporting Organization, the At-Large Advisory Committee, the Security and Stability Advisory Committee - and, most surprisingly, the Governmental Advisory Committee. more»

The ANA and Hand-Wringing

The Association of National Advertisers is at it again, this time spelling the death of new gTLDs barely after they emerge from the gate. In 1982, at the dawn of the video age, Motion Picture Association of America President Jack Valenti infamously told Congress, with more than one unfortunate reference to various types of violent crime, that the advent of the VCR would spell immediate and irrevocable doom to the motion picture industry, and that the device should certainly be thrown to the scrap heap even before its arrival. more»

African Peering and Interconnection Forum (AfPIF) Streaming Live This Week From Dakar, Senegal

The 5th African Peering and Interconnection Forum (AfPIF) gets underway today, August 26, 2014, in Dakar, Senegal, with a packed agenda full of sessions focused on the future of peering and interconnection in Africa. There are sessions targeted at Internet Service Providers (ISPs), Internet Exchange Points (IXPs), infrastructure providers, content creators and policy makers and regulators. The event goes through Thursday, August 28, 2014. more»

A New Way to Value Registry Business

There's a new site on the web - nTLDstats.com - that has a ton of valuable information about the new gTLD program. It shows numbers of registrations by registry, registrar, registry service provides - all the "Rs" in the domain name industry. It has quickly become the place where people go to measure how the industry, and the competitors in it, are doing. There's only one problem - not all domain registrations are created equal. more»

Telecoms - Where Will the Money Come From?

With the arrival of mobile saturation stagnation is occurring in telecoms revenue growth in most developed telecoms markets. Voice traffic is increasingly moving onto IP-based systems, which are either free or at very low cost to its users. This is taking place on both the fixed and mobile networks. While in the case of corporate and government organisations nearly all fixed voice traffic has moved to IP-based systems, in the SME and consumer market this has not been the case. more»

IGF Call for Public Comments on the Definition of Multistakeholder Participation Mechanisms

Over the past weeks, communities gathering experts from government, business, Civil Society, and the academic and technical communities, have been working through open mailing lists and online virtual meetings on IGF Best Practices. The discussion was documented by independent experts that will feed into five 90 minute Forums in Istanbul and that will in turn report into a Best Practices Main Session. more»

Do You .RUN?

I am not such a good runner but I have decided to run early in the morning. It is what I just started to do today and to be honest, I hated it. But it does not matter, I will run again tomorrow morning... So what is the market for .RUN? Do runners communicate on Internet? Do they need to communicate because they are runners? Is .RUN for runners only? more»

Wireless Broadband vs Fixed Broadband - The Story Continues

This never-ending story is used by opportunistic telcos and their lobbyists to confuse the issue in order to gain regulatory or political advantage. The debate is now raging again in the USA. In an attempt to talk down their monopolistic position in the market the three telcos - and this time in particular, Comcast - are claiming that real competition does in fact exist in the American broadband market, citing competition from the mobile 4G LTE services as an example. more»

Prepare for the Worst, But Hope for the Best

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

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»

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