New gTLD Community Objection Standing Analysis

By Jacob Malthouse
Jacob Malthouse

The notion of community has been debated since the inception of the ICANN New gTLD Program. However, as far as we know no one has yet taken a holistic approach to analyzing the wealth of information generated by the experts who participated in the ICANN New gTLD community objection process.

As a community applicant for .eco on behalf of the environmental community, Big Room Inc. has a keen interest in understanding how independent experts are interpreting the ICANN notion of community.

The information generated by the community objection process is particularly relevant to the program because the community objection standing criteria and the community-priority evaluation criteria are cut from the same cloth.

Both are based on recommendations and guidelines contained in the Generic Names Supporting Organization (GNSO) Final Report on the Introduction of New Generic Top-Level Domains (published on 8 August 2007).

That report included recommendations and associated guidelines on how ICANN should implement the New gTLD Program. The New gTLD applicant guidebook was developed based on these GNSO recommendations.

Although the guidebook was developed over an extended period including more than six public consultations, ICANN did not substantially diverge from the GNSO recommendations where community evaluations and/or objections were concerned.

To inform the ICANN community as to the perspectives of International Chamber of Commerce's independent evaluators on how best to interpret the applicant guidebook's criteria regarding the verification of the existence of communities, we have released a draft paper that analyzes the standing results of the community objection process. Some of the key findings are:

  1. 65% of community objections in our sample achieved standing.
  2. Objections that were consistently explained usually achieved standing.
  3. Most failures were due to lack of support for the objection.
  4. Except for .insure, no objections that showed substantial support failed to pass the string association (nexus) test.

The community priority evaluation explained in the applicant guidebook is designed to prevent false positives and negatives. On balance, our review suggests that expert interpretations of the standing criteria for objections effectively avoided false determinations.

This was achieved primarily by substantiating the opposition within the context of the explained community. Objections that did not attempt to achieve and/or align these criteria generally had difficulty achieving standing. The draft paper is available for review here.

By Jacob Malthouse, Fmr UNEP Staffer, Ex ICANN VP, Co-founder dot-eco domain registry.. Visit the blog maintained by Jacob Malthouse here.

Related topics: New TLDs


Anyone who was part of the Generic Jean William  –  Jun 09, 2014 4:46 PM PST

Anyone who was part of the Generic Names Supporting Organisation (GNSO) council for five years and was chair for two and a half years, as this coincidentally, covered the time when the new gTLD recommendations were made to ICANN from the GNSO should have a great understanding as to exactly how this should work.

Congratulations Jacob!

Jacob Malthouse - GNSO Source: Jean William  –  Jun 26, 2014 7:05 PM PST
Source Jean William  –  Jun 26, 2014 7:12 PM PST