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IRT Final Report on Trademark Protection in New Top-Level Domains - Part 1: Uniform Rapid Suspension

The ICANN Implementation Recommendation Team (IRT) working group has published its final report, which I decided to analyze a bit further. I already made a few comments last month, both in the At-Large Advisory Council framework and on my own. There are several issues raised by the recommendations of this report. The Uniform Rapid Suspension system (URS) is one. more»

How to Best Enhance Your Brand with New gTLDs

The essay examines the breadth of new generic Top-Level Domain (gTLD) registrations needed for best enhancing a .Brand. And if you don't own .Brand, what should the scope of your new gTLD strategy be? With the introduction of hundreds of new gTLDs, a lot of businesses still don't have reliable information for figuring out which of the newcomers to register under. more»

AFNIC Publishes New Issue Paper on "the Secondary Market in Domain Names"

Loic Damilaville writes to report: Today AFNIC is publishing its new issue paper on the secondary market in domain names. The paper -- written to inform individuals as well as businesses -- gives a detailed account of the concept of "secondary market", the valuation mechanisms used, and the main players involved. The secondary market covers over-the-counter sales of already registered domain names, as well as the market in "second-hand domain names" and the ecosystem made up of the various players involved in these matters. more»

Security Experts Urge Shifting from Defense to Offense in Cybersecurity

A report, released today by McAfee, Inc., titled "Security Takes the Offensive," says that traditionally, security technology companies and computer users have taken a defensive posture, putting the cyber equivalent of body armor on computers, networks and in the cloud. The report's authors say it is now time to avoid enemy strikes altogether by taking a more aggressive stance, aligning forces and involving law enforcement. more»

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." more»

Neustar Analysis Shows ICANN Study Overstates Risk of Harmful Domain-Name Collision

As we blogged about recently, Neustar is committed to ensuring that the domain name system is secure and stable and has been operating top-level domains (TLDs) for over a decade. Tuesday, Neustar submitted comments to the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) in response to ICANN's proposal to delay the launch of hundreds of new generic top-level domains (gTLDs). ICANN's decision to delay the launch is based on a study it commissioned that measured the potential frequency of domain-name collision. more»

Decision Day for ICANN: The End of the Beginning, or the Beginning of the End?

I've just arrived in Singapore, where ICANN's board will almost surely vote to launch an unprecedented expansion plan for generic top-level domains (gTLDs). As the new gTLDs start lighting-up over the next two years, we'll look back on this week as the "end of the beginning" since it ended several years of planning for the actual expansion. After the vote the real work begins: evaluating applications, implementing new mechanisms, and contract compliance on a scale far greater than ICANN has ever seen. more»

How Many TLD Applications Will ICANN Receive?

This post could be subtitled: "The Wisdom of Elites." I polled some people I know in the domain field (plus Andrew Goodman, who wondered what the hell I was going on about). I asked them a simple question: "For the record, how many new TLD applications do you think there'll be?" Most of these people know the domain name world very well, but from different perspectives. Journalists, registrars, intellectual property attorneys, domainers, registry operators, TLD aspirants, entrepreneurs, domain aftermarket auctioneers, civil society activists... more»

Some Thoughts on the ICANN EWG Recommended Registration Directory Service (RDS)

It has been my distinct pleasure to serve on ICANN's Expert Working Group on gTLD Directory Services (EWG). We put in many long months and what seemed like countless hours of research, discussion, meetings, and deliberations on how to tackle a clean-slate approach to gTLD directory services, popularly known as "WHOIS". In our Final Report, the Expert Working Group (EWG) recommended a Registration Directory Service (RDS) to replace today's WHOIS, providing a next-generation system to better meet the needs of the evolving global Internet with greater accuracy, privacy, and accountability. more»

ICANN Wants to Update Its Domain Name Registrar Accreditation Process

ICANN is seeking public input as it intends to revise its domain name registrar accreditation process. Changes include further protection of domain owner privacy. Dr. Paul Twomey, ICANN’s CEO and President says: "The need for this review is clear. The current RAA [Registrar Accreditation Agreement] is more than six years old. We've seen the number of accredited registrars grow to more than 900. And we've seen the incredible difficulties that can be unleashed with the collapse of a Registrar" -- referring to the RegisterFly debaclemore»

A Modest Proposal for ICANN

When it comes to accountability, ICANN would rather be compared to other U.S. nonprofit companies than to the regulatory bodies it more closely resembles. If they truly wish to be treated like a nonprofit, rather than a regulator, there is a very simple solution: make all contributions strictly voluntary. more»

ICANN Documentary Information Disclosure Policy Request

Listed below is correspondence that I have submitted to ICANN's general counsel in connection with the organization's stated documentary information disclosure policy. more»

Big Brands Shooting Themselves In The Foot?

One of the topics that keeps coming up in ICANN policy discussions and as part of the new TLD application process is "transparency". ICANN, and the internet community in general, has had plenty of issues in the past with "bad actors" who have caused a lot of issues for everyone (think of many of the registrars who have lost accreditation in the last couple of years for example). On more than one conference call or policy discussion the issue of a company or a person's track record has come up. more»

Afnic Reporting About Impact of New TLDs on Traditional TLDs

The October 2014 edition of the Afnic Industry Report on Domain Names is out with focus on the impact of the hundreds of new TLDs on "traditional" players. The October 2014 issue shows that gTLDs (.com, .biz., etc.) are impacted by the massive influx of new TLDs on the market whereas ccTLDs (.fr, .re, ...) are better resisting the newcomers. more»

Who is Wagging Who? Same Dog, New Tale.

Today, my company AusRegistry International signed an open letter to the United States House Subcommittee on Intellectual Property, Competition, and the Internet as a show of support for ICANN and its new Top-Level Domain program. I'm disappointed by the nature of the oversight hearing the Subcommittee has called and I believe it will only be a distraction. Let's not kid ourselves; the reason for this hearing is to beat up ICANN over the new TLD program. I think this is unfair and unjustified... more»