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The Favoured New TLD Registrar Payment Model

This week, Thomas Barrett - the President of US based registrar EnCirca - published a timely article about how the registrar cash flow model could collapse with the imminent release of hundreds of new Top-Level Domains (TLD). I would like to thank Thomas for raising this important issue and for encouraging all new TLD applicants to discuss this topic with their back-end registry provider. more»

Suggestions on IDN Variant Management

To some applicants, ICANN's variant management policy in DAG4 has become a big obstacle to the new generic Top-Level Domain (gTLD) application. The policy is to delegate the string while reserving the variants, and these variants will not be delegated until a sound mechanism is developed and the desired variants are evaluated. But for some languages, Chinese for example, the so called string and its variant, namely simplified Chinese and traditional Chinese, are equivalent and must be simultaneously delegated. more»

ICANN Chief Announces Departure Via Twitter

ICANN's CEO and President, Rod Beckstrom, has announced that he will be stepping down in July of next year. The announcement came via Twitter of all places, with a press release, presumably with more details, due sometime soon... With the launch of the new Top-Level Domain (TLD) program scheduled to officially launch early in 2012 maybe Beckstrom feels that his job "is done", or maybe there's another motive behind his departure. more»

New gTLDs and Children

At first blush most are unlikely to see the relationship between new generic Top-Level Domains (gTLDs) and children. However, as a father and someone that has worked with approximately 50% of all new gTLDs approved by ICANN over the last decade, I have a unique perspective that may shed some light on this analogy. Hopefully, as the ICANN community begins to seek closure in connection with the new gTLD implement process, this article may offer one perspective as to what lies ahead. more»

US Department of Commerce Approves VeriSign '.com' Contract

The U.S. Commerce Department on Thursday approved a bid by VeriSign Inc. to run the key directories that keep track of the Internet's ".com" domain names.

The approval was the final clearance needed for VeriSign to extend its hold over the most popular suffix on the Internet. VeriSign reached an agreement earlier with ICANN but Commerce has veto power over ICANN decisions. more»

New ICANN Requirements for New gTLDs Are Irrelevant

ICANN is barking up a number of wrong trees with the latest version of its Evaluation and Questions Criteria for generic top-level domains (gTLDs). The document asks for financial projections, the applicant's goals for its TLD, and the benefits the applicant expects to derive. All that information is meaningless. more»

ICANN Released Its Draft for New Top-Level Domains, 45 Day Comment Period Now Open

In follow up to its earlier announcement this year regarding the relaxation of rules for the introduction of new Top-Level Domains, the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) yesterday released a draft version of the Applicant Guidebook for those interested in applying for a new generic Top-Level Domain (gTLD). Although application comes with a hefty entry fee of close to $200,000, the development of new gTLD introductions will be of particular interest to trademark owners as well as any other company involved with domain names. Among various issues, the guidebook aims at addressing concerns such as who would qualify for '.apple' or '.amazon' gTLDs. more»

Google's .App TLD Application Under Fire

I've written about "closed generic" new TLD applications several times over the last year. I'm opposed to them, as I've said in the past and continue to say today. However I've generally been supportive of "restricted" TLDs. The Association for Competitive Technology (ACT) has serious concerns about Google's application for .app and want ICANN's board of directors to treat as a "closed generic". more»

Twitter and Web Globalization

ICANN recently launched its own Twitter feed. And since ICANN is a global organization, it launched more than one language feed -- one in English and one in Spanish... This is not the most scalable solution. And I'm not trying to pick on Twitter; the issue effects any multinational company or organization. For instance, let's say ICANN launches a Portuguese feed for Brazil. The address would have to read twitter.com/icann_pt_br. Similar challenges arise with French... more»

Playing the Long Game at the Internet Governance Poker Table

Poker players say if you can't spot the fish within your first 15 minutes at the table, you're the fish. With that in mind, I'm tempted to ask ICANN President Fadi Chehade who's the fish in the high-stakes game of global Internet governance we're now playing. In 2013, ICANN dramatically changed its course in the global Internet governance debate. For a decade ICANN largely stayed out of the game, allowing stakeholders to defend the multi-stakeholder model where private sector and civil society are on equal footing with governments. But in 2013 ICANN went on the offensive... more»

Introduction: ICANN's Alternative Path to Delegation (Part 1 of 4)

As widely discussed recently, observed within the ICANN community several years ago, and anticipated in the broader technical community even earlier, the introduction of a new generic top-level domain (gTLD) at the global DNS root could result in name collisions with previously installed systems. Such systems sometimes send queries to the global DNS with domain name suffixes that, under reasonable assumptions at the time the systems were designed, may not have been expected to be delegated as gTLDs. more»

Closed Generics Debate Rages On

The new gTLD program continues to throw up last-minute debates on what is acceptable as a TLDs and what is not. The latest such verbal joust centers around closed generics. These are generic terms being applied for by applicants whom, should they be successful, will not open the TLD up to everyone on an equal access basis. As an example, think .book being run by Amazon and only available to Amazon customers. more»

One Big Cheer for ICANN - But Still a Way's from Our "Gooool"

As we approach the World Cup in South Africa this June it's heartening to see the amount of attention being paid to the continent. As with ICANN's recent Nairobi meeting, the eyes of the world are focusing on Africa in a new way -- as a sophisticated marketplace, and as a destination for investment, technology, and yes, sports... Still, as we prepare for the Cup and as we celebrate ICANN's recent approval of more Internationalized Domain Names (IDNs), our job as an Internet community remains unfinished. Too many scripts and thus too many key voices remain "off the pitch". more»

UDRP Failure Endangers Consumers

Yesterday I participated in a panel at the International Consumer Product Safety Conference sponsored by the International Consumer Product Health and Safety Organization (ICPHSO) held at the European Commission in Brussels Belgium. This conference brings together the global community of product safety engineers, manufacturers, retailers, regulators, inspectors, and counterfeiting investigators. The role of online fraud and illicit product traffic is clearly one of the conference priorities. more»

ICANN CEO: "We Will Not Change our Timeline"

Mary Iqbal writes to report: ICANN CEO Fadi Chehade, in his recent "New gTLD Applicant Webinar" dated February 5, 2013 affirmed his committment to moving forward with the rollout of new Top Level Domains. Chehade stressed that ICANN has a responsibility to move forward with new Top Level Domains for the benefit of internet users as a whole as well as for the benefit of those who have applied to operate new Top Level Domains, but not at the expense of the stability of the DNS, which is the core responsibility of ICANN. more»