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ICANN to IP Experts: Come Back With a Solution for Internet Trademark Protection

Trademark issues are emerging with the upcoming introduction of new generic top-level domains on the internet, and the board members of the body introducing the names has passed the ball back to intellectual property experts to find answers. The Intellectual Property Constituency of the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) has been asked to work out a viable solution "no later than 24 May 2009." Trademark issues have been defined as one of four overarching issues still to be solved before ICANN can finalise the application procedure for the next hundreds or thousands of top-level domains from .eco to .music. more»

ICANN CEO Urges African Telcos to Shatter Monopolies

ICANN CEO, Rod Beckstrom, urges African leaders to "shatter" telecommunications monopolies in their nations in order to help lower the price of Internet access to their citizens during his opening remarks at the start of the 37th ICANN meeting in Nairobi, Kenya. Beckstrom noted that while 15 percent of the world's population lives in Africa, Africans make up less than 7 percent of all Internet users. more»

Microsoft Becomes an ICANN Accredited Registrar

Microsoft has become an ICANN-accredited domain registrar, giving it the ability to sell domains directly to its customers. Microsoft has been reselling domain names from Melbourne IT, a registrar based in Australia that also provides wholesale domains to Yahoo and other hosting providers. more»

eTLDs? ICANN to Take Bids for Common Extensions as TLDs

Internet addresses ending in popular extensions such as ".pdf", ".doc", or ".mp3" could appear under a new proposal by ICANN. However, ICANN said it would likely bar all-numeric suffixes, such as ".123". Once ICANN finishes crafting its criteria, it will start taking bids from outside companies and groups for new domain names, so a ".pdf" domain would appear only if an applicant comes forward and wins approval. The organization is looking for feedback on security and operational issues that may arise from the introduction of new domain names as early as this year. 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»

Linking Internet Companies Caught Supporting Criminal Activities

Main Internet data carriers have stopped providing connectivity to Atrivo, an ISP notorious for serving a large number of scammers and spammers. Reporting on Washington Post's Security Fix, Brian Krebs uncovers thousands of domain names linked to spam and illegal activities that are registered through EstDomains, Atrivo's "most important customer". EstDomains is a reseller of Directi's registration services -- the ICANN accredited domain registration company which has also been under scrutiny as a result. more»

Scrutinize ICANN's Thousand New-TLDs Limit

I am skeptical about how ICANN has arrived at a technical limit of a thousand new TLDs per year. The ICANN study driving this number must be made public so that our industry's risk management experts can size up the finding. Why am I skeptical? more»

ICANN President, CEO to Step Down July 2012

Rod Beckstrom announced today that he will be ending his work at the the Internet Corporation of Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) by July of next year. Beckstrom, a former U.S. cybersecurity chief, was elected as the President and CEO of ICANN in Jun of 2009 following Paul Twomey who had been serving the position since March 2003. more»

Booksellers Weigh In On Amazon's New TLDs

Some pretty big companies are beginning to show an active interest in ICANN's new TLD project. The most recent of them is bookseller Barnes & Noble. The letter, which is available both on the ICANN website, is quite narrow and pointed in its scope and focusses on the perceived competition issues with Amazon's bids for several "closed generics". more»

ICANN and GAC: A New Role Needed?

Syracuse University professor Milton Mueller published a blog under the title "Will the GAC go away if the Board doesn't follow its advice?". Having been to a number of (very limited) ICANN meetings on behalf of law enforcement cooperation, I would like to share a few - probably thought provoking - observations. The GAC should not leave ICANN but it may be more efficient if its role changed and its efforts were aimed at a different form of output. more»

ICANN Appoints IID's Rod Rasmussen to Its Security and Stability Advisory Committee

ICANN has appointed IID President and CTO Rod Rasmussen to its Security and Stability Advisory Committee (SSAC). An area that Rasmussen's work and recent SSAC reports have both covered in-depth is domain name hijacking. Recent hijackings against UFC.com and Coach.com, and similar past attacks against CheckFree, Comcast and Twitter have heightened awareness about the security dangers with the Internet's infrastructure. more»

ICANN Sued by Original .web Applicant

Kevin Murphy reporting on DomainIncite: "Image Online Design, which unsuccessfully applied for the .web gTLD all the way back in 2000, has sued ICANN, alleging trademark infringement and breach of contract. IOD, which says it has over 20,000 .web domains under management in an alternate root, says ICANN never officially rejected its .web bid, and that it should not have allowed other companies to apply for it." more»

Internet Infrastructure: Stability at the Core, Innovation at the Edge (Part 2 of 5)

For nearly all communications on today's Internet, domain names play a crucial role in providing stable navigation anchors for accessing information in a predictable and safe manner, irrespective of where you're located or the type of device or network connection you're using. Over the past 15 years hundreds of millions of domain names have been added to the Internet's Domain Name System (DNS), and well over two billion (that's Billion!) new users, some ~34 percent of the global population, have become connected. more»

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»

ICANN Mission Creep is Becoming Mission Leap

Under the leadership of Fadi Chehade and Steve Crocker, ICANN finally runs like an organization that has grown up. When it comes to process, accountability, and transparency, this is excellent news for the Internet. But it also raises a new question: how far will we let ICANN grow "out" of the limited technical mission for which it was created? In his opening remarks here in Durban, Chehade announced the expansion of local engagement centers and significant expansion of ICANN staff - for the second straight year. more»