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The ICANN Quilombo

Argentines use the word "quilombo" to describe "a real mess", which is what I feared was awaiting us at the outset of ICANN's meeting in Buenos Aires this week. Since then, ICANN President Fadi Chehade has done a good job cleaning-up the internal process quilombo he and the board created. But ICANN's leadership has left the ICANN community struggling to answer deep and ongoing questions about the future of the Internet and the multistakeholder model. more»

It's Time for the New gTLD Delays to End

The next few short weeks in the run-up to ICANN's Cartagena meeting could prove the most important time yet for the organization to show that it is a credible and capable overseer of the domain name system. After over two years of delays, tens of thousands of email exchanges, weeks of heated face-to-face discussions, and many millions of accumulated frequent flier miles, the time has arrived for ICANN to finally draw a line under the new top-level domain policy-development process and name the date for the opening of the first-round application window. 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»

Last Minute Surge of Opposition to VeriSign .NET Auto Renewal

The current .NET Registry Agreement between ICANN and VeriSign is due to expire on 30 June 2011. On April 11 2011 ICANN posted a proposed draft renewal agreement for public comment. Under the terms of the existing agreement, which contracted a 6 year term starting July 1 2005, renewal is automatic unless VeriSign commits some egregious breach of terms. more»

.vla TLD: Not So Fast, Says Flemish Government

As reported last July, there is a proposal from some Flemish politicians to create a .vla top level domain under the new gTLD process launched by ICANN. The proposal further elaborated that the Flemish government would have to cover the costs. Not so fast, says the Flemish government... more»

Fixing WHOIS (and Some Other Stuff Too)

ICANN is the only institution with responsibility for the functioning of DNS. And so it is natural that when there is a DNS problem for people to expect ICANN to come up with the solution. But having the responsibility to act is not the same as having the ability. Like the IETF, ICANN appears to have been designed with the objective of achieving institutional paralysis. And this is not surprising since the first law of the Internet is 'You are so not in charge (for all values of you). more»

Intellectual Property Interests Line Up to Crucify ICANN in Congress

On Wednesday, May 4, the U.S. House Judiciary Committee will hold a hearing called ICANN Generic Top-Level Domains (gTLD) Oversight Hearing. Kurt Pritz from ICANN has been invited to testify. Arrayed against him are a parade of intellectual property interests, some reasonable, some pur et dur lobbyists for complete corporate hegemony over all aspects of the Internet. more»

Antony Van Couvering Interviews Alexa Raad, CEO of Architelos (Video)

Antony Van Couvering, CEO of Minds + Machines, continues his series of in-depth talks with leading figures from the domain name industry with this video interview of Alexa Raad, CEO of Architelos, filmed recently at ICANN 49 in Singapore. Alexa and Antony discuss how brands are dealing with new gTLD, registry strategies for success and how to market a new gTLD. more»

18 TLD Applications Withdrawn to Date

A total of eighteen applications for new Top Level Domains (TLDs) have been withdrawn by the applicants. Of the 18 applications that have been withdrawn so far, just five were applications for generic terms, and the remaining thirteen withdrawn applications were for branded Top Level Domains. In the case of the branded TLDs, it may be that the applicant originally only filed what has been called a "defensive application", meaning that the company applied for the Top Level Domain to prevent its falling in the hands of a competitor. more»

Al Gore Backs Creation of New .eco Domain Name, Calls It Truly Exciting Opportunity

The former US vice president, Al Gore, is backing the creation of a new green .eco domain name. Dot Eco LLC, the applicant for the new .eco Top-Level Domain (TLD), announced during the ICANN meetings in Mexico City that it has entered into an integrated partnership with former Vice President Al Gore and his philanthropy, the Alliance for Climate Protection, to secure and promote the .eco TLD. "We fully support Dot Eco LLC in its efforts to secure the .eco top level domain through the ICANN application process and look forward to working with Dot Eco LLC to promote .eco. This is a truly exciting opportunity for the environmental movement and for the internet as a whole," said Al Gore. more»

Presenting a Way Forward: Step-by-Step and ICANN's New gTLD Process

I read this to the ICANN Board Thursday morning, in Sydney, after more prep work than I care to recall. If you don't know that the DAGv3 is delayed, or what the IRT is, this is a good time to bush up on current ICANN state. "Good morning. My name is Eric Brunner-Williams, and I am speaking to you on behalf of the initial signatories of the Step-by-Step proposal. I represent one of the signatories as the principal of the native, aboriginal, and indigenous cultural and linguistic Top-Level Domain (TLD) project, one of many similar efforts to preserve living languages and cultures..." more»

Registrar Stakeholder Group in GNSO Works Against the ICANN Multistakeholder Social Compact

One of the essential features of the social compact that makes ICANN viable in its stewardship of the Domain Name system is that the operations of the Contracted Parties, i.e. Registrars and Registries, are governed by the cooperation of the contracted parties and the non-contracted parties, i.e. the stakeholders, in the creation of policy. In ICANN, contracts and other agreements are the method by which this policy is instantiated. more»

Afilias' Cynical Attempt to Secure a Windfall at Community Expense

On Friday, October 28, Afilias issued a public statement urging the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) to nullify the results of its July 27, 2016 public auction for the .web new generic top level domain (gTLD) -- in which Nu Dotco, LLC (NDC) submitted the highest bid for .web -- and disqualify NDC from participation in the .web contention. The real issue here is whether ICANN should enforce the results of a fair and competitive public auction... more»

ICANN's Trademark Clearinghouse to Provide Unprecedented Protections in the Domain Name Space - HUH?

Really ICANN? The Trademark Clearinghouse provides unprecedented protection. According to your recent announcement it does. Do tell, ICANN -- in what way does the Trademark Clearinghouse protect anything? more»

Modest Proposals for gTLD Profits

When does a non-profit organization become a profit-making one? This and similarly fundamental questions about ICANN's institutional character are raised by the high probability that the gTLD project will produce profits for ICANN. How much money those profits will amount to remains in question, but it is increasingly difficult for ICANN to say that there will be no profit at all. more»