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NTAG Chair Blog: A Better Auction Framework

New gTLD Applicants now have a more fair and reasonable ICANN auction framework. A collaborative negotiation between the New TLD Applicant Group (NTAG) Auctions Working Group and ICANN Staff resulted in changes that improve the auction rules and bidder agreement. The indemnification and waivers in the agreement are now aligned with breaches that applicants can control. Applicants also now have an indemnification from Power Auction for third party claims related to IP infringement. more»

Black Helicopters for the DNS: What Happens In 2025?

When Steve delBianco from NetChoice testified (April 2, 2014) in the Subcommittee on Communications and Technology of the US House of Representatives on "Ensuring the Security, Stability, Resilience, and Freedom of the Global Internet", he proposed a stresstest for new mechanisms which could substitute the role of the NTIA in overseeing the IANA contract with ICANN. Stresstests are good. It is good for cars, it is good for banks and it is good for new mechanisms... more»

A Programmer's Perspective on the IANA Transition

Earlier this week, I posted from Singapore on the challenges we face in designing the transition of IANA functions from the US government to the global multistakeholder community. Now, let's consider how a programmer would design new mechanisms to accomplish this transition. For starters, a programmer would need something more than high-level principles. Coding requires use cases for routine interaction and especially for cases where users don't follow the expected routine and where the real world intervenes with inconvenient problems. more»

What the US Government Said About IANA in Singapore

Two weeks ago, the US government announced it would transition its role in the IANA functions to the global Internet community. It tasked ICANN with the job of arriving at a transition plan and noted that the current contract runs out in 18 months' time, 30 September 2015. This week, ICANN started that process at its meeting in Singapore. And on the ground were the two key US government officials behind the decision. more»

Finishing What We Started: A Level Playing Field for New gTLDs

While the Internet governance debate devours headlines, it's almost easy to forget that ICANN is in the midst of the most audacious and important policy process it has ever undertaken. And while many new generic top-level domains are now live, the process of ensuring the best opportunity to fulfill their potential is not yet complete. We recently reached the milestone of 280,000 registrations in the Donuts gTLDs that are currently generally available. more»

If the Stakeholders Already Control the Internet, Why NETmundial and the IANA Transition?

Last weekend C-Span, the public service network that broadcasts proceedings of the U.S. Congress and other U.S. government functions, aired a segment of its series "the Communicators" featuring ICANN CEO Fadi Chehade; C-Span describes the show as "Half-hour conversations with the leaders who shape our digital future". While the interview is actually just 28 minutes long, and appears to have been recorded on January 28th, it contains some surprising statements that raise some intriguing questions. more»

Is NTIA's Transition Decision the Right Dose of Chemotherapy to Repair Trust in Multistakeholderism

Proper, transparent, accountable U.S. NTIA's Transition of its oversight of the Internet to something other than a single country oversight is something I have always believed in and spoke and written about repeatedly for years and is long overdue. But NTIA's March 14th declared intent to transfer "Key" Internet roles is not only very ambiguous but leads to new questions and concerns that must be answered before anything starts taking place. more»

How Are ICANN's New TLDs Doing?

ICANN has now accepted several hundred new top level domains (TLDs) and some of them are now open for general registration. I have sized up for zone file access, so I can download daily snapshots of most of the active zones, and I'm making daily counts of the number of names in each zone. more»

U.S. Government Announces Intent to Transition DNS Functions to Global Community

U.S. Commerce Department's National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) took a historic step today announcing "its intent to transition key Internet domain name functions to the global multistakeholder community." more»

Et Tu, ICANN? ICANN Board's Recent Decision on the .Islam and .Halal TLD Applications Is Wrong

On Feb. 7, 2014 Dr. Stephen Crocker, the Chair of the ICANN Board of Directors, wrote to Asia Green IT System (AGIT), a Turkish company which applied for .Islam and .Halal, conveying ICANN's latest position on these two applications. The letter is deeply flawed, and shows how ICANN's handling of the .Islam and .Halal applications is at once an egregious assault on the new gTLD program rules, and a betrayal of whatever trust Muslims around the world might have had in ICANN. more»

ICANN Board Approves 'Thick' Whois Requirement for .COM and .NET

The ICANN Board has approved the community recommendation that "the provision of Thick Whois services should become a requirement for all gTLD registries, both existing and future." We have long supported the migration from 'thin' to 'thick' Whois, which will improve both quality and ease of access to Whois data, thereby further facilitating intellectual property enforcement online. The ICANN community has debated the merits of migration from 'thin' to 'thick' Whois for years, as part of the larger Whois Review process. more»

ICANN's Uniform Rapid Suspension: The Good, the Bad and the Ugly

With so many new gTLDs moving into their respective general availability periods, and incidents of cybersquatting beginning to appear, many companies are now looking towards the URS (Uniform Rapid Suspension) as a possible solution for quickly remediating abuse. As a reminder, domains that are the subject of a successful URS ruling are suspended for the remainder of the registration term, or can be renewed for an additional year at the current registrar. more»

Touching Enhanced Cooperation

A concrete plinth was lain at the foundation of durable Enhanced Cooperation this week when ISOC unveiled its IXP toolkit and portal. In simple English (which no doubt will be expanded to other languages) the soft launch modestly seeks feedback, corrections, and further input to the already pithy and instructive content. More to the point, this resource responds to one of the principle demands of those who do not recognize themselves in the multistakeholder model: how do we get our own IXP? more»

ICANN's Uncertain State: 2014

In a recent video interview conducted while he attended the World Economic Summit in Davos, Switzerland, ICANN CEO Fadi Chehade stated "legitimacy comes from accountability". That statement is correct. It is also troubling, in that many of ICANN's recent policies and activities raise serious questions regarding whether it is sufficiently accountable and therefore perceived as acting in a legitimate manner - as well as whether it is continuing to faithfully abide by the Affirmation of Commitments (AOC) it entered into when the US government terminated direct oversight of ICANN in 2009. more»

EU to ICANN: Go Back to Drawing Board on Auctions!

The European Commission is not a big fan of the David versus Goliath ICANN new gTLD auction scenario. On December 12 last year, ICANN released a set of revised public auction rules. These auctions are presented as the avenue of last resort for resolving new gTLD contentions. As is ICANN's custom, the rules were put out for public comment. The EU submitted its statement on the very last day of the comment reply period. more»

Industry Updates

Afilias Chairman Appointed to Domain Name Association Board

DotConnectAfrica Statement Regarding NTIA's Intent to Transition Key Internet Domain Name Function

Afilias Joins Internet Technical Leaders in Welcoming IANA Globalization Progress

DotConnectAfrica Trust Takes Its Case With ICANN to Independent Review Process (IRP) Panel

2013: A Year in Review, End of Year Message from DotConnectAfrica

TLDH Announces Sales Channel and gTLD Portfolio Update

Go-Live Schedule for Dot Chinese Online & Dot Chinese Website TLDs Announced

DotConnectAfrica Trust Attends ICANN 48 International Meeting in Buenos Aires, Argentina

TLDH Group Signs 6 New Top-Level Domain Contracts With ICANN

SPECIAL: Updates from the ICANN Meetings in Buenos Aires

Pre-Delegation Testing for Dot Chinese Online (.在线) & Dot Chinese Website (.中文网) Begins

DCA Trust Raises Ethical Questions, Writes to Newly Elected African Union Leaders on .africa Debacle

TLDH to Realise US$4.81 Million in Cash From .website and .lawyer Private Auctions

ARI Registry Services Drives New TLD Applicants to Activate Launch Strategy

NewDomains.org 2013: Why You Should Be There