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Whois / Featured Blogs

Avoiding an ICANN Monopoly on Policy

With all the focus in the TLD world on the imminent arrival of more than a thousand new TLDs and the still unfinished discussions within ICANN on what policy framework those TLDs will need to follow, it is often forgotten that there are hundreds of other TLD policy frameworks that are mature, stable and well tested. These of course are the ccTLD policy frameworks that have been actively developed over 20 years. more»

Rebooting Whois

As some readers probably know, I spend quite a bit of my time working on Internet policy related matters. Some of it may appear incredibly boring, but it matters. (If you really want me to explain why it matters I'd be happy to do so!) Since earlier this year I've been part of a small team of people drawn from the four corners of the globe and asked to re-examine "whois". more»

What New gTLD Applicants Need Is a Quick, Lightweight Answer to the World's Governments. Here It Is.

It's safe to say that with just a week to go before ICANN intended to sign the first contract for a new gTLD, the last thing anyone wanted was a 12-page document from the world's governments with 16 new "safeguards", six of which it wants to see applied to every new extension. But what the industry shouldn't overlook, especially in the face of the expected critical responses this week and next, is that the Governmental Advisory Committee's (GAC's) formal advice from the ICANN Beijing meeting represents an opportunity for the domain name industry to lock-in self-regulation at a critical point in its evolution. more»

Pandora's Box - New US Cyber Security Bills Create a Worm Hole in the Internet Galaxy

There are two Bills that are floating through the corridors of power on the Hill that could potentially change the course of civil and political rights within the United States and the world. One was introduced through the House of Representatives and the other through the Senate. The two Bills touch on a common thread that are premised on "national security" however there are interesting challenges that will surface should the Bills be passed that affect global public interest that require further examination, introspection and discussion. more»

Follow a Phishing Case in Real Time: postfinances.com / Swiss Post

It is just another phishing case. Why should I care? I happened to receive my own copy of the phishing email message. Most Internet users will just smile bitterly before deleting it. I checked it to see why it had gone through the spam filters. It had no URL in the text but a reply-to address. So it needed a valid domain name, and had one: postfinances.com. PostFinance (without trailing "s") is the payment system of the Swiss Post. It has millions of users. more»

Top 10 Biggest Domain Stories of 2012 and Predictions for 2013

So my prediction from last year that "ICANN will open the new gTLD application period without any glitches" could not have been more wrong. And yes - I actually used the word 'glitches'... Regardless of my crystal-ball gazing skills, it's been another incredibly eventful year, and below are the Top 10 Domain Stories from 2012. more»

NEW CEO, Trademark Clearinghouse, URS and RAA Take Center Stage at ICANN 45 in Toronto

At his first meeting as CEO of ICANN, Fadi Chehade showed up ready to work AND to listen. ICANN's new CEO described his objectives for the organization which included 1) affirmation of purpose, 2) operational excellence, 3) internationalization, and 4) evolution of the multi-stakeholder model on which ICANN is built. He also described significant organizational changes to ICANN leadership and staff... more»

Compliance Overhaul a Start

ICANN is clearly changing with the new CEO making immediate changes to the organizational structure and Compliance announcing a number more effective tools and procedures at Sunday's At-Large Advisory Committee (ALAC) and Regional Leadership Meetings. It seems very ambitious and they will need to be because our year-long research, publicly distributed here for the first time, shows a complete breakdown in ICANN's Compliance functions on every level possible. more»

European Privacy Authorities Object to ICANN Whois Proposals

In response to a letter from ICANN's Noncommercial Users Constituency (NCUC) to data protection authorities concerning overreaching requests of law enforcement agencies in ICANN's ongoing Registrar Accreditation Agreement negotiations, the Article 29 Data Protection Working Party has written the ICANN Board. more»

Is It About to Get Much Harder to Own a Domain Name?

Question: why has air travel become so painful? Because the threat posed by bad actors requires making everyone jump through hoops before letting them board a plane. To the point that, despite obvious requirements to ensure air safety, some are now openly questioning if the cure is not worse than the disease. Registering a domain name could be about to go the same way. more»