[bc-gnso] FW: NYTimes Calls for Slowdown of New gTLD Program

Michael D. Palage michael at palage.com
Mon Dec 26 20:07:32 UTC 2011



I actually found Kieran's blog piece the more news worth development, see


Best regards,




From: owner-bc-gnso at icann.org [mailto:owner-bc-gnso at icann.org] On Behalf Of
Phil Corwin
Sent: Monday, December 26, 2011 2:16 PM
To: bc-gnso at icann.org
Subject: [bc-gnso] FW: NYTimes Calls for Slowdown of New gTLD Program










December 25, 2011

Expanding Internet Domains

Come January, the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers plans
to allow businesses, nonprofits and others to apply for their own "top-level
domain" with their own online suffix, like the familiar .com and .org
suffixes that now rule the Internet. 

Icann, the nonprofit that manages the Internet's address system, says
increasing the number of top-level domains will ease crowding and create
opportunities for businesses to connect with consumers. For instance, Canon
plans to buy .canon to put its Web sites in one spot and the American
Bankers Association is reportedly considering .bank, where banks could offer
secure online banking. 

But a plethora of new suffixes is just as likely to cause confusion for
consumers and enable malefactors to use the new arenas for deception. Icann
expects 500 to 1,000 applications in next year's 90-day application window.
Before it approves any of them, it needs to slow down and put in place
better safeguards against consumer fraud. 

The expansion of top domains could be costly for businesses, which might
have to buy new domains (Icann is charging $185,000 per application) to
protect their brands from fraudsters making money by squatting on brands.
The Web is full of sites that masquerade as legitimate companies to sell
pirated goods or steal consumers' financial information. Fraudsters avoid
detection by registering their sites using proxy services and false
identities. The administrators of the online address system - Icann, the
registries that operate suffixes like VeriSign, and agents like GoDaddy that
sell Internet addresses to the public - are doing a terrible job curbing
fraud. A recent Icann report acknowledged that the system to identify Web
site owners "is broken and needs to be repaired." 

Icann says it will increase security in the new domains, including thorough
background checks of all applicants. There will be a clearinghouse for
owners of trademarks, who would get first dibs on domains connected to their
brand. If anybody but the Coca-Cola Company applied for .coke, he or she
would have to prove a legitimate, non-infringing reason to run it. And there
would be a "rapid takedown" procedure to close infringing domains. 

But companies will still have to spend a lot on defense, registering domains
to avoid squatting on their brands and keeping an eye out for potentially
infringing Web sites across hundreds of new suffixes. And Icann's current
inability to deal with abusive domain name registrations undermines
confidence in its ability to address the risks of this vast expansion. 

The Federal Trade Commission is rightly urging
<http://www.ftc.gov/opa/2011/12/icann.shtm>  Icann to require that
registries and registrars be able to verify the identity of owners of all
domains that have a commercial purpose, and to impose meaningful penalties
for those who break the rules. There is no pressing need to create hundreds
of new suffixes next year. It would be far better for Icann to start with a
pilot program to work out problems before expanding the system. 


Philip S. Corwin, Founding Principal

Virtualaw LLC

1155 F Street, NW

Suite 1050

Washington, DC 20004





"Luck is the residue of design" -- Branch Rickey


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