[Gnso-newgtld-wg-wt5] Action for WT5 Members - Definition of Geographic Terms

lists at christopherwilkinson.eu lists at christopherwilkinson.eu
Wed Jan 10 19:09:11 UTC 2018

Dear Liz, Dear Martin:

A few comments meanwhile:

1.	ISO 3166 is very useful as far as it goes, but it has its own intrinsic biases and lacunae.
	For instance, ISO 3166 privileges entities that are islands (‘territories’) whereas very many, more important, geographical regions are not recognised.
	To take a local example: The Isle of Man has its own 3166 code, but the whole of Scotland does not!

2.	I think that we should make it quite clear that whatever the final definition of Geo-Names becomes, those Geographical terms that are not included are excluded from Delegation.
	Also, personally, I have not taken on board the idea that if there is no agreement on a new definition, it is the 2012 AGB that prevails. I think that is politically unrealistic. 
 	If there is no agreement on a new definition, I would rather expect the whole new round to be deferred until we do.

3.	I strongly support Liz’ proposal to analyse the outcome of the 2012 round for Geo-Names. In the past 24 hours staff have released a lot of new data that I had not seen before. 
 	I may revert to that matter when I have had time to review what we have now got. Martin has already requested that all that information be posted to the WT5 wiki. Thankyou.



> On 9 Jan 2018, at 19:24, Liz Williams <liz.williams at auda.org.au> wrote:
> Hello Martin
> Thanks for giving the WT5 members the chance to start re-thinking about definitions of geographic terms to be used as policy elements of any potential update to an Applicant Guidebook.  One thing that concerns me is the ever expanding notions around what geographic terms may be as they relate to top level domains.  This is not a catch all exercise of prohibition.  We must be able to ground any review of the current definitions and then any amendments to those definitions in external and objective lists of names or rules around the use of geographic terms which is “steady state” and not subject to arbitrary interpretation and capricious change.  That is why, for example, the use of ISO3166 lists are so helpful.  
> And then I wanted to make another suggestion about additional work that might help us understand the implications of any definitions.  It is an academic exercise without great practical value if we think about the definition of names in the abstract.  I suggest that we put some effort into really understanding the impact of those definitions by doing some analysis of a) the 2012 application process; b) the lengthy evaluation process and c) the ongoing implementation of geographic terms so that we can see what happens in a real life.  
> I am happy to put together that schematic, in tandem with anyone else who is interested and, perhaps, with the help of the WG staff.  I think it is a similar process to your “risk” analysis” that you had proposed. 
> Best wishes.
> Liz
>> On 8 Jan 2018, at 10:11 pm, Martin Sutton <martin at brandregistrygroup.org <mailto:martin at brandregistrygroup.org>> wrote:
>> Dear WT5 Members,
>> One of the key areas identified during the WT5 TOR discussions related to the definition of geographic terms. This will be a priority focus for us as we begin the substantive work in WT5 and has been highlighted in recent exchanges on the PDP WG mailing list. Defining geographic terms for the purpose of top-level domains will help us to frame our overall work within WT5. 
>> To ensure that all WT5 members are working from the same set of assumptions, we would like to have discussions about the working definition of geographic names at our next meeting on 17 Jan and request input from members prior to the call.
>> If you are not familiar with the history and context of how the GNSO policies and Applicant Guidebook evolved in relation to geographic terms, the final report of the Cross Community Working Group Framework for the Use of Country and Territory Names as TLDs (CCWG-UCTN) provides a good background https://ccnso.icann.org/sites/default/files/field-attached/ccwg-ctn-final-paper-15jun17-en.pdf <https://ccnso.icann.org/sites/default/files/field-attached/ccwg-ctn-final-paper-15jun17-en.pdf>.
>> The 2012 Applicant Guidebook states the following in relation to geographic terms:
>> Geographic Names Review
>> Applications for gTLD strings must ensure that appropriate consideration is given to the interests of governments or public authorities in geographic names. The requirements and procedure ICANN will follow in the evaluation process are described in the following paragraphs. Applicants should review these requirements even if they do not believe their intended gTLD string is a geographic name. All applied-for gTLD strings will be reviewed according to the requirements in this section, regardless of whether the application indicates it is for a geographic name.
>> Treatment of Country or Territory Names6
>> Applications for strings that are country or territory names will not be approved, as they are not available under the New gTLD Program in this application round. A string shall be considered to be a country or territory name if:
>> it is an alpha-3 code listed in the ISO 3166-1 standard.
>> it is a long-form name listed in the ISO 3166-1 standard, or a translation of the long-form name in any language.
>> it is a short-form name listed in the ISO 3166-1 standard, or a translation of the short-form name in any language.
>> it is the short- or long-form name association with a code that has been designated as “exceptionally reserved” by the ISO 3166 Maintenance Agency.
>> it is a separable component of a country name designated on the “Separable Country Names List,” or is a translation of a name appearing on the list, in any language. See the Annex at the end of this module.
>> it is a permutation or transposition of any of the names included in items (i) through (v). Permutations include removal of spaces, insertion of punctuation, and addition or removal of grammatical articles like “the.” A transposition is considered a change in the sequence of the long or short–form name, for example, “RepublicCzech” or “IslandsCayman.”
>> vii. it is a name by which a country is commonly known, as demonstrated by evidence that the country is recognized by that name by an intergovernmental or treaty organization. 
>> Geographic Names Requiring Government Support
>> The following types of applied-for strings are considered geographic names and must be accompanied by documentation of support or non-objection from the relevant governments or public authorities:
>> An application for any string that is a representation, in any language, of the capital city name of any country or territory listed in the ISO 3166-1 standard.
>> An application for a city name, where the applicant declares that it intends to use the gTLD for purposes associated with the city name.
>> City names present challenges because city names may also be generic terms or brand names, and in many cases city names are not unique. Unlike other types of geographic names, there are no established lists that can be used as objective references in the evaluation process. Thus, city names are not universally protected. However, the process does provide a means for cities and applicants to work together where desired.
>> An application for a city name will be subject to the geographic names requirements (i.e., will require documentation of support or non-objection from the relevant governments or public authorities) if:
>> (a) It is clear from applicant statements within the application that the applicant will use the TLD primarily for purposes associated with the city name; and
>>   (b) The applied-for string is a city name as listed on official city documents.7
>> An application for any string that is an exact match of a sub-national place name, such as a county, province, or state, listed in the ISO 3166-2 standard.
>> An application for a string listed as a UNESCO region8 or appearing on the “Composition of macro geographical (continental) regions, geographical sub-regions, and selected economic and other groupings” list.9
>> In the case of an application for a string appearing on either of the lists above, documentation of support will be required from at least 60% of the respective national governments in the region, and there may be no more than one written statement of objection to the application from relevant governments in the region and/or public authorities associated with the continent or the region.
>> Where the 60% rule is applied, and there are common regions on both lists, the regional composition contained in the “Composition of macro geographical (continental) regions, geographical sub-regions, and selected economic and other groupings” takes precedence.
>> An applied-for gTLD string that falls into any of 1 through 4 listed above is considered to represent a geographic name. In the event of any doubt, it is in the applicant’s interest to consult with relevant governments and public authorities and enlist their support or non-objection prior to submission of the application, in order to preclude possible objections and pre-address any ambiguities concerning the string and applicable requirements.
>> Strings that include but do not match a geographic name (as defined in this section) will not be considered geographic names as defined by section, and therefore will not require documentation of government support in the evaluation process.
>> 6 Country and territory names are excluded from the process based on advice from the Governmental Advisory Committee in recent communiqués providing interpretation of Principle 2.2 of the GAC Principles regarding New gTLDs to indicate that strings which are a meaningful representation or abbreviation of a country or territory name should be handled through the forthcoming ccPDP, and other geographic strings could be allowed in the gTLD space if in agreement with the relevant government or public authority.  
>> 7 City governments with concerns about strings that are duplicates, nicknames or close renderings of a city name should not rely on the evaluation process as the primary means of protecting their interests in a string. Rather, a government may elect to file a formal objection to an application that is opposed by the relevant community, or may submit its own application for the string.
>> 8 See http://www.unesco.org/new/en/unesco/worldwide/[unesco.org] <https://urldefense.proofpoint.com/v2/url?u=http-3A__www.unesco.org_new_en_unesco_worldwide_&d=DwMGaQ&c=FmY1u3PJp6wrcrwll3mSVzgfkbPSS6sJms7xcl4I5cM&r=UAy6fqdE7uFkRCc7uzN4yui8bwTtqofadZHiQEIO1vw&m=xkyKkaMrpFHC2Y7bYkg2dZgFxuTEPoPOyK6Gp8VdOjo&s=BFlNnYVG3cWU8E7WYL8IM3sAhljIgoJIlNXg7FOY0ZE&e=>.
>> 9 See http://unstats.un.org/unsd/methods/m49/m49regin.htm[unstats.un.org] <https://urldefense.proofpoint.com/v2/url?u=http-3A__unstats.un.org_unsd_methods_m49_m49regin.htm&d=DwMGaQ&c=FmY1u3PJp6wrcrwll3mSVzgfkbPSS6sJms7xcl4I5cM&r=UAy6fqdE7uFkRCc7uzN4yui8bwTtqofadZHiQEIO1vw&m=xkyKkaMrpFHC2Y7bYkg2dZgFxuTEPoPOyK6Gp8VdOjo&s=OUphKkFDZowCxK0Owp9DX4kk3oafMaWuFbNFUpKV-CE&e=>. 
>> For a potential new applicant guidebook, we need a consensus driven common understanding of geographic identifiers to provide clarity to potential applicants. We would like to gather input from WT5 members, specifically whether the current definition is fit for purpose or not.  If you think there should be changes, specify what these would be (additions, deletions) and the rationale for adding or removing any elements of the definition.
>> Please submit your comments, ideally by 15 Jan, to provide an opportunity to discuss the input during our next call. 
>> To submit your comment, please use the following link to the document or submit via email specifying:
>> 1. Contributor name
>> 2. Addition/deletion/amendment to definition
>> 3. Rationale to support the change
>> This will then be added to the google doc which is available here (https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1ooKmb576MQJvpHyDYOlJE3M2-Ssnv-SSgVfroT3D7Fc/edit?usp=sharing <https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1ooKmb576MQJvpHyDYOlJE3M2-Ssnv-SSgVfroT3D7Fc/edit?usp=sharing>) for those that may wish to populate the document directly.  Please do not amend any other entries as this document will not track changes.
>> We look forward to receiving your input.
>> Kind regards
>> WT5 Co-Leaders
>> Annebeth Lange
>> Christopher Wilkinson
>> Martin Sutton
>> Olga Cavalli
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