[Gnso-newgtld-wg] Use Requirement for 2nd round new gTLDs
dorraink at amazon.com
Wed Nov 20 19:48:36 UTC 2019
First, you’ve beat this horse many times before and, as I recall, no one has agreed that this is even an issue.
But to humor the merits of your argument:
I’m sure in your world business plans are firm, do not evolve, and never change. With that paradigm you will naturally assume that the plan all along was to, in your words “shut down a vertical.” In fact, the entire current way much of the ICANN community views TLDs is through the lens that there is only one business model:
Step 1: offer a minimal and sometimes steeply priced sunrise to comply with minimum requirements to protect IP and to make as much money as possible from brand owners; and
Step 2: sell as many domains as possible (here, you will note, “use” is irrelevant since you’re fine if all of those sales are to domain investors who will treat them as commodities).
(by the way, and for clarity, I have no problems with the model identified above, my problem is with the assumption that all gTLD operators should be forced to follow it)
This does not reflect reality. Business ideas come and go, funding comes and goes. ICANN policies (shortsightedly) restrict how registry operators can use their TLDs (see step 2 above for the preferred approach). Your proposal assumes that business plans and funding are static and that plans to “startup right away” are never foiled by reality. In your scenarios, perhaps “BabiAla” suddenly gets internal funding for a business plan - their initial lack of funding would have disqualified them until that funding was secure. Perhaps the “CWA” had great intentions (and therefore ticked the box) but due to a change in administration, the group lost interest, they could not actually launch. You’ve attempted to play god with the best laid plans of businesses and have only created new problems to solve a problem NO ONE EVEN AGREES EXISTS.
The new gTLDs that are active have not sold out of domains yet, the market is fine. Others are choosing to find the right use case for a TLD – opting not to participate in business model set out above. Let’s stop accusing businesses of bad faith (claims that the intent was to “shut down a vertical” are just that) just because they haven’t found the right niche given all the ICANN business restrictions.
Senior Corporate Counsel | gTLD Registry
dorraink at amazon.com<mailto:dorraink at amazon.com>| 206-740-9339
From: Gnso-newgtld-wg <gnso-newgtld-wg-bounces at icann.org> On Behalf Of Alexander Schubert
Sent: Wednesday, November 20, 2019 9:58 AM
To: gnso-newgtld-wg at icann.org
Subject: Re: [Gnso-newgtld-wg] Use Requirement for 2nd round new gTLDs
I also have a new idea how to prevent gTLD-warehousing and attempts by big corporations to shut down entire verticals: E.g. a (imaginary) big Chinese Online Bookstore “BabiAla” applying for “.book” in Chinse script – only to never start a Sunrise phase; effectively “shutting down” the vertical.
· Have a “Early Startup” Commitment checkbox in the application form.
· If an applicant checks the box (which he isn’t required to do) they would be prioritized over those who haven’t (similar to the Community Priority).
· Real world example:
o BabiAla wants to shut down the vertical “.book” (in Chinese) – has no plans to start up quickly (enter into sunrise within 9 month after testing) – doesn’t tick the “Early Startup” check box
o The “Chinese Writers Association” would also apply for .book in Chinse script; plans to startup right away and DOES commit to Early Startup (checks the Early Startup Check Box)
o In that case priority would be provided to Chinese Writers Association’s application, and BabiAla’s application would be withdrawn by ICANN. The Chinese Writers Association would prevail the contention based on their Early Startup Commitment.
This would allow those who do NOT have any startup plans to still be able to apply – but prioritize those who can commit to startup ASAP. It would put a pressure on big corporations who want to “shut down” verticals – as they have to fear that potential contention would be get prioritized. It would also slow down warehousing for exactly the same reason.
This was an issue in 2012 already – but now we face a situation where the application fees might go as low as US $50 (hopefully not) AND “One Stop Solution Providers” are already offering to execute application processing (incl. contracting and testing) for US $50k for the 2nd round (a friend of mine is offering that). At US $100k plus 25k per year big corporations will JUMP on “shutting down” their killer industry keyword. Even if you look at a 10 year period: it’s MUCH cheaper than the identical .com domain! So if I can shut down a gTLD for a decade at a price lower than the .com domain: it’s a NO-BRAINER! An Early Startup Priority would create an obstacle – and should prevent a number of “actors” from engaging in questionable actions.
From: Alexander Schubert [mailto:alexander at schubert.berlin]
Sent: Mittwoch, 20. November 2019 11:49
To: 'gnso-newgtld-wg at icann.org' <gnso-newgtld-wg at icann.org<mailto:gnso-newgtld-wg at icann.org>>
Subject: Use Requirement for 2nd round new gTLDs
As discussed on the call yesterday here a brief suggestion regarding a “use requirement”. First a summary of my suggestion:
The new RA (Registry Agreement) should contain a clause that denies contract renewal if registries have not had a Sunrise registration phase (Spec-13 Brand Registries would be exempted from this clause).
Here my rationale for this:
Obviously the 2007 PDP demanded a use requirement. Hence currently registries face steep penalties for not contracting (application will be withdrawn) and not testing/entering the root (cancelation of the contract).
Let’s be cognizant of the 3 gTLD categories that emerged in 2012:
1. Spec 13 gTLDs (Brands)
2. Geo gTLDs (mainly cities)
3. All others
We can’t always find “one size fits all” solutions – and claim that in absence of a global solution we will not create ANY solution at all. That said: I can’t speak for the category 1. And as Martin Sutton said on the Monday GNSO call: if “use” was defined by “number of domains”: nothing more easy than registering a number of domains. So yes: for brand gTLDs it’s nifty to “define” a “use requirement” – maybe someone else can come up with a solution for Spec-13 registries.
BUT: For categories 2 and 3 I think the solution is simple! We already steeply penalize if the prospective registry doesn’t contract or engage in testing. There are grace periods to do so (I think 9 month). We could use the same grace period for “startup” – which is opening the string up for registrations in Sunrise!
At BARE minimum we should put into the new RA (Registry Agreement) that failure for categories 2 and 3 (non-Spec-13 registries) to startup (start sunrise) WILL be a reason to deny contract renewal! A DECADE of not starting up should be a clear sign of failure.
This solution is NOT impacting Spec 13 applicants. We can discuss separately whether or not we wish to add a “use requirement” for them as well. This solution would also NOT impact 2012 round new gTLDs.
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