TAS glitch will call in to question digital archery for new TLDs

Will applicants trust results of digital archery?

ICANN’s announcement that some sensitive new TLD applicant information could have been accessed is sure to cause more doubt about its planned “digital archery” scheme.

The so-called digital archery plan will be used to help determine how top level domain applicants are slotted in queue. Applicants essentially pick a time, login to a special web page, and click a submit button as close to that time as possible.

This idea sounded rather suspect to me from the beginning. It’s really a way to patch up an issue that the new TLD guidebook could have addressed early on — applicant slotting.

But ICANN’s recent technical snafus will place a dark cloud of digital archery, too.

If ICANN has a security glitch in a program that isn’t time sensitive, how will it manage to fairly run digital archery? Will it be gamed? Will it be accurate?

In a high stakes game with millions of dollars at stake, any existing confidence in ICANN’s technical systems for new TLDs has been shattered.


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