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ICANN Approves New TLD Program

ICANN board gives green light to new TLD program, but there’s still work to be done.

ICANN’s Board of Directors has approved the new top level domain name program to a round of applause in Singapore Monday morning, although there’s a lot of work still to be done.

The resolution approving the program provides for more discussion on various parts of the plan to roll out hundreds of new top level domain names. One of the big areas is registry-registrar cross ownership.

The plan is to start the communications period (read: marketing) for new top level domain names immediately, but not accept applications until January 12, 2012. The application period would end April 12, 2012 and initial evaluations will be published in November 2012. That means new TLDs might come online in 2013.

It seems that there are only a couple things that could derail these dates now: pressure from the U.S. government over the IANA contract or a lawsuit with an injunction.

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  1. Why Bother? says

    Why bother?

    Did ya catch the timeline calling for the names to go into effect in 2014? Ha! Honestly, do ya think that will allow .COM ample time to solidify itself as the de facto standard extension — as if it hasn’t already?

    If .TRAVEL, .AERO, .JOBS, .COOP, .MOBI and .MUSEUM were all uber .FAILS, what makes anyone think these will be different? As a friendly reminder: those TLDs were identified by the old ICANN board as representing categories with the highest need for TLD growth. We know how that story ended.

    What makes this sequel any different?

    Nothing to see here people. Continue on your way. Keep buying your .COM domains. As with conventional real estate, they are a good investment cuz they are simply not being made any more. Get them while you still can afford to.

  2. Brad says

    President/CEO Rod Beckstrom –

    “Some claim that icann stands to profit from this new program. this is not true. the program will be run on a cost recovery basis as designed by you, the community, and as approved by the icann board. if approved by the icann board.”

    So ICANN is going to take $185,000+ in application fees for 500-1000 extensions, auction fees for contested extensions, and ICANN registration fees and somehow be “revenue neutral”. Does anyone really believe that? Honestly.

    This would never have been approved if it was not in the self interest of ICANN.


  3. Brad says

    My thoughts on the New gTLD program –

    Well it now it was approved by ICANN, did they open Pandora’s Box?

    I think there are A LOT of legal hurdles and challenges to still be cleared.

    1.) If multiple parties want the same extension, what happens?

    Do they go to auction? What about BS TMs already for new extensions that don’t exist?

    Should the high bidder for a generic extension be able to block any competitors from owning a domain.

    For instance Sony is the high bidder for .MUSIC, should they be able to block any competitor from using it?

    2.) What about confusingly similar extensions, typo extensions, etc.

    What happens if someone wants .CON, a great .COM typo extension?

    What if someone wants an extension that is confusingly similar to a current ccTLD?

    Should .USA be allowed to exist when .US already exists and is the ccTLD of the United States? I think that whole extension would be “confusingly similar”.

    As far as I was aware, one of the foundations of this program was to not introduce any extensions that are confusingly similar to current extensions.

    3.) Should potentially offensive extensions like .porn, .sex, .gay, etc be able to legally extort brand owners for payment like .XXX has done?

    This program needs to be rolled out in a very measured manner. Starting with less debated extensions.

    There needs to be a process for how generic keyword extensions are handled and policies regarding them.

    The process needs to be transparent and well regulated.


  4. Jeff says

    Whoo Hoo! Congrats on getting this passed after six years of trying.

    But why bother? … Haven’t we already learned from the failures of .AERO, .TRAVEL, .COOP, .MUSEUM … that the world simply doesn’t WANT additional TLDs? … ICANN had previously concluded [these] represented the largest need and demand.

    Those who fail to learn from history are doomed to repeat it. … This whole thing is destined to be a great big .FAIL.

  5. Mark says

    We have enough worthless Extensions .. Bad move IMO ~ Not surprising in the least either.

    I find it funny this news was posted on my Facebook feed just a few lines before Dynadot announced it is allowing .EU to be registered for 1$ until June 30th (And no , I am not connected to Dynadot). I wouldn’t waste a dollar on them to be honest …

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