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ANA “Vigorously” Opposes Implementation of ICANN’s New gTLD Program, Citing Major Flaws

In a letter to Mr. Rod Beckstrom, President, Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN), the Association of National Advertisers (ANA) has expressed major flaws in ICANN’s program for introducing new generic Top-Level Domains. A program which ANA warns would allow as many as 1,000 new Top-Level Domains in the first year and the same cap every year thereafter.

“By introducing confusion into the marketplace and increasing the likelihood of cybersquatting and other malicious conduct, the ICANN top-level domain program diminishes the power of trademarks to serve as strong, accurate and reliable symbols of source and quality in the marketplace,” says Bob Liodice, President and CEO, ANA

UPDATE Aug 9, 2011: ICANN Responds to Robert Liodice of ANA

In a letter released today from ICANN, Rod Beckstrom, President and CEO writes:

We are in receipt of your letter of 4 August 2011. The development and implementation of the New gTLD Program is consistent with and has been driven by ICANN’s multi-stakeholder model, core values and responsibilities as documented in the Affirmation of Commitments.

Acting in the public interest, ICANN supports and defends the bottom-up, multi-stakeholder model that has produced carefully crafted policies that promote competition and user choice while creating a safer, more stable Domain Name System.
The assertions in your letter are either incorrect or problematic in several respects. Perhaps the most severe mischaracterizations concern the ICANN process.

The entire ICANN Internet community, including businesses, ISPs, intellectual property holders and experts, governments, registries and registrars, and representatives of Internet users around the world—carefully considered the implications of the New gTLD Program at each stage of the process. A strong consensus for moving forward was demonstrated by the Generic Names Supporting Organization’s super-majority approval and by the active participation of all these groups in determining the details of implementation.

Opening the name space to the introduction of new gTLDs in a responsible manner was one of the main objectives of the U.S. Government and interested stakeholders present at ICANN’s creation.1 The June 2011 decision to proceed with the program followed six years of inclusive policy development and implementation planning. Significant actions have been taken to balance the concerns of all interested parties, provide protections for rightsholders, registrants and users, and to ensure that the security, stability, and resiliency of the Internet are not compromised.

Multiple public meetings and at least 45 lengthy public comment periods were conducted and thousands of comments, representing a broad range of interests, were received.

The full letter available here on ICANN’s website.

By CircleID Reporter

CircleID’s internal staff reporting on news tips and developing stories. Do you have information the professional Internet community should be aware of? Contact us.

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