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The SocialDNS Project… and Why DNS is Not the Phone Book of the Internet

In this article I will explain the motivations behind the SocialDNS Project. I will justify why the DNS system is NOT the phone book of the Internet. More concretely, DNS is not a public directory nor enables search mechanisms over meta-information related to domains. In this line, I will present the advantages of SocialDNS, a naming and directory system that aims to become the phone book of the Web. SocialDNS is NOT another alternative DNS root nor aims to replace the current DNS for resolving domain names. It complements the existing DNS to offer advanced services that are beyond the scope of the existing infrastructure for Web settings. more

Domain Name Theft, Fraud And Regulations

When it comes to domain name disputes, no domain name has captured more media attention than sex.com. Of course, disputes about sex often obtain a great deal of attention, and the sex.com domain name dispute can grab its share of headlines because the case involves sex, theft, declared bankruptcy, a once-thriving Internet porn business, and fraud, instead of the typical cybersquatting allegations. Indeed, this case is remarkable for its potential impact on the development of caselaw concerning whether there is a valid basis to assume that trademark interests should overwhelm all non-commercial interests in the use of domain names. The answer is no, but the caselaw to support that answer is in tension with cases that strongly imply a contrary conclusion. more

Addressing Technical and Operational Needs with TechOps

In the ICANN realm, TechOps stands for Technical and Operations and its goal is to simplify processes, to find solutions, and to advise on technical and operational matters. There are three TechOps groups: The Registry, the Registrar and the joint Registry and Registrar, also known as Contracted Party House (CPH). How did we get there and what exactly are we doing? more

Your Trademark Sucks.com

Recent attention to the Eighth Circuit decision in Coca-Cola v. Purdy brings to mind the class of sometimes difficult cases involving the use of another's trademark as a domain name for criticism. An ICANN UDRP decision, Full Sail Inc. v. Ryan Spevack, Case No. D2003-0502 (WIPO October 3, 2003), by Mark VB Partridge, presiding panelist, with Frederick M. Abbott and G. Gervaise Davis III, included a review and analysis of the "your trademark sucks.com" cases that remains a useful reference worthy (I hope) of the lengthy quote below. more

About Those Root Servers

There is an interesting note on the ITU Strategy and Policy Unit Newslog about Root Servers, Anycast, DNSSEC, WGIG and WSIS about a presentation to ICANN's GAC. (The GAC website appears to be offline or inaccessible today.) The interesting sentence is this: Lack of formal relationship with root server operators is a public policy issue relevant to Internet governance. It is stated that this is "wrong" and "not a way to solve the issues about who edits the [root] zone file." Let's look at that lack of a formal relationship... more

Domain Registry Models: Thin or Thick?

The domain registrars discussion -- despite the occasional bizarrity -- mostly demonstrates that there is no unanimity among registrars on this issue. So, what arguments can be made in favor of either model, from a registrant's point of view? The thick domain registry model -- under the assumption that registries are more diligent with registrant data than some registrars may be -- helps take care of escrow concerns... more

An Infrastructure TLD: Avoiding the Side Effects of Today’s .Net

I've mentioned before that there is something special about the .net top level domain - in particular .net is the place where the legacy root DNS servers and most of the TLD servers are to be found. Thus, if .net were to wobble there is more than a strong chance that the DNS root and other TLDs would also begin to wobble. This kind of cross-dependency is something that A) is a risk to overall internet stability and B) is something that ICANN seems utterly unable to perceive. more

Google’s Free Public DNS Load Tops VeriSign, Raising Dot-Com Contract Tender Question

Google revealed on its official blog today that it is handling an average of more than 70 billion requests per day on its free Public DNS service. According to VeriSign's latest public statistics, it is handling only an average of 59 billion DNS requests per day, less than that handled by Google. more

Objections to .XXX, Attention in High Places

Dot XXX is in for some interesting times, I fear. First the ICANN GAC chair Sharil Tarmizi is suggesting that more time be given for government and public policy feedback on .XXX. Objections certainly have started to come in from rather high places, such as from the US Department of Commerce. Personally speaking I'm inclined to be in favor of .XXX because it at least gives people in the adult entertainment industry their own online space and a stronger voice (gTLD)... more

Story Behind .ASIA

After releasing .travel and .jobs (hey, steve.jobs up for bidding!), ICANN said they will look at .xxx and .asia next. (via Chiao) "Vint Cerf: ...of those, we have had fairly extensive discussion about .asia and .xxx. We continue to evaluate those. The others will be attended to as we can get to them. But i want to say for the record that we will attempt within the next 30 days to come to a conclusion one way or the other about .asia and .xxx so these will be on a board call sometime within that period." Chiao called .ASIA "more or less like a joint venture among APxx organizations". I say nonsense! Don't let appearance fool you. more

Go Daddy Sues VeriSign Over Site Finder

Go Daddy Software, Inc. has filed a lawsuit in Federal District Court in Arizona against VeriSign Inc., seeking a temporary restraining order against VeriSign's new Site Finder service, a paid-advertising page VeriSign has established on the Internet to which the traffic associated with mistyped, and other, domain names will be directed. Go Daddy's lawsuit claims that VeriSign is misusing its position as the .com and .net domain registry to gain an unfair competitive advantage by intercepting (and profiting from) internet traffic resulting from the scores of invalid domain names that are typed into users' browsers on a daily basis. more

PIR’s Anti-Abuse Policy for .ORG Offers No Due Process for Innocent Domain Registrants

PIR, the registry operator for .org, has sent notices to registrars that it is implementing an anti-abuse policy that offers no due process for innocent domain registrants... While it's good intentioned, there is great potential for innocent domain registrants to suffer harm, given the lack of appropriate safeguards, the lack of precision and open-ended definition of "abuse", the sole discretion of the registry operator to delete domains, and the general lack of due process. more

Invalid WHOIS Data: Who Is Responsible?

Suppose you wanted to know who operates a website at a given domain name. Perhaps you suspect that the domain name is pointing to a website that offers illegal content, or you may just want to send a comment to its authors. Conveniently, the Internet provides a so-called "WHOIS" system that ordinarily provides contact information for each registered domain. But in the case of many hundreds of thousands of domains, the WHOIS data just isn't accurate.  more

The Number Resource Organization (NRO) Issues Inspection Request to ICANN Concerning the .ORG Sale

The Number Resource Organization (NRO), acting as the Address Supporting Organization (ASO), today announced it has submitted correspondence to ICANN regarding the Internet Society's proposed transfer of ownership of PIR, the .org registry, to Ethos Capital. more

Report on Reaction to Zuccarini’s Arrest

On September 3, 2003, United States federal law enforcement officers arrested the notorious John Zuccarini accused of allegedly creating misleading domain names to deceive children and direct them to pornographic websites. Zuccarini's arrest is the first to be made under the Truth in Domain Names Act, which took effect earlier this year prohibiting people from creating misleading domain names as a means to deceive children into viewing content that's harmful to minors, or tricking adults into clicking on obscene websites. What follows is a collection of commentaries made by experts in response to this event...
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