12 July 2013

Report into abusive domain names makes for worrying reading

The introduction of thousands of new Internet extensions in the next year is going to make the Internet less secure if a new report is anything to go by.

The "namespace quality index" produced by domain consultants Architelos is the first time a comprehensive review of abuse of the domain name system has been undertaken. It makes for interesting, and worrying, reading.

9 May 2013
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The Governmental Advisory Committee (GAC) holds a unique and powerful role within ICANN.

Although it is only advisory, the GAC represents the views of the world's governments and so its formal "advice" is taken extremely seriously: to the extent that if the ICANN Board does not agree with GAC advice, it is obliged to try to reach agreement or provide a clear explanation for why it does not intend to follow the advice.

3 May 2013

Below is Annex 1 to the Governmental Advisory Committee's (GAC) communique to the ICANN Board delivered on 11 April 2013 in Beijing. It concerns a series of "safeguards" for new gTLDs.

Safeguards on New gTLDs

The GAC considers that Safeguards should apply to broad categories of strings. For clarity, this means any application for a relevant string in the current or future rounds, in all languages applied for. The GAC advises the Board that all safeguards highlighted in this document as well as any other safeguard requested by the ICANN Board and/or implemented by the new gTLD registry and registrars should:

3 April 2013

DNS security and stability report big on bark, light on bite

Operator of the dot-com registry and the Internet's primary address book, Verisign, has warned that a plan to add hundreds of new Internet extensions over the next year may destabilize the domain name system if key issues are not addressed.

In a report from the company's technical labs to the organization running the "new gTLD" program, ICANN, the Internet infrastructure company warns that there could be "significant consequences" if the program does not address technical issues before the program launches that could "perhaps even destabilize global operations of the DNS".

4 March 2013

Announcement marks start of a busy year and changing industry

WhatBox? has announced it will use a joint collaboration of NameJet and Afternic to auction domain names under its dot-menu gTLD.

The announcement marks what will soon be an explosion in efforts to sell "premium" domain names to the highest bidder as well as encourage large businesses to register domains under certain extensions.

27 February 2013

If you have a better solution to the issue, let's hear it

Atallah: Surprised at the strong reaction to suggested contract changes.

ICANN COO Akram Atallah has responded to a wave of angry responses from the DNS industry over proposed changes to new registry contracts by asking it to "step up to the plate" and provide solutions to real problems.

Over 30 responses arrived on the last day of a public comment period on the revised contract, most of them highly critical. Key groups within the organization accused the organization of imposing top-down solutions, that the proposal contained "serious and fundamental flaws" and the revisions amounted to "nothing more than a power grab by ICANN staff".

27 February 2013

Webinar turns tables on ICANN

The companies that run much of the domain name system are pushing a contractual dispute with overseeing organization ICANN public.

In an unusual move, the Registry Stakeholder Group of ICANN (RySG), which represents all the registries currently under contract with ICANN, and the New gTLD Applicant Group (NTAG), which represents more than half of the 1,930 applications for new Internet registries, have published an invitation for a public teleconference to discuss the proposed contract changes.

Anyone interested is invited to attend the online meeting on Monday, March 4, 2013 at 1500 UTC through the address Those who wish to speak will have to call in and use the password "RY"; call-in numbers are provided on the invitation.

26 February 2013

Last minute flood of angry responses to new gTLD comment period

The domain name industry has responded angrily to an attempt by oversight organization ICANN to make last-minute changes to a contract covering new Internet extensions.

On the last day of a 21-day public comment period over the proposed changes, ICANN received 31 responses (40 in total). Most significant among them were joint letters from stakeholder groups within the organization all of which were highly critical of proposed changes to the registry contract for new gTLDs.

23 February 2013

And why that's good news for the DNS industry

Insurance company Chartis is the latest company to withdrawal from a namesake new Internet extension (dot-chartis), claiming back $130,000 of its $185,000 application fee.

The news comes just days after the new gTLD program run by ICANN was dealt a blow with the withdrawal of five applications from General Motors (the car industry has embraced the program) and with toy-maker Hasbro dropping its dot-transformers application, despite having a savvy Net audience thanks to recent blockbuster movies featuring the camouflaging robots.

In the case of Chartis, however, the withdrawal - and recent changes announced to its application - are good news for the program since they highlight the far greater importance that new gTLDs are going to have in the global economy starting next year.

19 February 2013

The Public Interest Registry has opened pre-registration for dot-ngo domains, encouraging non-profits and non-governmental organizations to indicate early interest in the registry.

Registration is through a simple online form and does not represent a commitment to purchase a domain (PIR is calling the process an "expression of interest"), but it will mean that organizations receive useful information and updates as the application progresses through to approval.

PIR's Chief Operating Officer Nancy Gofus explained to .Nxt that PIR expects dot-ngo domains (as well as the French version, dot-ong) to go live in early 2014 but that she wanted to reach out to the non-profit community early and "inform them of the steps they can take now".

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