This applicant, like most organizations, takes its good reputation seriously. We are fully cognizant, for example, that artistic, political, economic and social issues, all of which can be associated with the fashion industry, often provoke heated debate and are at times controversial. However, we recognize and support the free speech rights of both registrants and Internet users as fundamental rights and believe that such free speech rights are important to the success of the .FASHION business plan. We believe that any plan to stifle free speech would be more harmful to .FASHION’s reputation and business success than any attempt by us to govern speech. That being said, to protect .FASHION’s reputation and the associational benefits it offers registrants and Internet consumers, we will actively promote and enforce our Acceptable Use and Abuse Prevention policies and procedures, which we believe will effectively combat improper or unlawful unprotected speech and online conduct. We believe that these mechanisms will be effective in assuring the reputation of the .FASHION top-level domain, its registrants, Internet Users, as well as the public.
The .FASHION top-level domain will be marketed to registrants who want to associate themselves, their products, services, thoughts, ideas or anything else in a positive way with the fashion industry, as well as to those who want to communicate with them in an easily identifiable way. Therefore we believe that the great majority of registrants who apply for a .FASHION domain name will do so because of its association with or because they want to reach those who do, and not for other reasons. In these ways, the .FASHION top-level domain will bring a special association with the fashion industry to the top-level domain name space.
We are dedicated to protection of third-party rights and prevention of abusive uses of the .FASHION domain name. We intend to achieve this goal by crafting our Naming Policy, Acceptable Use Policy, and other policies to be readily understandable and easily accessible, and by making sure that our mechanisms for enforcing rights and preventing abuse (such as our Complaint Resolution Service) operate effectively, efficiently, and fairly. In addition, we will ensure that they work symbiotically with other ICANN-mandated rights protection mechanisms such as the UDRP.
We have crafted a draft framework for registration of .FASHION domains that fully supports the goals and benefits set forth above. Our draft registration framework is based on advice from ICANN, WIPO, applicable laws, and a variety of other expert sources. Specifically, the .FASHION draft framework includes these interrelated sets of agreements setting forth our policies and regulations, all of which registrants must agree to be bound by:
- The Registrant Agreement, which registrars contracted with .FASHION must present to registrants. This is a collateral agreement to the Registrar Registry Agreement (detailed below), and will bind registrants to .FASHION’s Acceptable Use Policy (as detailed below), .FASHION’s Privacy & Whois Policy (detailed below), ICANN-mandated rights protection mechanisms (including the Universal Dispute Resolution Policy (“UDRP”), and the Complaint Resolution Service;
- The Acceptable Use Policy (“AUP”), which details the proper use of domain names that end in .FASHION, which is incorporated by reference in the Registrant Agreement that registrants must agree to;
- The Privacy and Whois Policy, which describes how a registrant’s personal data is to be used, which is also incorporated by reference in the Registrant Agreement;
- The Registrar-Registry Agreement, which is the contract between .FASHION and its ICANN-accredited registrars, which sets forth, inter alia, the duties and obligations of the registrar with respect to .FASHION registrants and the .FASHION registry; and
- The Naming Policy, which sets out .FASHION’s policies governing prohibited, blocked or reserved domain names.
These agreements and policies are designed to ensure transparent and non-discriminatory policies for the registration of .FASHION names; fair and competitive pricing; protection of personal data and privacy; adherence by registrars and registrants to the AUP; protection of trademarks, the names of natural and legal persons and other property rights; prevention of the registration of illegal terms; and the prevention violations of the law. Moreover, our policies promote competition among registrars, combat abuse of the DNS, address cybercrime, protect intellectual property rights, and align the .FASHION top-level domain with applicable regulatory and legislative environments and Internet registry best practices.
These policies will effectively support the key mission, purposes and goals of the .FASHION top-level domain, which is to allow registrants who want to associate themselves with, while at the same time protecting third-party rights and preventing abuse.
We specifically examined more restrictive registration policies, such as limiting registration to members of organizations with a specific tie to the fashion industry. We rejected such limitations because they would interfere with .FASHION’s primary mission, purpose and goals--which is to encourage as many registrants as possible to associate themselves with the fashion industry for any legal purpose. Factors that we took into account when considering a more restrictive registration policy included:
- Our recognition that registrants of a .FASHION domain name will self-select because they have an interest in the fashion industry, naturally reducing the number of potential registrants; and, because restrictive policies such as, for example, requiring membership in a specific organization or organizations, would exclude many legitimate registrants from obtaining a .FASHION domain name. For example, and by way of illustration, if membership an organization were required for registration, businesses and charitable organizations that would find a .FASHION top-level domain name an effective marketing tool would be excluded from registering a .FASHION domain name as they might not be eligible to be members in an organization that accepted only natural persons for membership.
With respect to protecting registrant privacy and confidential information, we will comply with all applicable ICANN rules, including Whois policies, and all applicable laws, rules and regulations of appropriate jurisdictions. Registrant privacy and use of confidential information are set forth in our Privacy & Whois Policy. Information concerning updates and changes to the Privacy & Whois Policy will be promptly and prominently displayed on the .FASHION web site.
.FASHION’s back-end registry services provider will also be required to employ industry-standard procedures to prevent the unauthorized or illegal access of registrant privacy or confidential information.
With respect to users, .FASHION’s Registration Agreement will require that all registrants comply with any and all applicable laws, rules or regulations concerning user privacy and confidential information for applicable jurisdictions; failure to do so may result in suspension or loss of their .FASHION name and may, in addition, result in legal actions by appropriate authorities.
We plan to minimize social costs primarily through clearly written, widely disseminated, and easy-to-understand policies. Our Acceptable Use Policy clearly delineates unacceptable behavior and prohibited content by registrants using domain names in the .FASHION zone.
Our rules concerning applications for the same domain name establish clearly delineated rules, and will be published well in advance. They provide adequate safeguards for the rights of all participants as well as expeditious and cost-effective challenge procedures in the event of disputes.
During the Sunrise period and Landrush periods, multiple applications for the same name will be resolved by auction. UDRP or URS will be used if there are disputes as to rights to a name.
After Sunrise and Landrush, domain names will be allotted on a first-come, first-serve basis. All domains are subject to UDRP and URS challenges.
At all times, .FASHION’s Complaint Resolution Service will be available to registrants and the public in the case of alleged prohibited use or content.
.FASHION does not envision special discounts for different classes of registrants, but may consider such offers in the future. We may offer introductory discounts for first-time registrants in .FASHION. Bulk registration discounts are not being considered at this time.
.FASHION plans to make contractual commitments to registrants regarding the magnitude of price increases. .FASHION will contract with its registrars that any percentage increase in renewal and first registration fees will be applied uniformly across all registrations, and that notice of any price increases will be provided on the registrar’s website and by the registrar to registrants via email six months or more in advance.