Implementation Recommendation Team (IRT) Announced for New gTLDs

March 29, 2009

The Intellectual Property Constituency (IPC), at the direction of the ICANN Board, has announced it has formed an Implementation Recommendation Team (IRT) to provide possible solutions for Trademark and other Intellectual Property issues regarding the new gTLDs.

Among the team members are Russell Pangborn, Managing Attorney for Microsoft Corporation, J. Scott Evans, Senior Director-Legal for Yahoo! Inc., and Fabricio Vayra, Counsel, Intellectual Property for Time Warner Inc.  See the full list here.

The first face-to-face working meeting is scheduled for April 1st.  The team will issue its first draft report by April 24th, and a final report on May 24th which will be open for public comment.

The ICANN press release on the IRT can be found here.

Second Draft of New gTLD Applicant Guidebook Released by ICANN

March 25, 2009

ICANN’s second draft of the new generic Top-Level Domains Applicant Guidebook (gTLD) has been released.   The public comment period for this new draft is open and ICANN will accept comments through April 13, 2009.

ICANN has clarified several issues, including proposed reduction in ongoing “Registry-Level Fees” from US$75,000 per year to US$25,000 per year.

The application fees are divided into the following:

  • TAS User Registration Fee: US$100 – This fee enables the user to enter the online application system.
  • gTLD Evaluation Fee: US$185,000 – This fee is set to recover costs associated with the new gTLD program and ensure that the program is fully funded, and doesn’t take resources from other ICANN funding sources.

An interesting note on the gTLD Evaluation Fee is that Participants in ICANN’s proof-of-concept application process in 2000 may be eligible for a credit toward the evaluation fee. The credit is in the amount of US$86,000 and is subject to meeting additional criteria.

If an extended review of an application is required, an additional Registry Services Review Fee of US$50,000 may be required.

Unfortunately it appears that concerns and objections raised in the first comment period, such as protection for Trademark holders and economic viability analysis, are still not addressed.

Follow all the news on ICANN’s New gTLD Program here.

ICANN President and CEO to Leave Office

March 3, 2009

ICANN President and CEO Paul Twomey announced at the 34th International meetings in Mexico City that he would be stepping down at the end of 2009.

“Last year, I told the Board that I did not want to renew my contract as President and CEO for another 3 year term,” said Twomey. “While I am deeply and personally committed to ICANN and its success, I think this is the right time for me to move on to another leadership position in the private or international sectors.”

Twomey has served as the President and CEO of ICANN since 2003. Prior to that, Twomey served as Chairman of ICANN’s Governmental Advisory Committee (GAC).

During Twomey’s tenure with ICANN the organization witnessed tremendous growth and has initiated many new measures to further expansion (new gTLDs and Internationalized TLDs).

Twomey will continue to be involved with ICANN even after relinquishing his position.

“The Board has asked me to stay on after it appoints a successor to have a period of handover with the new appointee. During this transition period I shall be appointed to the new position of Senior President,” said Twomey.

ICANN’s Press Release regarding Paul Twomey’s announcement can be found here.

Paul Twomey’s biography can be found here.

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