Antony Van Couvering image

Closed gTLD: Van Couvering Discusses The Issues

Antony Van Couvering imageThe debate over closed generic Top Level Domains is ongoing, and Antony Van Couvering of Minds + Machines has entered the debate with a posting on the company blog.

Van Couvering writes the issue divides those that are normally united in their opinions on the new gTLDs. The issue was the focus of the Non-Commercial Constituency of ICANN who sponsored a presentation of different views on closed generics at the recent ICANN 47 in Durban. The presentation was “as usual, … the most informative and buncombe-free of the meeting.” So the issue got Van Couvering “thinking about what these principled arguers were really disagreeing about. It’s worth delving into.”

“Although they have a common label, the proposed closed generic TLDs are not all the same. Some will work just like brand TLDs, where second-level names will be issued but Internet users will have no ability to use them except to click them, or type them in. Others envisage what amounts to a rental of a name, where a user has exclusive use of a name but enjoys it not with the protections that come with being a registrant, but according to whatever terms the registry owner decides to impose as a condition of use.

“The question now in front of the ICANN Board is: should these uses be allowed?”

To read Van Couvering’s article and his views on closed gTLDs, go to