A number of applicants for new gTLDs have written to ICANN expressing their âgrave concerns relating to the Community Objection processâ, saying they believe the Expert Panels âdo not have any prior experience with the new gTLD programme or a deep understanding of the Applicant Guidebook (AGB).â
The letter from Shweta Sahjwani (Radix Registry), Reg Levy (Top Level Domain Holdings / Minds & Machines) and Jay Westerdal (Fegistry, LLC) says that as applicants they very carefully considered the definition of âcommunityâ in the AGB before applying under âcommunityâ or âstandardâ applications and that they did not try to âgame the systemâ.
They go on to say they did this in the belief that âICANN and its contracted parties would be responsible for upholding the AGB definitions at every stage of the programme.â
However they are concerned by how the Expert Panel that in evaluating the .architect and .fly applications âdo not even mention the definition of the term âcommunityâ as defined by the AGB, let alone whether the alleged community in question in each Objection is really a community.â
The letter concludes noting âseveral other instances in the Expert Determinations â¦ confirm our assertion that the Expert Panels simply have not adhered to the AGB while making their decisions.â
The letter also asks for ICANN to temporarily suspend decision making until it can âconduct a basic level of training for the actual Expert Panels on the AGB guidelines and their interpretations.â