ICANN Aims For June Launch of New gTLDs

ICANN has announced they believe they will garner support from the internet community and be in a position to launch the new generic Top Level Domains on 20 June at the beginning of their 41st public meeting to be held in Singapore.“We’ve had other timelines before, but not one that the community and the Board feels is so achievable as this one,” said Peter Dengate Thrush, Chairman of the Board of Directors. “Most of the hard issues are on the table or behind us.”Dengate Thrush made the comments in a video interview following ICANN’s 40th public meeting in San Francisco. Thrush joined Rod Beckstrom, President and Chief Executive Officer, in wrapping up the largest ICANN meeting in history. It drew more than 1700 attendees.Thrush also elaborated on a controversial decision by the Board to approve an application to add “.XXX” to the list of top-level Internet domain (TLD) names. The applicant, ICM Internet registry, intends to make the TLD available to providers of adult entertainment.There was opposition to the application from some governments and segments of the adult entertainment industry, but Thrush said the Board decision “shows the strength of the industry self-regulatory model that ICANN is all about.”Asked about the U.S. government’s position, Thrush said, “We understand that the U.S. position inside and outside the Governmental Advisory Committee is that they actually have no position either for or against .xxx.””It affirms how important ICANN is and the entire multi-stakeholder community,” said CEO Rod Beckstrom in characterizing the contentious discussions that framed many of the issues at the San Francisco meeting. “These are very tough decisions and it is understandable that parties would have differing opinions.”

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