Tag Archives: FairWinds Partners

Daily Wrap: Whois Privacy, Domain Suspensions Not a Priority for PIPCU, the Litigious IOC, IPv6 Grows in APEC and Neustar Expands, Again

FairWinds Partners logo“Whois privacy services by cybersquatters can frustrate and sometimes delay the resolution of a domain dispute but it can’t prevent the inevitable,” say FairWinds Partners in a recent blog posting. But they do result in “brand owner[s] having to incur the expense of filing a UDRP or URS complaint.”

City of London Police logoA London police unit, the City of London Police’s Intellectual Property Crime Unit (PIPCU), has decided that suspending pirate domain names is no longer a priority, according to TorrentFreak. The report says that after ICANN ruled that registrars don’t have to suspend domain names without a valid court order, the police have decided to put more emphasis on other enforcement tactics.”

The International Olympic Committee is very protective of its trademarks and litigious when it comes to those it believes to protecting those marks. So now the IOC and the U.S. Olympic Committee have sued a businessman on trademark charges, claiming he’s stockpiled more than 1,000 domain names of potential Olympic host cities and years to raise money, according to Courthhouse News Service.

However Stephen P. Frayne Jr. has “filed a complaint in the District Court for the Northern District of Illinois, averring that he acquired the domain name solely to establish a bona fide noncommercial forum for an ‘open and honest discussion’ about the Olympic Games, the complaint states.”

Use of IPv6 in the Asia Pacific is growing. According to recent stats from APNIC Labs, there are some encouraging signs across the region, with the United States (26.5%), Peru (15.5%), Japan (15.7%), Malaysia (10.2%) and Singapore (9.6%) all among the top 15 economies for IPv6 end-user adoption. In the post on the APNIC blog, it notes that “globally, IPv6 adoption has seen a 100% increase in the last 12 months. Although this only represents 4.9% of total users there is reason to be optimistic about the overall trend.”

Neustar is expanding its wings. In 2015 it has acquired Bombora, the Neustar logoregistry for the .au and .om ccTLDs, and assets owned by Transaction Network Services, to add to, among other acquisitions, .CO Internet in 2014. And just last week it acquired MarketShare Partners, LLC, a fast-growing marketing analytics technology provider to major brands, for $450 million. The purchase price is effectively reduced to approximately $390 million after taking into account tax benefits resulting from the transaction.

Daily Wrap: Community .GAY Applicants Rejected, Again; Aust Govt Objects to .FOOD and ICANN54 Roundups

DOT GAY LLC gTLD logoThe application for the .gay gTLD by community group Dot Gay LLC has once again been rejected because… they aren’t gay enough. But it appears that commercial groups wanting to operate the gTLD will be OK. The bid by Dot Gay was rejected because “its application did not cover a sufficient number of gay people”, an appeal was won and it’s been rejected again a year later.

The result was the same and the reason, Kieren McCarthy writes, was “the evaluation team decided the application did not sufficiently cover a community. But this time the reason was the complete opposite – that it was trying to cover too many gay people.”

It’s a bizarre and tortuous journey for Dot Gay and points to the application system being loaded against community groups and in favour of those with the money and resourced.

The Australian government has got involved in the new gTLD application for .food, being “among those asking ICANN deny a request to make .food a ‘closed generic’ gTLD,” according to Domain Incite.

“Eight people have filed comments opposing Lifestyle Domain’s application for Specification 13 status for its .food registry contract, which would allow the company to keep all .food domains for itself,” the report says.

The ICANN meeting has come and gone, and there have been a few roundups of what happened in recent days.

Don Hollander wrote an article on Universal Acceptance discussions at the 54th meeting held in Dublin for Centr. Universal Acceptance, Hollander writes, is “the idea that all domain names will work equally well in all applications” and he notes it “made material progress during the ICANN54 meeting in Dublin.”

FairWinds Partners, a consultancy and lobby group, published their ICANN 54 Review while APNIC’s Paul Wilson wrote his Reflections on ICANN 54.

RIPE published their review of the meeting, ICANN 54: Addressing the Accountability Question, and Milton Mueller wrote “Transition is a noun, not a verb: Thoughts on the Dublin ICANN meeting” where he noted “the Dublin meeting was not a train wreck. That much we can say. My assessment of ICANN 54 is not, to put it mildly, as chirpy as that of the Internet Society CEO, but it is more objective and nuanced. Insofar as progress on the transition is concerned, the deliberations among the CCWG, the GAC and the ICANN board averted a rupture that would have jeopardized the transition. But it did so primarily by caving in to the board-promulgated fears of creating a membership, and by side-stepping contentious issues. There are still a lot of loose ends.”

The IE Domain Registry (IEDR) has published some research noting that “over a third (37%) of Irish SMEs still do not have a website or any online presence whatsoever.” The research also found “91% of Irish SMEs cannot process sales online and 54% do not have websites optimised for mobile browsing, were outlined this morning at the launch of Ireland’s first ever ‘Internet Day’ at the CHQ Building.”

Domain Name Association Launched To Educate On Domains

The Domain Name Association was launched yesterday (28 October) with the goal of educating internet users, promoting expansion of top level domains promoting the usage of domain names.The founding members serving on an Interim Board include ARI Registry Services, Demand Media, Donuts, FairWinds Partners, GoDaddy, Google, Momentous, United TLD and WhatBox?. DomainsBot Inc., Minds + Machines and RightOfTheDot, LLC are also founding members.”For too long the domain name industry has relied on ICANN to defend our commercial interests, even though this is not ICANN’s responsibility,” Adrian Kinderis, Chair of the Interim Board of the Domain Name Association Goldstein Report last week. “The formation of the Domain Name Association reflects a maturation of our industry in the corporate sphere and presents a united front in the promotion of domain names as the primary tool for users to navigate the internet.””I strongly encourage everyone involved in the industry to join the Domain Name Association and contribute to our collective growth.”More information is in the news release below:New Non-Profit Launched to Support the Growth and Development of the Internet Domain Name Industry [news release]The Domain Name Association seeks to educate Internet users and promote expansion, usage of domain names; and curates educational resource whatdomain.orgAs the Internet faces a historic transformation with hundreds of new domain names coming online, an international nonprofit organization has been created to promote the interests of the domain name industry by advocating the use, adoption, and expansion of domain names as the primary tool for users to navigate the Internet.The Domain Name Association (DNA), launched today by companies active in the Internet sector, will educate Internet users around the world about the benefits of domain names, with a specific focus on the imminent introduction of new Top-Level Domains which will revolutionize the way we navigate the Internet. The DNA will develop educational resources and campaigns to prepare users for these changes and support the success of the new domains.Membership is open to organizations involved in all aspects of managing domain names, including domain name registries, registrars, resellers, and registry service providers. Founding members serving on an Interim Board include ARI Registry Services, Demand Media, Donuts, FairWinds Partners, GoDaddy, Google, Momentous, United TLD, and WhatBox?. DomainsBot Inc., Minds + Machines, and RightOfTheDot, LLC are also Founding members.The DNA aims to play a key role in helping individuals, businesses, and public-benefit organizations understand the benefits and take advantage of the upcoming expansion of Internet domains. It will also promote, advance, and support the common interests of the domain name industry with respect to provisioning, expanded adoption, and use of domain names.”The domain name industry sorely lacks a vocal advocacy body that is prepared to fight for our commercial interests, and this is the gap the Domain Name Association is going to fill as the first-ever domain name industry trade group,” said Adrian Kinderis, Chair of the Interim Board of the DNA.”As such, we are ideally placed to help Internet users learn about the upcoming new Top-Level Domains and to help them navigate the changing Internet landscape. We will also work to build trust, exchange ideas, educate, and raise awareness of domain related issues within the industry, and we invite all stakeholders in the domain name industry to join the DNA and work together in support of our shared objectives.”The DNA’s first priority will be to educate Internet users around the world about new Top-Level Domains. Many Internet users are unaware that these changes are coming and they may be confused when they first arrive. The DNA is already working to develop educational resources and campaigns to prepare end users for these changes and ensure the success of the new domains. An example of the group’s efforts is the informative website whatdomain.org, an educational resource about the new Top-Level Domain program.DNA membership is organized as a multi-tiered structure that accommodates various levels of interest and desire for participation in the work of the DNA. More information is available on the DNA website.Industry participants are invited to join the DNA to collaborate with peers to promote and ensure mutual success through a period of major change. DNA membership will solidify a company’s role as a critical player in the next phase of the growth of the Internet, with the opportunity to influence important industry policy decisions. Members can also leverage the DNA’s marketing and education programs in their own activities, and they will receive exclusive information via newsletters and bulletins, as well as access to research results.About the DNAThe Domain Name Association (the DNA) is a non-profit business association that represents the interests of the domain name industry. It is independent and global in scope, and its membership is open to organizations involved in the provision, support, and sale of domain names, such as domain name registries, registrars, resellers, and registry service providers.Founding members serving on an Interim Board include ARI Registry Services, Demand Media, Donuts, FairWinds Partners, GoDaddy, Google, Momentous, United TLD, and WhatBox?. DomainsBot Inc., Minds + Machines, and RightOfTheDot, LLC are also Founding members.The DNA’s mission is to promote the best interests of the domain name industry by advocating the use, adoption, and expansion of domain names as the primary tool for users to navigate the Internet. More information is available at www.thedna.org.

More Than Half World’s Most Innovative Companies Applied For gTLD

FairWinds Partners logoOver half of the world’s most innovative companies have applied for a gTLD. Using the Boston Consulting Group’s (BCG) Most Innovative Companies survey for 2013, FairWindnds Partners checked out how many of the top 50 had applied for a gTLD.

FairWinds found 28 of the top 50 had applied and 16 had applied for more than one gTLD. And “seven of the top 10 innovative Companies applied for a total of 194 new extensions, including Apple’s .apple, Amazon’s .imdb and Google’s .chrome.”

The “most innovative also invested the most: BCG’s third most innovative company – Google – applied for 101 new TLDs while the seventh most innovative company, Amazon, applied for 76.”

“This isn’t a coincidence,” said Taylor Frank, VP of Strategy and Development at FairWinds Partners on FairWinds’ gTLD Strategy blog. “Tech, search, e-commerce and automotive companies are going to do very well with their new gTLDs, whether they applied for their .BRAND, a .GENERIC, or both.”

Frank went on to explain that these new extensions are fertile ground for new business models and innovative approaches to community engagement, brand protection, human resources, and product development.

“The more interesting question is not whether there’s a relationship between being the most innovative and having applied for a new gTLD but whether companies that didn’t apply for a new gTLD will hold their ranking come next year.”

Nearly Half of First 100 New gTLDs are Backed by Brands: Brand Owners Must Begin Planning gTLD Strategy, Says FairWinds Partners

FairWinds Partners logo[news release] ICANN‘s new gTLD Prioritization Draw held yesterday marks the definitive point of no return that new gTLDs are coming – and brands may be leading the charge, with 47 of the first 100 non-IDN gTLD strings drawn backed by major brands. More importantly, according to FairWinds Partners, the leading domain name strategy consultancy, the Draw results have significant implications for the strategies brand owners use to adapt to new gTLDs.

For the first time, brand owners have a concrete sense of when their competitors will be launching their new gTLDs. “Those brand owners that drew an earlier spot than their competitors should be actively planning ways to gain and benefit from a first-mover advantage. Given that only 4% of average Internet users know what new gTLDs are, brands have a blank slate,” advised Josh Bourne, FairWinds co-founder and Managing Partner. “Research shows that Internet users will be quick to begin using and accepting new gTLDs once they start learning about them, so brands have an unprecedented opportunity to define the marketplace for their entire industry.”

But that doesn’t mean that brand owners who drew a later spot are necessarily at a disadvantage. They can benefit from the lessons learned by other companies and applicants who launch ahead of them. Even companies that draw an early spot have the option to delay launch if they so choose. FairWinds co-founder and Managing Partner Phil Lodico commented, “Brand owners that participated in the Prioritization Draw have a substantial advantage over those that did not when it comes to maintaining control over the timing of their new gTLD launch. Those that opted out of the Draw will not be able to launch their new gTLDs until the second half of 2014, at the earliest,” he explained.

Understanding the order in which new gTLDs will launch gives all brand owners – applicants and non-applicants alike – the information they need to plan their strategies, and more importantly, their budgets for second-level registrations in other new gTLDs. Whether their priority is to defend their brands and trademarks in these new extensions, or if they plan to use domain names in new gTLDs to promote their brands and expand their digital reach into new markets and to new consumers, brand owners now have a much clearer picture of how to proceed with new gTLDs.

“We can’t recommend strongly enough that all brand owners start developing their plans and formalizing their strategies early in the New Year,” stated FairWinds CEO Nao Matsukata. “2013 is going to be the year of new gTLDs and brand owners need to really hit the ground running. New gTLDs will begin launching too quickly for brands to put off making these important decisions.”

With the results of the Prioritization Draw, the last outstanding piece of information impacting the New gTLD Program that has yet to be revealed is the makeup of contention sets. These will determine which new gTLD applicants will have to go to a bidding war for their new gTLDs. ICANN is expected to announce the final contention sets later this month or early in January.

This FairWinds Partners news release was sourced from:

Daily Wrap: ICANN in Toronto and New gTLDs And “Super-Fadi”

Domain Incite has a few stories we need to catch up on as part of our Daily Wrap, mostly relating to new generic Top Level Domains and the ICANN meeting in Toronto last week.

The first Domain Incite story relates to Donuts, the applicant to ICANN for the largest number of gTLD strings (397), who have outlined their preferred method for resolving conflicts for strings where there is more than applicant. “Donuts is backing a private auction model designed and managed by Cramton Associates as its preferred solution for resolving its 158 new gTLD contention sets,” the report notes.

Donuts believe “that private auctions will be faster and cheaper for applicants than the process set out by ICANN as the ‘last resort’ method for resolving contention sets.”

The article concludes “there’s no denying that Donuts has a greater incentive than most to have a consolidated auction. By its own admission, it’s an eight-person operation without the manpower to negotiate 158 contention sets.” So a little bit of self-interest.

Domain Incite also turns its attention to Fadi Chehadé, or “Super-Fadi”, the new ICANN CEO who was attending his first ICANN meeting in the role, “managing to impress pretty much everybody [Domain Incite] spoke to.”

“Now Chehadé has turned his attention to the formative Trademark Clearinghouse and the Registrar Accreditation Agreement talks, promising to bring the force of his personality to bear in both projects,” the report notes.

“I’m coming out of Toronto with two priorities for this year,” he said during an interview with ICANN’s media relations chief, Brad White, last Friday.

“The first one is obviously to get the Trademark Clearinghouse to work as best as possible, for all parties to agree we have a mechanism that can satisfy the interests of the parties.”

“The second one is the RAA,” he said. “Without question I’m going to be inserting myself personally into both these, including the RAA.”

“These are both difficult problems,” Domain Incite notes.

In the third Domain Incite report in our catch-up, “ICANN’s Governmental Advisory Committee has given four new gTLD applicants cause to breath a sigh of relief with its official advice following last week’s meeting in Toronto.”

“The last-minute reprieve comes in the form of a list of specially protected strings matching the names of intergovernmental organisations that is much shorter than previously demanded.”

“Led by a US proposal, the GAC has told ICANN to protect the name of any IGO that qualifies for a .INT domain name.”

Number four is that “ICANN last week formally approved new rules that could allow incumbent registry operators to own registrars that sell domains in their own gTLDs,” meaning that Verisign would be allowed to sell .COM domains directly.

Outside the world of ICANN’s meeting in Toronto, but in the new gTLD arena, Domain Incite reports “Image Online Design, which unsuccessfully applied for the .WEB gTLD all the way back in 2000, has sued ICANN, alleging trademark infringement and breach of contract.”

And in another lawsuit, “alternate root player Name.Space has sued ICANN for trademark infringement and anti-competitive behaviour, saying ‘insiders’ have conspired to keep it out of the new gTLD program.”

Meanwhile in non-Domain Incite news, “governments have been considering their options with regard to intervening against applications for new generic top level domains, which are currently being processed by ICANN,” writes Monika Ermert for Intellectual Property Watch.

In her report, Ermert notes that “in their report published after the end of ICANN meetings last week, governments listed consumer protection, competition issues and the number of defensive registrations a new zone might attract. They also listed specific topics of top-level domains (TLDs, such as .com) about which they have ongoing concerns, including religious terms, names that target regulated sector industries (like finance or health), generic names if applied for exclusive use, and as well ‘intellectual property rights, particularly in relation to strings aimed at the distribution of music, video and other digital material.’”

Also looking at the ICANN meeting in Toronto was Fairwinds Partners who described the (almost) week-long meeting as having a “slight change in atmosphere.”

“For example, senior government officials conducted a high-level meeting in conjunction with an ICANN public meeting for the first time ever today. ICANN’s new President and CEO, Fadi Chehadé, has appointed an array of new staff members and indicated during his remarks at this morning’s welcome ceremony that ICANN is on the precipice of an organisational shift. And hundreds of attendees here in Toronto are participating in an ICANN meeting for the first time.”

Fairwinds notes that “it seems a foregone conclusion that the New gTLD Program, largely due to its sweeping scope and pervasive effects, will change certain aspects of the ICANN system. And while the exact nature and extent of those changes is still not completely clear, we are feeling the first waves of those changes at this meeting here in Toronto.”

Another to look at the ICANN meeting in Toronto was Stéphane Van Gelder, Registry Relations and Strategy Director for NetNames as well as being Chair of the GNSO.

Van Gelder has a list of topics outlining what happened, these being outlining how new gTLD applications will be approved, “ICANN told by EU agency that proposed data verification measures infringe data protection laws,” and the outlining of the myICANN.org website.

Daily Wrap: .PW To Be A “gTLD”, More gTLD Bids Withdrawn, Civil Society Meets At ICANN Toronto And gTLD Confusion

It’s been a while since we’ve had a Daily Wrap, but here we go. Directi is to relaunch .PW, the ccTLD for Palau next week at the ICANN meeting in Toronto with a sunrise period due to start in December, Domain Incite reports. The relaunch will see .PW branded as “professional web”.

Palau is ranked 197th in the world in area out of 251 countries and principalities with 459 square kilometres – twice the size of Washington DC, and 218th in population out of 238 – 21,032 people, according to the CIA World Factbook.

And last week it was revealed two more gTLD applications have bitten the dust with .CIALIS and .CHATR being formally withdrawn. ELi Lilly & Co dropped its bid for .CIALIS and Rogers Communications withdrew its .CHATR application,” according to Domain Incite.

Public interest groups involved in ICANN will gather on 12 October in the leadup to the ICANN meeting in Toronto, Canada in an event called “ICANN & Internet Governance: Security & Freedom in a Connected World” sponsored by the Noncommercial Users Constituency (NCUC), the voice of civil society in ICANN, according to a post by Milton Mueller on the Internet Governance blog. “The policy conference will focus on key ICANN policy issues like the need to promote both cyber-security and human rights in the development of global internet policies.”

“The conference subtitle recognizes our shared twin goals of security and freedom, and questions to what extent must we sacrifice one for the other,” said meeting organizer Robin Gross whose organisation IP Justice is an NCUC member.

“Cyberspace is at a watershed moment. Global civil society, now increasingly recognised as an important stakeholder in cyberspace governance, needs to step up to the challenge,” Ron Deibert, one of the event speakers, said in a release reported on Intellectual Property Watch. “What is required is nothing less than a serious and comprehensive security strategy for cyberspace that addresses the very real threats that plague governments and corporations, addresses national and other security concerns in a forthright manner, while protecting and preserving open networks of information and communication.”

Other speakers include new ICANN CEO Fadi Chehadé, Fiona Alexader from the US Department of Commerce and Wendy Seltzer, founder of the Chilling Effects Clearinghouse.

Panel topics include: Civil Liberties, Security and Law Enforcement; Controversial Top-Level Domain Names, Freedom of Expression and Intellectual Property Rights; The Changing Geo-Political Landscape of Internet Governance: Implications for ICANN; and Bringing Human Rights into ICANN’s Policy Development Process.

Meanwhile on gTLD Strategy, a blog post from Fairwinds Partners, there is a story on public confusion when new gTLDs come into being. The story notes a British electronics story Currys that has on its stories “Currys.digital.” The only applicant for .DIGITAL was Donuts. If successful, “it will be possible for the shop in the picture to go out and register the domain name Currys.Digital – but just because something is possible doesn’t necessarily mean it will happen.”

The article asks readers to “consider a scenario where Currys does not register its eponymous .DIGITAL domain name, but Boots, the well-known, UK-based pharmacy and drug store chain, applied for the .BOOTS gTLD. Imagine you’re a consumer and an average Internet user, walking down this street in London, and you see the sign that displays ‘Currys.Digital.’ Then, a short block later, you see a sign in the window of Boots that reads, ‘Visit us online at our new site: Pharmacy.Boots.’ Further up the road, there is another retailer whose name is SportsDirect.com.”

FairWinds Gives Their Solution To How To Process gTLD Applications

ICANN this week published a roadmap for processing new gTLD applications with their proposed replacement for digital archery method of selecting when applications will be processed, but there are differing views about this, along with several other issues. And FairWinds Partners has now given their solution.FairWinds Partners worked with over 50 companies preparing gTLD applications and applying for their own gTLD and has considered how to deal with a replacement for digital archery. On their gTLD Strategy blog they say they “considered a variety of options: ICANN could simply let the natural delays inherent in the application evaluation process (Contention Sets, Extended Evaluation, etc.) basically “batch” the applications organically. Or, ICANN could release the results of Initial Evaluation on a rolling basis, thus letting applications move toward delegation on a rolling basis. Or, ICANN could prioritize applications for community-based gTLDs and IDNs (new gTLDs in non-Latin characters) above standard applications, of which there are just 116.”But they note that “each of these options raised almost as many issues as they resolved. So after a great deal more thought, and close consideration with 28 clients who participated on a special conference call to discuss the matter, we ultimately arrived at what we believe is an effective but equitable solution for most applicants. We dubbed our process FIFO after the accounting principle: First In, First Out.”Their “FIFO plan consists of a few key elements that ensure greater transparency and fairness:

  • First, all results of Initial Evaluation should be posted at once.
  • Any applications that must proceed to Extended Evaluation or Contention Sets, or must deal with Objections, should do so.
  • All other applications should proceed to the Registry Agreement negotiation phase. As applicants return their signed Agreements, ICANN should process the Agreements and pass applicants on to pre-delegation testing on a FIFO basis.
  • Once applicants have passed all pre-delegation tests, their applications will be inserted into a queue for delegation, again on a FIFO basis.
  • Finally, ICANN should establish a portal that tracks the progress of all applications through the pre-delegation process so that the community may see where each new gTLD stands.”

ICANN’s New TLD Big Reveal On Delay – Could There Eventually Be Over 3000 Applications?

With the original date for the “big reveal” of new Top Level Domain applications passing yesterday and no date announced for when the TLD Application System (TAS) will be back online, ICANN’s CEO has said he envisages having all the technical issues resolved and the programme back on track by the time he hands over to his successor at the end of June.”I’d like to see us obviously get the technical issues resolved, notify applicants, reopen the window and publish the strings before I pass the baton in Prague,” Rod Beckstrom, CEO and President of ICANN, told Domain Incite. “That’s not a commitment at this point in time, it’s an indication as CEO that it’s absolutely my intention to push for a timely resolution of this issue… If we can get things done sooner, then the sooner the better.”While Beckstrom said he was not pleased with the situation, he told Domain Incite that in the grand scheme of things, a delay of a few more weeks was a small price to pay to make sure everything is done properly.”In the context of nine-year program, a delay of between here and Prague of a few months is undesirable, it’s not what we want to have happen, but the quality of this program is more important to everyone involved than the specific date and time. We’re all focused on quality here and not just doing things in a hurry. This program is too important.”Beckstrom also confirmed to Domain Incite that the TAS will be open for five business days to allow applicants to finish their applications, but he could not say when this would happen.ICANN is currently analysing a 500GB log containing a record of every data packet that went into and out of the TAS between January 12 and April 12, to reconstruct every user session and determine who could see what and when, Beckstrom told Domain Incite.There were 1268 registered users of ICANN’s TLD Application System (TAS) at the time when registrations in the system closed in late March.However each user can apply for up to 50 TLD strings indicating there is likely to be many more applications. For example, Verisign recently announced they were involved in over 230 applications for TLDs.The number of applications to date is a closely guarded secret. Most applicants are wary about letting their competitors know they are applying for fear of competing bids or letting other brand owners know of their intentions.In theory, there could be 63,400 TLD applications, but this is not going to happen. However Fairwinds Partners on their GTLD Strategy blog said in late March that on average their clients are applying for 2.72 TLDs apiece. If this applied across all applicants, it would indicate there would be around 3400 TLD applications, far higher than almost anyone anticipated.When we will find out the number of TLD applications though is unknown due to the security glitch that saw the TAS taken offline on 12 April, and while ICANN repeatedly say they are close to getting things back on track, no date has yet been set.Beckstrom told Domain Incite he wants to make sure the programme is back on track before his tenure as CEO expires at the end of June and be able to announce the “big reveal” by the time of the next ICANN meeting in Prague.

Could gTLD Applications Reach 2000?

Today (29 March) is the closing date when applicants have to be registered in ICANN’s online TLD Application System (TAS) and the number of registered users is growing rapidly. The latest figure published by ICANN shows that as of 25 March there were 839 registered users, up from 556 on 23 March and 329 on 19 March.However as ICANN makes clear, this does not necessarily (and will not) represent the total number of applications since each registrant can apply for up to 50 new TLDs.While there will not be 50 applications per registered user, the consultant FairWinds Partners recently said their clients are applying for 2.72 TLDs each. And if their average of 2.72 TLDs per applicant was the average for all applications, then there will be well over 2000 applications.”Some clients are applying for more than 10,” noted FairWinds, “while some are applying for just one. These clients are all, for the most part, large companies with major, well-known brands. Some are applying for only ‘dot brand’ gTLDs that correspond to their major business, product, or service names, while others are pursuing generic or category terms as gTLDs. Some are applying for both. We are by no means saying that more gTLDs are better – at this point, until new gTLDs have become an established feature of the domain name space, we cannot know what the ‘right’ number of new gTLDs for any given business or other applicant to pursue is. For some, one application makes perfect sense, while others will likely benefit from applying for more.”