I recently arrived back from South Africa after having attended the 47th annual Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) meeting in Durban. The following is an update and my impressions of developments that occurred that this meeting.
On the opening day of the ICANN conference, the highlight was the signing of the first four registry agreements with new generic top-level domain (gTLD) applicants. As we have known for months, all four signed registry agreements were to be for Internationalized Domain Names (IDNs), and include:
The middle part of ICANN’s week provided updates on the new gTLD program’s status and the development of the Uniform Rapid Suspension System (URS) and the Trademark Clearinghouse, among other topics. However, a significant amount of community focus was on the Government Advisory Committee’s (GAC) advice on certain new gTLDs.
At the Beijing meeting, the GAC has indicated initial objections to a number of new gTLD applications. Many of these objections were finalized and a few applicants decided to withdraw.