Phil Corwin Of ICA Appointed To Internet Committee of the International Trademark Association (INTA)
Phil Corwin of the Internet Commerce Association (ICA) has been appointed to the serve on the Internet Committee of the International Trademark Association (INTA) for a two-year term commencing in January 2014
International Trademark Association (INTA) is the largest group of its kind.
Mr. Corwin stated:
“This will allow me to bring the perspective of domain registrants and others into the Committee’s consideration of trademark policy on the Internet Committee for the next two years!”
This year, more than 3,200 members applied to serve on INTA committees so its quite a honor for Mr. Corwin and a great opportunity for domain holder issues to be heard in the largest organization of trademark holders and their lawyers
Internet Committee of INTA oversees some subcommittees including:
Online Use Subcommittee
Domain Disputes, Ownership and Whois Subcommittee
New gTLD Registry Issues Subcommittee
International Domain Name Issues
Current members of the Committee include
Fabricio Vayra Committee Vice Chair
Time Warner Inc
Paul D. McGrady
Winston & Strawn LLP
Hogan Lovells (Paris) LLP
There are 25 total members from around the world.
Its a pretty amazing accomplishment for Phil and a great sounding board for domain holders to get their issues heard among the biggest brands in their world and their counsel.
As part of Mr. Corwin’s appoint he will be required to attend two meetings a year in addition to the ICANN meetings that Mr. Corwin already represents the ICA at each year.
Needless to say your contributions to the ICA are needed more than ever.
If you think the new gTLD’s and rules coming out of the program won’t effect you or your current domain holdings you should read the excellent piece on DirectNavigation.com today on how new gTLD rules, in this case the hundreds of domains that can’t be registered in new gTLD may come block to exist exact matching existing domains including .com domains.
The list includes lots of two and three letter domains.
Congrats to Phil
CADNA: Costs Of Defensive New gTLD Registrations To Be Double The Total Cost Of All .Com Registrations
As pointed out by the Phil Corwin of the Internet Commerce Association (ICA) The Coalition Against Domain Name Abuse (CADNA) has launched another offensive at the new gTLD program teaming up with the Council of Better Business Bureaus (BBB) to launch a month-long “‘Know Your Net’ gTLD public awareness campaign”
“Their goal is to enact amendments to the U.S. Anti-Cybersquatting Consumer Protection Act (ACPA) that would expand the law’s coverage beyond domain registrants by creating secondary liability for domain system intermediaries like registries and registrars, increase statutory damages penalties for all targets, and establish a ‘loser pays’ regime that favors deep-pocket corporate litigants. If such a proposal was enacted it would vastly increase the litigation leverage of trademark owners and tilt the playing field against defendants in a manner that would result in a high probability of domain shutdown without any final verdict from a court. In short, it’s a SOPA-like proposal grounded in trademark rather than copyright.”
CADNA has claimed that defensive registration costs to brand holder will cost $2.4 Billion dollars
“If businesses register as aggressively [as they did at the .XXX adult content TLD] in all of the new ‘open’ gTLDs, they will be forced to spend almost $10 billion….“Domain name registrations in the new gTLDs likely will be lower than they where (sic) in .XXX. But even a quarter of the .XXX number of registrations would cost about $2.4 billion
The ICA counters that CADNA is basically claiming that the total cost of defensive domain name registration will be double the total cost of the cost of owning every .com and .net in the registry.
According to the most recent April 2013 VeriSign Domain Name Industry Brief there were 252 million registered domains at the end of 2012, of which about half (121 million) were in .Com or .Net. The average annual registration fee for a .Com or .Net domain is less than $10 – but let’s go high and assume that the average annual fee for all .com and .net’s are $10, they the total amount spent on all .com and .net registrations is around $1.2 Billion.
How can defensive registrations cost brand holders twice as much money as the total registration cost of the new .com and .net registry combined?
Of course there are a lot of other issues with the CADNA numbers.
To use .XXX as an example which had a retail registration fee of $100 and a had a high degree of defensive registrations due to the nature of the subject matter, we at TheDomains.com would expect only .sucks which is only one of 1,400 or so new gTLD strings to generate the amount of defensive registrations that .XXX saw.…
ICANN Declares Initial Evaluation Of New gTLD’s Over But There Are 29 To Go Including .Search & .ABC
In a press release this afternoon ICANN proudly announced that the “Initial Evaluation (IE) phase of the new generic Top-Level Domains (gTLD) program is concluded.”
“This is an extraordinary landmark which demonstrates the progress in this program,” said Akram Atallah, President of ICANN’s Generic Domains Division. “We are looking forward to the innovations that these new introductions will enable on the Internet.”
“Out of the 1,930 new gTLD applications submitted, a total of 1,745 applications passed Initial Evaluation, 32 have gone into Extended Evaluation, and 121 were withdrawn from the program. ”
The only problem is there are still 29 new gTLD applications showing as still being in Initial Evaluation on ICANN’s website. These 29 applications are not withdrawn, have not passed IE, have no failed and have not been made eligible for extended evaluation.
The fate of those 29 applications is still unknown and there are some “big” applications still in the Initial Evaluation status including Google’s much talked about application for .Search; the American Broadcasting Company’s application for .ABC; and The Better Business Bureau’s application for .bbb; the city of Rome’s application .Roma; the global accounting firm of Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu application for .Deloitte; the only other applicant for .Sex filed by Internet Marketing Solutions Limited, other than ICM Registry’s, the operator of .XXX; Rogers Communications application for .Rogers and another application that has gotten some mainstream press, .Kosher.
Here are the 29 applications that are still in IE:
ICANN issued a Status Report on UDRP Providers and Uniformity of Process, last night and the timing of it makes it look as a direct result of the criticism of Phil Corwin of the Internet Commerce Association (ICA) made public during the ICANN meeting that concluded on Thursday.
First for the report, then some comments will follow:
“”Issues relating to Uniform Domain Name Dispute Resolution Policy (“UDRP”) and uniformity of providers started to arise within ICANN in 2010. Commenters raised concerns regarding how ICANN can and should enforce uniformity among the approved UDRP providers. At that time, ICANN stated that it would undertake a review of its relationship with its UDRP providers, which it did. This memo is the culmination of that effort.
“”There are two documents that are required for universal, uniform operation of the UDRP. The first is the policy itself, at http://www.icann.org/en/dndr/udrp/policy.htm (“Policy”), setting out the scope of relief and the basis for mandatory administrative hearings that may be brought.
The second document set outs the Rules for Uniform Domain Name Dispute Resolution Policy (the “Rules”), at http://www.icann.org/en/dndr/udrp/uniform- rules.htm, which provide the baseline procedural requirements that must be followed in a UDRP proceeding, such as required notice to a respondent, time for filing a response, and standardization of a practice for appointing the administrative panel in every proceeding brought under the UDRP.
Each approved UDRP provider is responsible for maintaining its own set of supplemental rules, defined as “the rules adopted by the Provider administering a proceeding to supplement these Rules.
Supplemental Rules shall not be inconsistent with the Policy or these Rules and shall cover such topics as fees, word and page limits and guidelines, file size and format modalities, the means for communicating with the Provider and the Panel, and the form of cover sheets.” (Defined in the Rules, at http://www.icann.org/dndr/udrp/uniform-rules.htm.)
As part of the approval process, potential providers must provide ICANN with a copy of their proposed supplemental rules, which are reviewed to confirm that there is no conflict with the Rules and the Policy, and also to confirm that the potential provider has an understanding of the policy.
Contracting with UDRP Providers
One of the most common requests that ICANN has received regarding UDRP providers is to implement a contract across providers that will require uniformity in proceedings.
ICANN has carefully considered whether the introduction of contracts is feasible or useful in the scope of UDRP proceedings, and has determined that contracts would be a cumbersome tool to assert to reach the same outcome that exists today.
The Internet Commerce Association (ICA) submitted comments to the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) website, on the current draft statement of Registrants’ Rights and Responsibilities (RRR) calling it “deficient in scope”.
“We prefer the alternate version proposed to ICANN by the Non Commercial Stakeholders Group (NCSG) and propose that a modified version of it be adopted as the final RRR said Phil Corwin in his letter to ICANN
“As a document intended to provide guidance to all registrants, especially those lacking a sophisticated understanding of their rights and responsibilities, it is important that the RRR reflect the input of registrants represented by such entities as the NCSG and the ICA as well as of registrars.”
The ICA strongly supports the concept of a standard statement of RRR that all accredited registrars must provide a link to.
However, the current draft RRR (available at http:1/www.icann. org/en/resources/registrars/raa/proposed-registrant-rights responsibilities-22apr13-en.pdf) is insufficient in scope.
This deficiency perhaps reflects the fact that it was drafted by registrars without input from registrants or entities representing them.
As an RRR starting point, we prefer the proposed draft submitted by ICANN’s NCSG on May 14, 2013 and available at http://forum.icann.org/lists/comments-proposed-raa-22apr13/msg00010.html.
We have modified and added some provisions of that draft- and have also included, for the sake of comprehensive treatment and balance, some important provisions of the current registrar-developed draft RRR.
We would propose that ICANN adopt this modified RRR statement in lieu of the current draft RRR; modifications and additions to the NCSG draft are indicated below
Registrants’ Rights and Responsibilities
Registrants of domain names depend on the DNS to provide stable online location pointers for their speech, association, commercial, and non-commercial activities. Registrants derive rights and responsibilities from applicable law as well as from the web of ICANN-based contracts and relevant policies. As a matter of policy, ICANN should ensure that its contracts and the parties bound by them can support a wide range of lawful and innovative end-user activities and free and open communications.
Registrants shall have the right to:
• Reliable neutral resolution of registered domain names;
• No suspension or termination of registration without due, disclosed process;
• Administration of UDRP disputes and other ICANN-adopted rights protection mechanisms (RPMs) in a uniform and neutral manner by arbitration entities that are effectively overseen by ICANN;
• Privacy in the provision and display of registration data;
·Fair and non-discriminatory treatment from ICANN, Registrars and Registries;
• No censorship of domain use, content, or communications through Registries or
• Timely and secure transfer of registered domain names between Registrars;
• Renewal (or choice not to renew) domain name registrations on clearly disclosed terms.…
3 More new gTLD applications have been withdrawn on the ICANN site.
C.V. TLDcare out of the Netherlands withdrew its two new gTLD applications for .Ltd and .Inc
Prioritization numbers for the two applications were 1,381 and 1,503 respectively
Afilias, also withdrew its application for the .Mail new gTLD which had a prioritization number of 1,724
This marks the second withdrawn application for .Inc but don’t worry there are still 9 more applicants.
This also marks the second new gTLD withdrawn for .Ltd and now there are only 5 applicants remaining.
Likewise for .Mail, this is the second withdrawn application leaving 5 other applicants.
ICANN is now showing a total of 63 withdrawn applications…
This is a guest Post by Bill Sweetman who is General Manager of YummyNames, a service from Tucows.com, a top 5 domain name registrar, that allows marketers, entrepreneurs, and startups to buy premium domain names for their business.
Bill is also a member of the ICA Board:
“”The domain investing industry, as wonderful and exciting as it is, is pretty small compared to other industries and consists of a relatively small number of individuals, companies, and related service providers. It is very easy for our eclectic little group of domain enthusiasts to be outgunned by deep-pocketed interests from other industry groups who don’t know or care about domain investors and have no qualms about crushing our industry. Remember, most people wrongly equate domainers with cybersquatters.
Not to sound alarmist, but many of the *basic* things that you take for granted, such as the right to own lots of domains, park (or lease) a domain, even just re-sell a domain name, are all things that could disappear in the coming years if some of the more extreme ‘anti-domainer’ and ‘anti-commercial’ forces out there get their way. I am not kidding here.
The only organization that is actively monitoring ICANN and various government entities on behalf of domain investors is the ICA. And not just monitoring, either. Phil Corwin is right there, in the trenches so to speak, often the only person speaking up when a policy or rule is proposed that is not in the best interest of domainers as well as everyday domain owners. Phil is a tireless crusader for domain investors and we are all very lucky to have him on our side.
If you make a living buying and selling domain names, and you want to continue to enjoy the unique domainer lifestyle, I strongly encourage you to consider supporting the ICA. No amount is too small, and you can donate right on the ICA Website at http://internetcommerce.org/donate
There is no other, and no better, organization out there fighting for your rights as a domainer. But ICA can’t continue doing so without your support.
Thanks for listening.
General Manager of YummyNames”"
NOTE: Worldwide Media, Inc. which is owns and operates TheDomains.com is Silver Member of the ICA as Well.
You can read domainer Nat Cohen’s Guest Post of Why he supports the ICA on Elliotsblog.com…
The Assistant Secretary Of the United States Department of Commerce Secretary Larry Strickling just issued this statement on the World Conference on International Telecommunications (WCIT) which just wrapped up in Dubai:
“I have just returned from Dubai and the World Conference on International Telecommunications (WCIT), which wrapped up today having failed to reach consensus on a revision of the International Telecommunications Regulations (ITRs). ”
“At last count, the United States and over 50 other nations did not sign. ”
“I wanted to take this opportunity to provide you some perspective on the events of the last two weeks at the conference and to discuss how the United States will move forward from this conference.”
“We went to Dubai with two commitments.”
“First, we were dedicated to the goal of a successful conference. ”
“We were confident we could find common ground with the rest of the world to make any necessary updates to the ITRs within their application to traditional telecommunications services. We also hoped the assembled nations would hold a productive discussion on the need to expand broadband capabilities throughout the world.
“But second, we were just as committed to ensuring that the free and open Internet not be ensnared in International Telecommunication Union (ITU) treaty obligations that could threaten the Internet with top-down government regulation at the expense of the multistakeholder processes that had served so well in encouraging economic growth and wealth creation of the Internet up to now. ”
“This has been the steadfast, bipartisan policy of the United States throughout the Obama Administration. ”
“Indeed, at the start of the conference in Dubai, the House of Representatives unanimously passed a resolution, earlier passed by the Senate by unanimous consent, calling upon the Administration to continue to “promote a global Internet free from government control” and to “preserve and advance the successful multistakeholder model that governs the Internet today.”
“So what happened to cause the failure of the conference? ”
“The International Telecommunication Union had made two important promises in advance of the conference. ”
“First, that it would operate by consensus and second, that Internet issues would not be appropriate for inclusion in the ITRs. As it turned out, the ITU could not deliver on either of these promises. ”
“When around 40 percent of the participating countries do not sign the final documents of the conference, it is obvious that the ITU did not achieve the consensus it had promised.”
“I want to spend a minute on the process followed in Dubai. ”
“I have spoken before about why the ITU is not and cannot be a true multistakeholder organization since only member states have a vote. But the process followed in Dubai was startling as to how even member states were denied a meaningful opportunity to participate. The final document presented on Wednesday as the chairman’s plan was shared with only twenty or so countries the previous day. Through the plenary debate on Wednesday, countries that had not been given that privileged access were constantly being chastised by countries such as upsetting the “careful compromise” reached on Tuesday to which these other countries had not been a party”.…
ICA Tells Dept Of Commerce To Make Verisign Roll Back .Com Prices By $2 To Match .Net & Limit Increases To CPI
In a 16 page letter sent by Phil Corwin the Internet Commerce Association (ICA) to the U.S. Department of Commerce (DOC) and the Department of Justice (DOJ), the ICA urges the DOC & the DOJ not to approve the renewal of the Verisign contract to operate the .com registry unless Verisign rolls back wholesale prices of .com domain names to the same price it charges for .net domain registrations and to limit price increases in the future to the increase in the Consumer Price Index (CPI).
Verisign (VRSN) reported during their earnings call about a month ago, that the contract to mange the Com registry is still under review by the Department of Commerce and Department of Justice.
In its letter, the ICA took a very strong position that the contract should only be renewed if price adjustments are made to the contract in both the base price and the price increases.
The argument is pretty simple.
Verisign operates the .net registry for a wholesale price of $5.86 per domain yet its charging $7.85 to manage the .com registry using the same facilities, staff, equipment and infrastructure.
There is no logical reason Verisign can operate the much smaller .net registry which has less than 15 million registrations for $2 less than the .Com registry which has around 105 Million domain registrations.
The second point is equally direct.
Verisign has a monopoly on the .com and .net registries and operates like a traditional utility company in that you cannot register a .com or a .net domain without Verisign getting paid as you can’t get electricity without paying your local electric company.
The difference is if your electric company wants a rate increase it has to go to the relevant commission that oversees it and show that its costs have increased and profits decreased and get approval for each and every rate increase.
Verisign on the other hand is entitled to a 7% rate increase in every 4 out of 6 years, without a showing of additional cost all the while when the company is operating at a greater than 50% profit margin.
Here is the highlights of letter which makes me proud to be a silver member of the ICA:
As the Department of Commerce (DOC) continues its review of the .com Registry Agreement in consultation with the Department of Justice, it is the view of the ICA that approval of its renewal with VeriSign should be approved as being in the public interest only if:
- The wholesale base price for .com domains is reduced from its present level of $7.85 to at least the same $5.86 price currently in effect for .net domains
- Future increases in the wholesale price of .com domains are limited during the six-year term of the new agreement to the increase in the Consumer Price Index (CPI) unless VeriSign submits additional information that provides sufficient documented justification to the satisfaction DOC that such higher pricing is required for the continued operation of the .com registry in a safe, stable, and secure manner. …