Time to respond to URS complaints reduced to 14 days (from 20). We oppose this change.
Once again, ICANN inexplicably acts against the interests of domain name registrants and reduced the time to respond to URS complaints from 20 days to 14 days (see pages 5 and 7 of the URS draft). We oppose this change, as it denies applicants sufficient time to obtain a lawyer, and also is inconsistent with ensuring that registrants receive even actual notice of a complaint (e.g. if a registrant is on holidays). We proposed that the time to respond be a function of the age of the domain name. This would ensure that complainants bring their complaints as early as possible. For example, the registrant might get 5 more days to respond for every year that the domain name has been registered (so a 10 year old domain name would get 50 more days). This ensures balance. There is a lack of fairness when complainants have unlimited time to prepare complaints, whereas respondents have under 2 weeks to find a lawyer and prepare a defense, if they even receive any actual notice of a complaint. In the typical civil rules of procedure, the time to respond in international legal proceedings is typically greater than 40 days, and also the clock doesn't begin until actual notice has happened (i.e. when the complaint has been served upon the other side). In short, 14 days is simply unacceptable. As a compromise, we propose: 14 days + (5 days) x (AGE OF DOMAIN in years) Thus, for a 5 year old domain name, the time to respond would be 14 + 25 = 39 days. This would ensure that complaints are brought in a *timely* manner (i.e. within the first year). If a domain name has been registered for 5 or 10 years, there is no "urgency" that a domain name needs to be suspended rapidly. If a domain name has only been registered for 1 month, then the registrant would need to respond within 14 days. Of course, we proposed numerous times that all domain names be subject to WHOIS Verification (i.e. mailed PIN codes to physical addresses of registrants) to curb abuse. ICANN ignored this good proposal, which I'm sure would have the strong backing of the Intellectual Property constituencies, as well as have the support of most legitimate domain name registrants. Sincerely, George Kirikos President Leap of Faith Financial Services Inc. http://www.leap.com/