comment on closed-generic gTLD applications
i am submitting this comment as an individual, but am a member of NCUC. it represents my views and does not represent the position of NCUC. the community bottom-up policy development that culminated in the AG involved a lot of effort and deliberation and compromise of all those participating and those who's input was rerlayed to the group. the AG cannnot be easily abandoned, nor would it be in the interest of ICANN participation to sweep aside the policy resulting from this long deliberation. but in the discussion, there was understood to be theconcept of .brand generic-closed domains, and some community domains operated in the public interest.
i do not recall any hint of closed domains that would capture generic category words and if those were anticipated by some participants in the discussions, they were relatively quiet about their intentions to later promote this type of domain business model. thus the Board has observed that the AG is silent on this topic, and yet is aware of the controversial result of a large number of closed-generic applications, thus the request for comments on an issue not addressed face-on by the AG. my enthusiasm for supporting generic word categories as logical extension of .com, etc. TLDs is fundamentally dependent on the openness of these extended domains. i also support .brand domains and carefully vetted .community domains. so with reluctance, i oppose the concept of allowing category generic TLDs that are closed, in spite of the expectations of those who have made detailed business plans which assume that they would have only other closed seekers and face auctions to resolve conflicting applications. the world-wide public interest is worthy of careful consideration in approving applications, even at this late date. -ron wickersham