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Summary/analysis of comments

  • To: <gtldfinalreport-2007@xxxxxxxxx>
  • Subject: Summary/analysis of comments
  • From: "Kieren McCarthy" <kieren.mccarthy@xxxxxxxxx>
  • Date: Fri, 7 Sep 2007 21:59:50 +0100

[Posted by general manager of public participation Kieren McCarthy on behalf
on senior policy officer Liz Williams]



ICANN Generic Names Supporting Organisation


Public Comment Period -- Synopsis


Introduction of New Generic Top-Level Domains



30 August 2007





This is a brief summary of the public comments received in the ICANN public
comment forum that ran between 10 & 30 August 2007.   Commenters were asked
to refer to both Part A and Part B of the GNSO Committee's Final Report and
to submit particular comments on each section of the recommendations.

The synopsis is intended to assist GNSO Councillors with their deliberations
on 6 September 2007.  A full report on the public comments will be included
in the Board Report.






At midday (Brussels) 30 August 2007 there were 65 comments submitted to the
ICANN public comment forum at


The majority of the comments referred to ICANN's technical co-ordination
functions and Recommendations 6 & 20 with at least 26 comments titled "ICANN
should confine itself to technical and operational matters" with the same
text of "ICANN should not try to regulate morality and public order on the
Internet.  But the proposed policy for approving new gTLDs threatens to do
just that.


There is no global consensus on these cultural issues, and applying a
one-size-fits-all policy to censor the global Internet cannot work. Also,
trademark law doesn't match the way Internet domains are used, and the
proposed policy would apply trademark law in ways that are completely
unprecedented in any national law or international treaty.  This is
completely inappropriate, and is likely to be illegal in many cases.

The proposed challenge process allows too much subjective doubt in what
should be a completely objective, transparent and well-defined application


It requires ICANN to judge cases for which it has no established
institutional capacity, and sets up a completely bogus legal jurisdiction
without any answerable political authority. It would also allow wealthier
and more powerful gTLD applicants to hijack the application process,
suppress competition and innovation, and generally establish more firmly
unshakable gatekeeper power in the market for gTLDs.


These problems are too important to let the proposed policy be approved
without fixing them. Please protect freedom of expression and innovation by
removing non-technical and non-operational criteria from all ICANN policies.
Keep the Internet open and nondiscriminatory. Keep the core neutral!"
incorporated into the email. 


There were several other comments submitted with different headings but very
similar text.  The Electronic Frontier Finland submitted comments reflecting
Finland's experience with "morality and public order issues" especially with
respect to offensive words in Finnish.


In addition to comments on Recommendations 6 & 20, other comments addressed
the process generally (for example Dirk Kirchenowski, Chris Ambler, Milton
Mueller and Werner Staub) encouraging ICANN to proceed with an open and
transparent process.


Comments from Cyril Chua, Steve Metalitz and Dan Krimm addressed, in
particular, the issues of rights protection mechanisms and trademark law.


There were several comments which addressed IDN issues, particularly
relating to the requirement to use ICANN accredited registrars (from a
Chinese registrar).  In addition, there were comments, again in the context
of IDN services, about the definition of confusingly similar and the
replication of ASCII TLDs in IDN form (from Guanghao Li).


There were numerous comments by interested linguistic and cultural
communities, signalling their intention to submit applications for top-level


George Kirikos submitted his comments in opposition to the introduction of
more top-level domains.



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