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INTA Comments on Strategic Plan

  • To: "'strategic-plan-comments@xxxxxxxxx'" <strategic-plan-comments@xxxxxxxxx>
  • Subject: INTA Comments on Strategic Plan
  • From: Michael Heltzer <mheltzer@xxxxxxxx>
  • Date: Wed, 15 Dec 2004 11:58:07 -0500

The International Trademark Association ("INTA") is pleased to have this
chance to address the issues raised by the draft strategic plan recently
published by ICANN.
INTA is a not-for-profit membership association of more than 4,600 trademark
owners and professionals, from more than 180 countries, dedicated to the
support and advancement of trademarks and related intellectual property as
elements of fair and effective national and international commerce.  During
the ongoing international debate on the running of the domain name system,
INTA has served as the voice of trademark owners around the globe, working
to ensure that their trademarks are protected and, more importantly, that
consumers have safe and reliable choices in cyberspace.  INTA is a founding
member of the ICANN Intellectual Property Constituency.
INTA supports the fundamental goals articulated by ICANN in the strategic
plan.  Ensuring the stability and security of the Internet; providing
competition and choice with respect to domain name registration; encouraging
bottom-up policy consensus; and providing for global representation in the
policy development process are each objectives that should underlie ICANN's
activities in the years ahead.
Intellectual property holders such as INTA's members are interested in a
considerable number of the ICANN objectives listed in Figure 4 of the
strategic plan, including some key objectives not attributed by ICANN to
intellectual property holders, such as assisting developing nation Internet
communities with education and technical coordination and ensuring root
server stability and security.
ICANN indicates in the strategic plan a commitment to expansion of the
namespace, pursuant to the mandate in ICANN's memorandum of understanding
with the United States Department of Commerce.  INTA is open to expansion of
the namespace insofar as the introduction of new top-level domain names
occurs in a deliberate and controlled manner.  INTA remains committed to
working with ICANN to guarantee that intellectual property interests receive
serious consideration throughout this process.
ICANN identifies the need for strengthened corporate compliance programs to
monitor and ensure compliance by registries and registrars with their
obligations in ICANN agreements.  INTA considers this to be a significant
issue requiring close attention by ICANN.  Two areas in which corporate
compliance is particularly important are the publication of accurate Whois
data and the transfer of domain names pursuant decisions under the Uniform
Domain-Name Dispute Resolution Policy (UDRP); in both areas there have been
deficiencies to date.  Going forward, ICANN needs to devote more time and
attention toward ensuring that the letter and spirit of its agreements with
registries and registrars are honored.
INTA looks forward to working with ICANN and its constituencies to see that
the broad goals set forth in the strategic plan are met as soon as possible.

Michael Heltzer
External Relations Manager
International Trademark Association

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