Icann the net address regulator, has launched a database to allow businesses to register their brands, ahead of the release of a raft of new domain names.
It is hoped the Trade Mark Clearing House (TMCH) will mitigate concerns about cyber-squatting and trademark infringement. Nearly 2,000 new suffixes, known as generic top-level domains (gTLD), will be introduced later this year.
Businesses fear that new addresses will compromise their brands. Suffixes such as .bet, .web. .news will become available from May as alternatives to the well-known .com and .org.
Icann’s (Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers) TMCH will offer companies priority registration for domain names that match their brands during what is known as the “sunrise” period before the names are offered to the general public.
Jonathan Robinson, a consultant on the project said:
Once this period of 30 days is over, names will be available for anyone, but the TMCH will notify brands when anyone registers a domain that matches their trademarks. “So, for example, if someone applies for the suffix Apple, Apple will be able to see what the website is selling – whether it is a local orchard or someone selling fake Apple computers,
New top-level domain names present a land of opportunity, but there are also threats. Prior to this there has been no universal protection available to brand owners, This goes a long way to mitigating the threat,” he added.
Firms wanting to add their trademarks to the TMCH will have to pay a fee of between $95 (£62) and $150 (£98) per year per trademark record.
THE TMCH will be operated by Deloitte.
Mr Robinson expects hundreds of thousands of registrations in coming months.
An international body set up by more than 50 of the world’s governments is overseeing these objections. The Government Advisory Committee will decide in April whether any of the suffixes warrant formal complaints.
[pressrelease]INITIAL EVALUATION RESULTS RELEASED FOR FIRST SET OF APPLICATIONS
Today marks a major milestone in the New gTLD Program: Initial Evaluation (IE) results for the first set of new gTLD applications have been released to applicants and the general public.
This achievement is the result of many years of policy development and implementation work to bring diversity, competition, and innovation to the Domain Name System. Applicants, along with the greater ICANN community have dedicated countless hours toward reaching this goal. This is not only an important and exciting moment in the New gTLD Program but also in the continuing evolution of the Internet.
To view Initial Evaluation results for applications with priority numbers 1 through 30, go to the Current Application Status page of the new gTLD microsite. Results are posted under the IE Results column. Clicking on the result will take you to the Initial Evaluation report for that application.
There are three possible outcomes of Initial Evaluation: Pass, Eligible for Extended Evaluation, or Ineligible for Further Review.
Pass – The evaluation panels determined that the application is consistent with the requirements in the Applicant Guidebook and can advance to the next phase of the Program.
Eligible for Extended Evaluation – The Financial, Technical/Operational, Registry Services, or Geographic Names evaluation panels determined that the application did not provide sufficient information to award a passing score. The application is eligible for extended evaluation.
Ineligible for Further Review – The DNS Stability, String Similarity, Background Screening, and/or Geographic Names evaluation panels determined that the application did not meet the relevant criteria in the Applicant Guidebook, and the application is ineligible for further review.
For some applications Initial Evaluation results were not yet available for one or more possible reasons such as: pending change requests, clarifying questions, or follow-up with applicants regarding missing information. The results for these applications will be published as soon as the relevant processes are completed.
As communicated previously, ICANN is releasing Initial Evaluation results in priority order, in increments of 30 per week, with plans to increase to 100 per week. ICANN anticipates having Initial Evaluation results for all applications published by the end of August 2013.
Applications that pass Initial Evaluation (and that do not face any objections or string contention) will be eligible to proceed to contracting, with execution of the Registry Agreement as early as 23 April 2013.
Visit the New gTLD microsite to stay up-to-date on the latest Initial Evaluation releases and news about the Program.[/pressrelease]