This morning in Prague ICANN senior staff provided a briefing to the GNSO Council on the state of play for the rights protection mechanisms (RPMs) required for new gTLDs. Most of those occupying the packed room appeared to find the information imparted to be incomplete, non-illuminating, and somewhat distressing.
As part of its avowed commitment to transparency – a key element in the Affirmation of Commitments signed at the conclusion of direct U.S. oversight -- ICANN maintains a document disclosure procedure similar to the U.S. Freedom of Information Act.
Domain registrant fees are the source of the vast majority of ICANN operating funds, so in a sense registrants are the taxpayers of the ICANN system. To the extent that ICA members own or manage a significant percentage of existing domains we want to make sure that our “tax dollars” are spent wisely, that registrants’ viewpoints are reflected in ICANN decision-making processes, and that registrant rights are duly respected.
The World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) recently issued a detailed press release regarding Uniform Dispute Resolution Policy (UDRP) cases for which it provided arbitration services in 2011 (http://www.wipo.int/pressroom/en/articles/2012/article_0002.html ) and, once again, the number of WIPO filings was up.
ICANN Staff: URS Summits Budget Item is a Placeholder for “Community Discussion” – But Where Was the Community Discussion of Whether URS Should be Reconfigured?
Last week we noted that the draft ICANN FY 2013 Budget contained $175,000 in funding for two “Summits” to be devoted to reconfiguring the Uniform Rapid Suspension (URS) rights protection mechanism for new gTLDs in order to achieve a “lower cost model” (http://internetcommerce.org/URS-Summits).
ICANN Budgets for Two URS Reconfiguration “Summits” to Satisfy Trademark Interest Goal of a “Lower Cost Model”
ICANN has released its Draft FY13 Operating Plan and Budget (http://www.icann.org/en/news/public-comment/op-budget-fy13-01may12-en.htm) and while we haven’t reviewed it in its entirely yet we did notice that it contains two references to the implementation of the new Uniform Rapid Suspension (URS
ICANN has just announced that, starting with the June meeting in Prague, the ICANN Board will no longer meet and cast votes on the final day of its three annual public meetings (http://www.icann.org/en/news/announcements/announcement-30apr12-en.htm).
The best thing about the proposed .Com renewal agreement is what’s not in it – the untested Uniform Rapid Suspension (URS) mechanism, which trademark interests initially portrayed as a narrow supplement to the UDRP yet continue to try to convert into a cut-rate substitute for that increasingly unreliable arbitration process. URS is required to be in place when the first new gTLD is added to the root, which will probably occur in the first part of 2013 (unless we witness further TAS-like delays).