ICANN 72 Updates and New Appointments

  • The entirely virtual ICANN 72 wrapped up today. Our General Counsel, Zak Muscovitch took part in the meeting, which in part focussed on the ongoing discussions and debate of what constitutes DNS abuse and ICANN’s “inaction” on implementing policy recommendations. The next ICANN meeting will likely be a hybrid meeting held in Puerto Rico in March of 2022.
  • Very preliminary steps are being taken towards the UDRP Review. ICANN Staff intends to commence an “Issue Report” which ostensibly is intended to set the stage for the eventual UDRP Review.
  • The Transfer Policy Working Group convened during ICANN72, and Zak Muscovitch is a Member representing the Business Constituency. This Working Group convened about four months ago and is scheduled to go on for nearly another two years. One of the issues that the Working Group is beginning to examine, are the Transfer Locks on Domain Names. The ICA previously prepared this helpful Infographic explaining the three types of Transfer Locks and ICA’s position is that domain name registrants need security balanced with portability.
  • Public Comments were submitted to ICANN in connection with the Initial Report on changes to the UDRP to “assist” Intergovernmental Organizations like the UN or World Bank. ICA Director, Jay Chapman has been a longstanding member of the ICANN Working Group examining this issue, for which we are extremely appreciative. The ICA submitted a strong Comment opposing the Initial Report. Jay Chapman and Zak Muscovitch also contributed to the Business Constituency’s Public Comment.

 

Some important appointments have recently been announced.

  • The new President of the Intellectual Property Constituency is Lori Schulman who is the Senior Director, Internet Policy for the International Trademark Association (INTA). We congratulate Lori on her appointment and look forward to continuing to work with her and the IPC on UDRP issues.
  • At ICANN72, Jeff Neuman, an ICA Member, was appointed to two high profile leadership positions. ICANN’s Generic Names Supporting Organization (“GNSO”, or the primary policy making body of ICANN) appointed him its Liaison to the Operational Design Phase (“ODP”) for the implementation of subsequent rounds of new gTLDs. In addition, Jeff was also reappointed to serve a second term as the GNSO’s liaison to the Governmental Advisory Committee (“GAC”), which is the body that has been seeking special protections for International Governmental Organizations in the UDRP. We congratulate Jeff on these two very important appointments.
  • President Biden nominated Alan Davidson, formerly public policy lead for Google and Mozilla’s Vice President of Global Policy, to serve as Director of the National Telecommunications and Information Administration, which is the US government agency which is principally responsible for advising the President on telecommunications and information policy issues, including the Internet and ICANN. We congratulate Mr. Davidson on his nomination and wish him well on the important work ahead.