The ongoing saga of the applications for the new gTLDs .CORP, .HOME and .MAIL has been resolved. During its February 4, 2018 meeting, the ICANN Board directed the organisation’s CEO to prevent these new Internet suffixes from proceeding and to refund the applicants.
The strings are considered a potential security risk due to the frequency of their use as domains in private networks. They have been on hold since the end of the 2012 new gTLD application round.
The Board decision answers two major questions for applicants: would they be refunded and would they be given priority in any subsequent round? Answers: yes and no.
Good news as far as the refund goes, with applicants seeing their full $185,000 application fee returned which was by no means a given. “The Board considered a range of options and arrangements resulting from these questions: from a standard refund and no priority, to a full refund and priority,” says ICANN.
But applicants for these strings in the 2012 round will not be given any preferential treatment in any subsequent round. “Regarding priority in a subsequent round, the Board (…) considered that there is currently no indication that the strings .CORP, .HOME, and .MAIL will be able to be delegated at any time in the future.”
“The Board also considered the potential complexity associated with establishing procedures and rules for granting priority and that this may be an issue to be handled via the policy development process and not Board action.”