Apr 202017

ICANN’s Global Domains Division (GDD) has started organising summits to enable domain industry members who have contracts with ICANN (registries and registrars) to discuss business issues away from the traditional policy-focussed ICANN meetings.

The 2016 summit was held in Amsterdam and drew in over 400 participants (from 49 countries). Much lower than the typical attendance at an ICANN meeting, which can run to over 3,000 people, but not surprising given the narrow focus of these GDD Summits.

The idea is to concentrate on business discussions. How domains are bought and sold, how contracted parties interact with ICANN and its staff, what new trends are emerging for the industry, what major issues the industry is facing…

The next summit is happening from May 9 to 11 in the Spanish capital of Madrid. Over 350 attendees have already registered. 6 ICANN Board members are also planning to attend, plus the ICANN CEO Göran Marby, and a preliminary agenda has now been published.

Mar 032017
dot com

D’après la société en charge de la gestion du .COM, Donald Trump y a fait un vrai tabac sur le dernier trimestre de 2016. Les statistiques d’enregistrement des noms de domaine portant sur le dernier trimestre plein, celles du T4 2016, viennent d’être publiées.

Sur les noms de domaine de langue anglaise enregistrés en .COM d’octobre à décembre 2016, le mot clef le plus souvent demandé est “donald”. Devant un sacré trio : “cannabis”, “marijuana” et “weed” ! Trump est aussi en vedette à l’autre bout de ce top 10. Le 10ème terme le plus enregistré sur cette période est en effet “Donald”.

8,8 millions de .COM et .NET enregistrés au T4 2016

Le .COM totalise 126,9 millions de noms au 31 décembre 2016 et reste donc l’extension la plus utilisée de l’Internet.

Et de loin. Le numéro 2 affiche 21,1 millions de noms enregistrés. Ce score déjà plus qu’honorable est à mettre au crédit de la Chine, qui devance l’archipel de Tokelau. Sur Internet, ce dernier rit de sa petite taille en défiant les géants de ce monde avec une politique de distribution gratuite des noms de domaine se terminant en .TK lui ayant permis de revendiquer 18,7 millions de noms à la fin 2016.

L’Allemagne est au 4ème rang, avec 16,1 millions de noms, devant le .NET (15,3 millions) et le .UK (10,6 millions).

Avec un peu plus de 3 millions de noms, la France est loin derrière. Elle ne figure ni dans ce top 10 couvrant l’intégralité des extensions disponibles sur le Net, ni dans celui des extensions nationales dites “points pays”. Sur ce classement là, les dix premiers sont la Chine, le .TK, l’Allemagne, le .UK, la Russie, la Hollande, le Brésil, le .EU européen, l’Australie et l’Italie.

Sur le .COM (avec le .NET) il y a eu 8,8 millions enregistrements au quatrième trimestre 2016, ce qui met en exergue l’impressionnant volume de noms contenant soit “trump” soit “donald” qui se sont mis à exister sur Internet durant cette période.

Feb 222017
New gTLDs

Let’s be clear: right now, any statements on when (or even if) a follow-up round of new gTLD applications might happen are pure conjecture.

The first round closed on April 12, 2012. Since then, the pressure has been increasing for ICANN to actually live up to the guidebook premise of launching “subsequent gTLD application rounds as quickly as possible” with ” the next application round to begin within one year of the close of the application submission period for the initial round.”

But that deadline is clearly not going to be met.


ICANN no longer expects to complete reviewing the first round – a prerequisite for initiating a follow-up – before some time around 2020. Work has begun on imagining what a second round might look like, but that also seems a long way away from completion.

Reviews and classes

So to try and get a second round out of the gate, imaginations have been working overtime. What if only certain categories of applicants, say cities and brands, were allowed in? The logic being that by restricting applicant types, evaluating them would be easier. And not all the reviews, for all the TLD types applied for in 2012, would need to be completed before any new calls for applications go out.

For cities and geographic terms (dubbed “Geo TLDs”), where the applicant needs to show support from the local government or authorities, the initial gating process could be somewhat easier.

As for brands, there were many non-believers in 2012. Then Amazon, Axa, Barclays, BMW, Canon, Google and many others were revealed as applicants. And now those that didn’t then, certainly want to now. They are lobbying hard to get their shot as quickly as possible.

So when could that be? Those who understand ICANN know the organisation is notoriously slow at getting anything done… unless you do one of a couple of things. Get governments to push, or add symbolism to the mix. ICANN insiders who would see a second round asap are trying door number 2, by suggesting that launching a subsequent application window exactly 7 years after the first, i.e. on January 12, 2019, would satisfy the program’s initial intent for a (relatively) quick follow-up to round 1 whilst being a nice nod to history at the same time.

In the weird alternative logic universe of ICANN, that actually makes sense! Doesn’t make it any more likely to actually happen though…

Feb 162017

Ils étaient deux à se revendiquer du .Africa. D’un côté l’opérateur de l’extension nationale sud-africaine, le .ZA. De l’autre une business woman africaine/américaine.

ZA Central Registry (ZACR) et DotConnectAfrica (DCA) se sont battus devant l’ICANN et les tribunaux. Depuis des années. Empêchant ainsi le .Africa de devenir réalité.

Une guerre civile sans merci, sur fond de polémique en raison de la capacité de la patronne de DCA, Sophia Bekele, a susciter la controverse en multipliant les déclarations publiques fracassantes en même temps qu’elle attaquait en justice.

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Feb 072017

Le 31 janvier 2017, sur son blog, l’organisme en charge de la gouvernance technique de l’Internet prend la parole.

L’ICANN ne dénonce pas directement le décret signé par Donald Trump interdisant l’accès aux US pour les ressortissants d’Iran, Irak, Lybi, Somalie, Soudan, Syrie et du Yémen. Mais l’organisme, qui reste régit par la loi californienne même s’il s’est affranchi de la tutelle du gouvernement américain fin 2016, reconnaît être impacté.

“Nous sommes un organisme international dont le fonctionnement dépend de la participation ouverte, inclusive, transparente et responsable de bénévoles du monde entier,” rappelle l’ICANN. “Nous encourageons tous les gouvernements à soutenir la liberté de participer aux travaux de l’ICANN et d’organismes similaires.”

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Dec 172016

Interested in being involved in Internet Governance? Willing to serve as a volunteer in one of ICANN’s leadership positions?

ICANN oversees the Internet’s domain name and IP address functions and every year, its Nominating Committee selects people for the ICANN Board, the GNSO and ccNSO Councils and the At-Large Advisory Committee.

Want to know more? The 2017 NomCom website is now live. You’ll find information on what the Nominating Committee does, how it does it (including regular report cards on the committee’s work), and how to apply.

Delivering the 2016 NomCom's final report at the Hyderabad ICANN Annual General Meeting

Delivering the 2016 NomCom’s final report at the Hyderabad ICANN Annual General Meeting

Dec 042016

This week, on December 8 and 9, the DNS Entrepreneurship Center (DNS-EC) is travelling to Cotonou, the largest city in the African country of Benin.

Set up following a memorandum of agreement signed between Egypt’s National Telecommunication Regulatory Authority and ICANN in 2014, the DNS-EC strives to develop expertise on the Domain Name System in Africa and the Middle East.

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Nov 122016

On the face of it, the answer is a rather obvious and simple “yes”! The Internet obviously works across borders. Technically, it is a global network servicing its users wherever they may be on the planet.

But it is this very nature — the fact that the Internet is not bound to a specific country or territory — which has more and more people asking themselves whether it can really work across borders. By “work”, they don’t mean function, they mean fit into the layers of national laws and best practices that governed human interactions for years before the Internet came along.

Initiated in 2012 by former ICANN Board member Bertrand de la Chapelle, the Internet & Jurisdiction project strives to stimulate discussion and the development of operational solutions to help enhance transnational cooperation on matters of law, economy, human rights, and cybersecurity.

This article was first published on CircleID. Read the full article here.

Oct 012016

“Today, after months of preparation and implementation of the community’s tasks, ICANN’s contract with NTIA expired. As a result, the coordination and management of the Internet’s unique identifiers is now privatized and in the hands of the volunteer-based multistakeholder community.”

These 2 sentences published today, October 1, 2016, by ICANN Board Chair Steve Crocker, have an air of history-in-the-making about them.

For the first time since it was created in 1998 to oversea the Internet’s naming (domain names and Top Level Domains) and addressing (IP addresses) functions, ICANN no longer has a direct contract with one government. The United States no longer have veto power over the way Top Level Domains such as .SKI (generic) or .EU (country code) are launched on the Internet.

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