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Discussion Group on new gTLD Subsequent Rounds

Quite a mouthful that one is.

I have recently joined the GNSO‘s (Generic names supporting organization) Discussion Group on New gTLD Subsequent Rounds (DGNGSR). It is a large group, lots of members and lots people who will just be mailing list observers. Observers are welcome.

This is the first formal GNSO discussion group I know of. It was initiated by the GNSO to start collecting issues that should be dealt with before there is another round. I don’t think any of us know yet what a discussion group does other than discussion, and report back to the GNSO about the discussions. Staff is going to collect the issues and we are going to fill out templates about the issues. These will be input to whatever Policy Development Process (PDP) the GNSO may initiate in the future to establish the policies for these subsequent rounds.

My first contribution of issues to the groups discussion were:

  • We, those of us at ICANN, did a terrible job of outreach to and inclusion of developing economies in the current round and there must be remediation.
  • We did a terrible job of support for communities in the current round and there must be remediation.
  • We now have seen emergent categories of gTLD have been well established, e.g. brand tld, city tlds, community tlds, exclusive tld, public service related tlds &c.  We need to develop different application procedures per type. And if we are doing rounds, perhaps different rounds for each type.
  • We must avoid reusing many of the processes that we are currently defined as they are confusing and they do not meet the first principle of the original new gTLD recommendations – predictability.
  • There should not be another general round but rather specific focused rounds.  For example the remedial rounds should happen before anything else.  And there perhaps other focused round for cities or for brands.  Beyond that, I think we should be heading toward a rolling application process, or perhaps rounds of a day to avoid digital archery effects (i.e.. the process by which the applicant with the most technical prowess get there first in a first come first serve situation)
  • When there is name contention, the contenders should have the opportunity to negotiate among themselves to take different related tlds: my example being if 3 applicants apply for .bear, one can have .grizzly, one can have .panda and one can have .babybear.  This could replace much of the pain that we are seeing in a situation where approximately a third of the applicants still in processing are in contention processing of one sort or another.

As the discussion develops and as I know more, I will write more.

Incidentally, At-Large, the users group at ICANN,  also has a group talking about this, and I am participating in that group too. But I just joined last week, so do not know much, other then they seem to care about issues dealing with developing economies and communities too.   I will report on that group’s activity here as well.

May seem a bit ironic and painful to already be talking about the next round while the dotgay community waits on pins and needles for the results of the Community Priority Evaluation for dotgay, but that is the way it goes in policy development. If the community wants to be ready when it is time for the next round and we want that round to be supportive of community needs, we need to start working on it now.


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