US Throws Spanner Into New Domain Name Plan

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Objections by the US Government has seen ICANN the global body that controls website addresses delay plans that would have seen hundreds of new top level domains released to compete with .com which is primarily a US domain. The US Government claimed that they have not had time to examine the economic implications of the move.The Financial Times said that the delay by Icann will give at least a temporary reprieve for owners of valuable brands, who fear that they will have to register many more domain names that echo their trademarks to prevent opportunistic “squatters” from registering them first or spend money on legal claims to oust them after the fact.

The new domain names at issue are known as generic top level domains, as opposed to those dedicated to countries, such as .au for Australia or .uk for the UK and .cn for China.

An arm of the US Commerce Department, which contracted with Icann for the internet oversight role before the web agency became independent, wrote to Icann last week that the “requisite economic analysis remains, at best, incomplete”. The letter cited Icann’s written pledges, as it ended the contract with the US, for thorough and transparent decision-making.

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