Archive for June, 2011

New TLD registry service providers are not created equal

Monday, June 27th, 2011

Adrian Kinderis, CEO of AusRegistry International, explains why choosing a registry services partner is the most important decision applicants will make.

By Adrian Kinderis

The ICANN Singapore meeting last week was all about certainty. The official approval of the new Top-Level Domain program and the delivery of an application timeline by the ICANN Board has provided the certainty we have all been eagerly waiting for.

What I can also be certain about is that potential applicants are now desperately trying to finalise their new Top-Level Domain strategies. To those applicants, I have one very important message:

Choosing a domain name registry services partner for your new Top-Level Domain is the most important decision you will make from here on in.

As such, I think it is also important for potential applicants to understand that not all registry services providers are created equal. There are several key criteria for differentiation that can help potential applicants decipher all the spin and make an informed decision.

Below is my summary of the criteria I believe are critical for your choice in registry services partner.

1) Experience – Your chosen partner must have long-term experience in developing, growing and operating a current, high volume namespace. In this game, experience counts for everything.

2) Financial Security – Financial security ensures long term viability of your provider. This means that your registry services partner will be around for as long as your TLD needs them to be.

3) Flexibility – Your solution must be built for the specific requirements of your new TLD. Flexibility from your registry services partner will ensure you aren’t restricted by technical capability.

4) Focus – Are new TLDs a primary focus of the business? They should be…

5) Diverse Expertise – Navigating the TLD minefield is no easy task. To ensure success, you’ll need a combination of dedicated industry consultants, knowledgeable technical resources and sales & marketing experts to meet ICANN’s stringent requirements. Great registry services require an equal balance of brain power and technology.

6) Commitment – Ask prospective partners how much of their own time has been invested understanding the intricate details of the Applicant Guidebook and ICANN’s processes. Have they been an advocate and influencer of the program since its inception? Are they committed to the success of this revolutionary program?

7) Price – Extremely low per domain pricing structures may seem like a good idea in theory, however  you must question the ability for that entity to manage a registry well and, importantly, support your ongoing business long-term. If your partner is hamstrung because they have over committed on pricing, you may experience some challenges long-term.

What you are looking for is a service provider that can positively cover off all these points at a consistently high level. What you want to avoid is a provider that may excel at one point to the detriment of another.

There is only six months until the 12 January 2012 application window opens and the time to act is now. I’ve provided you with all the information you need to make the right decisions about your new Top-Level Domain. There is just one more piece of information I forgot to include: info@ausregistry.com.

Drop my team a line one day to see how we stack up.

The Internet community says thank you to ICANN for new TLDs

Wednesday, June 22nd, 2011

By Krista Papac

After more than six years of consultation and negotiation regarding the New Top-Level Domain Program, the ICANN Board this week approved the program to the pleasure of many within the Internet community.

For this, we say thank you to ICANN on a job well done!

The New Top-Level Domain (TLD) Program has been controversial at times and has fuelled many passionate debates within the Internet community. However, it is important to remember that the implementation of new TLDs is written into ICANN’s founding mandate. It is also important to appreciate the level of research, planning, consultation, discussion and compromise that has gone into getting to this point.

The ICANN community needs to understand that a change as big as new TLDs requires some degree of ‘a leap of faith’. Nothing can ever be 100 per cent guaranteed and I can’t promise you that the new Top-Level Domain program is perfect. But what we can be comforted by is the fact that the years of consultation, discussion and compromise that has gone into this process means the leap is more a small step – a carefully calculated step.

What I can guarantee is that ICANN will continue to work extremely hard to listen to any concerns and take all appropriate feedback from now until the launch of the program, and after. This is based on the phenomenal amount of work ICANN has put into getting to this point.

A learning of this entire process has been the fundamental necessity of ‘not pleasing all of the people, all of the time’. The multi-stakeholder model, by definition, is just that. The only possible result with multiple stakeholders, who have a multitude of viewpoints and concerns, is ‘not pleasing all of the people, all of the time’. The focus must be on achieving a quality result with the understanding that you can never make everyone happy.

What cannot be denied is the extraordinary level of work the ICANN Community, Board, staff and the GAC has put into trying to achieve the best possible outcome. All these stakeholders have done a tremendous job and deserve due recognition.

Thank you ICANN

Say ‘Yes to new Top-Level Domains’ at ICANN Singapore

Tuesday, June 14th, 2011

The time for new Top-Level Domains is now! Read the open letter to the ICANN Board and sign the petition calling for the approval of the program here: http://www.petitions24.com/newtlds Show your support and say #YesToNewTLDs

By Krista Papac

There is less than one week to go until the much anticipated ICANN Singapore meeting where the global Internet community expects the ICANN Board to approve the New gTLD Program and finalise plans for launch.

The world is on the precipice of the most compelling opportunity for innovation the Internet has seen since its creation.

However, the fate of new Top-Level Domains (TLDs) now rests with the 16 voting members which make up the ICANN Board.

On Monday 20 June at 11:00am Singapore local time, the ICANN Board will hold a special session to evaluate the current status of the New gTLD Program and consider the approval of the final Applicant Guidebook, which if passed, will signal the start of the Program.

The global Internet community collectively urges the voting ICANN Board members to say ‘Yes to New Top-Level Domains’ in Singapore.

As such, an open letter to the ICANN Board has been posted along with a petition calling for the approval of the New gTLD Program.

The letter and petition can be signed here:  http://www.petitions24.com/newtlds

We encourage you to read the open letter and sign the petition to show your support for new TLDs. The letter urges the ICANN Board to approve the New gTLD Program and simultaneously begin the global communications period at its 20 June 2011 meeting.

ICANN is on the cusp of an historic decision to fulfill its founding mandate to introduce choice and competition into the Internet naming system, and thereby make it truly accessible to all Internet users, and for those to come.

ICANN has no principled course of action except to vote to approve the New gTLD Program; to require the immediate start of the communications period to create greater awareness about the program; and to announce it will begin accepting applications for new TLDs later this year.

I’m confident the New gTLD Program will be approved in Singapore. As I have said before, the extraordinary level of consultation and negotiation that has gone into producing the current version of the Applicant Guidebook is evidence that the model works and that we will be kicking off the new TLD program later this year.

It’s now time for ICANN to say ‘Yes’ to new Top-Level Domains.

Please join the discussion and add your views using the following Twitter hashtag: #YesToNewTLDs  

Krista Papac is based in California at AusRegistry International’s US office. She provides advice on all domain name industry policy matters as AusRegistry International’s Chief Strategy Officer.