When I saw the Dec. 12 editorial “What’s the .rush?” I had to ask, “What .rush?”
The program of the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) to open the Internet to new top-level domain names (TLDs) has been anything but rushed. It took more than six years of thoughtful discussion, debate and study involving governments and intellectual property experts from around the globe. About 60 technical papers and independent reports, plus analysis of 2,400 comments, informed seven versions of carefully crafted rules that will govern the award of a new TLD.
The introduction will be measured. No new TLD from this program will appear on the Internet until 2013. The application period opening next month will introduce a rigorous evaluation period.
The editorial repeated unsubstantiated claims that the new program will necessitate extensive defensive registrations and may lead to increased security risks. These claims ignore the significant protections built into the program for trademark holders and consumers that will serve to create a more secure Internet environment than the current one.
A trademark clearinghouse will enable brand protection in all new TLDs with just one registration. “Uniform Rapid Suspension” will provide a quick, inexpensive way to take down infringing domain names. Other protections include criminal background checks and rejection of applicants with a history of abuse or cybersquatting. These and other measures mean that the new domain space will be even more secure than the current space.
Rod Beckstrom, Marina del Ray, Calif.
The writer is president and chief executive of the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers.