ICANN January Policy Update

For an in-depth look at current ICANN Policy topics, go to the January Policy Update at: http://www.icann.org/en/topics/policy/update-feb10-en.htm

A summary of latest developments can be found below


Denise Michel, ICANN Vice President of Policy, has accepted the new position of Advisor to the CEO, effective 15 February. David Olive assumes Denise’s former role.


Belize Joins ccNSO

On 8 February, the country code Name Supporting Organization (ccNSO) accepted the membership application of Belize (.bz).

ccNSO Prepares for Members Meeting in Nairobi

The ccNSO will convene on a full agenda of topics in Nairobi, Kenya. Members will share tips on operating and marketing a country code top-level domain (ccTLD), and exchange views on topics such as wildcarding, data escrow, and incident response.


Council Decides to Take On Vertical Integration

The GNSO Council has initiated a policy development process (PDP) on the issue of vertical integration between registrars and registries. A work team is being assembled from the community to explore whether policies should be adopted that allow or restrict vertical integration and cross-ownership between registrars and registries.

New gTLD Program: STI Recommendations on Trademark Protections Go to the Board

The GNSO Council has responded to a Board request with a series of recommendations developed by the Special Trademark Issues (STI) drafting team. The team recommended creating a Trademark Clearinghouse and a Uniform Rapid Suspension Procedure to protect trademarks in new generic Top Level Domains (new gTLDs).

Inter-Registrar Transfer Policy WG Analyzes Complaints, Comments

The Inter-Registrar Transfer Policy (IRTP) aims to provide a straightforward procedure for domain name holders to transfer their names from one ICANN-accredited registrar to another. The GNSO is reviewing and considering revisions to this policy.

Registration Abuse Policies Group Publishes Initial Report

Registries and registrars seem to lack uniform approaches for dealing with domain name registration abuse, and questions persist as to what actions “registration abuse” refers. The GNSO Council has launched a Registration Abuse Policies (RAP) Working Group to examine registration abuse policies.

Analysis Continues on Potential Studies of Whois

Whois is the data repository containing registered domain names, registrant contacts and other critical information. Questions persist concerning the use and misuse of this important public resource. The GNSO Council continues its inquiries into the suitability of Whois as the Internet evolves. Whois has global scale and critical importance, so adjustments to Whois must be handled with great care. Evaluating Whois will take years, but the process has begun.

GNSO Improvements: Work Teams Progress; Council Refines New Procedures

Members of the Generic Names Supporting Organization (GNSO) community are working to implement a comprehensive series of organizational changes designed to improve the effectiveness and accessibility of the organization. The GNSO Improvements fall into five main areas;

Restructuring the GNSO Council;

Revising the GNSO Policy Development Process (PDP);

Adopting a New Working Group Model for Policy Development;

Enhancing Constituencies; and

Improving Communication and Coordination with ICANN Structures.

To understand the GNSO’s new structure and organization, please see the discussion and diagrams on the GNSO Improvements webpage ( http://gnso.icann.org/en/improvements/ ). For the reasons and history motivating the improvements, see the Background page: http://gnso.icann.org/en/improvements/background-en.htm


Adoption of Proposal for Recovered IPv4 Addresses Seems Imminent – in Two Flavors

Regional Internet Registries (RIRs) are discussing a proposed global policy for handling IPv4 address space returned from the RIRs to IANA. According to the proposal, IANA would act as a repository of returned address space and, once the free pool of IANA IPv4 address space has been depleted, allocate such space to the RIRs in smaller blocks than it currently does.

Three of Five RIRs Approve 2011 for Transition to 32-Bit ASN

Regional Internet Registries (RIRs) are discussing a proposed global policy for Autonomous System Numbers (ASNs). The proposal would change the date for a full transition from 16-bit to 32-bit ASNs from the beginning of 2010 to the beginning of 2011, in order to allow more time for necessary upgrades of the systems involved.


Comments Sought on Selecting an At-Large ICANN Board Member

On 5 February, 2010, the At-Large Advisory Committee (ALAC), in collaboration with the At-Large Community, posted its first-ever public consultation by opening a 30 day public comment ( http://www.icann.org/en/public-comment/public-comment-201003-en.htm#at-large-director ) period on a proposal for how At-Large should select a voting member of the ICANN Board.

AFRALO Publishes Outreach Brochure

Members of the At-Large African Regional Organization (AFRALO) worked collaboratively to create a brochure, which they will use for outreach activities and information dissemination.


Issues Active with the SSAC

The Security and Stability Advisory Committee (SSAC) is considering several security related issues, including the Report of the Root Scaling Study Team, display and usage of Internationalized registration data (Whois data), and domain name history.