This week, the International Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers isholding its 48th public meeting in Buenos Aires, Argentina. Among those present are representatives of the many companies that have applied to own the hundreds of new generic top-level domains (similar to .com or .org) that ICANN is authorizing. For many years, ICANN was cautious about creating new ones. There are currently a total of 22, including .biz, .name, and .info, as well as the various country top-level domains like .us, .fr, and .uk.
But creating new top level domains is a lucrative operation, and ICANN seems to have gotten greedy. While there are compelling arguments for creating some new gTLDs—as generic top-level domains are often abbreviated—particularly in non-Latin alphabets, it is clear that ICANN and related bodies can generate plenty of revenue from a massive expansion.
The current first wave of creations will take the number of gTLDs from 22 to more than 1,400. Anyone with the money to file—it costs $185,000 just to apply—and follow through on an application could propose a gTLD. The cost of the process was behind the significant opposition to the scheme, particularly from brand owners who are now pressured to apply not only for their own brand as a gTLD (.chase, .omega, .qvc, for example), but may now be compelled to purchase new gTLDs in their area of business to protect their existing trademarks. (For example, Nike may feel the need to purchase the domain name nike.shoes, if only to prevent another firm from doing so.) (more…)
Earlier this week, Thomas Bach, the newly elected president of the International Olympic Committee, was in New York for the approval by the U.N. General Assembly of the resolution declaring an Olympic truce.
It’s a very fuzzy paragraph, but apparently discrimination is fine for athletes, but not for volunteers.