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DNSO Names Council Recommends Creation of Top-Level Domains

The Domain Names Supporting Organization of the Internet Corp. for Assigned Names and Numbers late Tuesday unanimously recommended that ICANN's board of directors establish a policy for the introduction of new generic top level domains.

The DNSO made the recommendation after reviewing the report of its Working Group C (new gTLDs), released on March 21, and comments related to the report. Following the review, the Names Council concluded there was consensus for the introduction of new gTLDs in a measured and responsible manner.

The ICANN board will act on the resolution at its next meeting in Yokohama, Japan on July 15-16, 2000.

The resolution stated that implementation of the policy should give due regard to the following:

  • Promoting orderly registration of names during the initial phases;
  • Minimizing the use of gTLDs to carry out infringements of intellectual property rights;
  • Recognizing the need for ensuring user confidence in the technical operation of the new gTLDs and the DNS as a whole and
  • Promoting competition in the domain-name registration business at both the registry and registrar levels.

Given that there is no recent experience in introducing new gTLDs -- the last one was introduced in the 1980's -- DNSO recommended that a limited number be introduced at first and that any future introduction of additional gTLDs be done only after careful evaluation of the initial rollout. In its report, Working Group C advised that the intitial roll-out should be between six and 10 new TLDs followed by an evaluation period.

Working Group C's report indicated that several types of domains should be considered in the initial introduction, including:

  • Fully open top-level domains (similar to .com)
  • Restricted and chartered top-level domains with limited scope (similar to .edu)
  • Non-commercial domains and personal domains.

Finally, the group noted that it had recently received additional principles for the introduction of new gTLDs and would be providing supplemental recommendations to the board in the near future. Specifically, Working Group B's (famous names) formal report will be open for public comment until May 10.

The DNSO is one of three supporting organizations within ICANN that develop and recommend policies concerning the Internet's technical management within their areas of expertise. It deals with policies concerning the domain name system.