October 24, 2008
Intellectual Property, Internet & E-Commerce Alerts

ICANN Begins Process of Expanding Top Level Domain Names
by Cyrus Wadia

The Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) released draft policy documents yesterday regarding the potential expansion of generic top-level domain names (gTLD).  There are currently just 21 generic top-level domain names (e.g., .com, .net, .org, .info), and the policy documents indicate both that ICANN will likely expand this number upon request by interested parties, and allows a short period (45 days) for public comment on the new proposed gTLD strings guidebook, ending December 8, 2008.  These documents are being issued in advance of ICANN's Cairo public meeting in November.  ICANN explains: "Promoting competition and choice is one of the principles upon which ICANN was founded. In a world with 1.5 billion Internet users (and growing), diversity, choice and innovation are key.  The Internet has supported huge increases in choice, innovation and the competition of ideas, and expanding new gTLDs is an opportunity for more."
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