Sunday, March 15, 2009

Domain name dilemmas

ICANN is planning to start allowing new domain names. Beyond,,, or, under the new plan there could be effectively dot.anything. Unlimited possibilities could mean unlimited registrations for existing trademark owners. Our politicians may now have to keep track of even more than the usual range of and names; there could now be, rodger.cuzner, rodgercuzner.ottawa, rodgercuzner.canada, or and any range of possible registrations to lose track of.

ICANN is currently consulting with intellectual property experts on policies that might protect at least the trademark holders from this difficulty. Some groups are concerned that the interests of trademark holders are being considered above those of other interests, such as those of the Non-Commercial Users Constituency (NCUC).

WIPO's recent comments on the ICANN issue are here. As well, according to IP-Watch, WIPO's report on domain name disputes is due next week. The disputes may soon multiply.

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