New gTLD Program Reviews FAQ

  1. What are the New gTLD Program Reviews?

  2. The New gTLD Program Reviews are a set of interactive activities that are expected to take place with respect to ICANN's New gTLD Program, taking into account the assessments anticipated in the development of the Program.

  3. Why are we reviewing the New gTLD Program?

  4. The Generic Names Supporting Organization (GNSO) policy recommendations that are the foundation of the program provided that ICANN should introduce New gTLDs in rounds, until the scale of demand is clear. Having made significant progress in the 2012 application round, ICANN is undertaking a comprehensive review of the program to assess its performance in meeting its intended objectives. The goals include enhanced competition, consumer choice and consumer trust, increased market differentiation and innovation, additional geographic and service-provider diversity and increased protections.

  5. What is involved in the New gTLD Program Reviews?

  6. The New gTLD Program Reviews consist of a number of reports and studies in several areas related to the New gTLD Program, which will be published for public comment and updated based on the feedback received. Analysis of available Program metrics will also be used to inform the reviews, which will enable establishment of a basis of comparison going forward.

  7. What topics are included in the reviews?

  8. Program Implementation

    The Program Implementation Reviews involve a staff self-assessment of the effectiveness of the implementation of the New gTLD Program processes.

    Root Stability

    The goal of the Root Stability review is to evaluate the effects of the New gTLD Program on the operations of the root zone.

    Rights Protection

    The review of Rights Protection Mechanisms is intended to evaluate the effectiveness of the Trademark Clearinghouse, Uniform Rapid Suspension system, and Post-Delegation Dispute Resolution Procedure in meeting their intended objectives.

    Competition, Consumer Choice and Consumer Trust (CCT)

    As part of its Affirmation of Commitments with the U.S. Department of Commerce, ICANN has committed to conducting a regular review of how the New gTLD Program has impacted competition, consumer choice and consumer trust in the domain name system.

  9. Who is undertaking the New gTLD Program Reviews?

  10. Depending on the review area, dedicated project leaders at ICANN will take each set of issues through consultation with relevant experts, community participants, staff and outside vendors, and lead the process for discussion of proposals and solutions with the community.

  11. How did we get here?

  12. In October 2007, the Generic Names Supporting Organization (GNSO) formally completed its policy development work on new gTLDs and approved a set of 19 policy recommendations. One of the recommendations provided that ICANN should introduce new gTLDs in rounds, until the scale of demand is clear. Thus, ICANN has committed to undertake certain work prior to initiating a subsequent application window for the New gTLD Program.

  13. Where are we now?

  14. ICANN staff is in the process of reviewing the various areas of the New gTLD Program, which is the initial phase that will lead to working with the community to develop and design a subsequent application process. ICANN will publish data and analysis as it becomes available.

  15. How do we anticipate getting to the end?

  16. ICANN is committed to completing all of the work and study related to the New gTLD Program and expects to work collaboratively with the stakeholder community to gather their experiences and input on future rounds as well to keep them informed regarding the specific work required.

    The Supporting Organizations and Advisory Committees will continue their ongoing work according to their individual processes. To ensure that all relevant dependencies and connections are accounted for, there will be continued support for the bottom-up activities that will help inform these steps, as well as close communications and coordination with all involved stakeholders.

  17. What is the role of the Generic Names Supporting Organization (GNSO) in the New gTLD Program Reviews?

  18. The Generic Names Supporting Organization (GNSO) has an effort underway to discuss experiences gained in the current round of new gTLD applications and identify subjects for future policy work, if any, that might lead to changes or adjustments for subsequent application procedures.

  19. What do we intend to do at the end of the New gTLD Program Reviews?

  20. The New gTLD Program Reviews are anticipated to be an on-going process that will inform ICANN staff's work toward the development of future procedures.

  21. How will the reviews required by the Affirmation of Commitments occur?

  22. Per Section 9.3 of the Affirmation of Commitments, there should be an examination of the extent to which the introduction of gTLDs has promoted competition, consumer trust and consumer choice, the effectiveness of the application and evaluation process and the effectiveness of safeguards put in place to mitigate issues.

    The Review Team on Competition, Consumer Trust, and Consumer Choice will be convened under Section 9.3 of the Affirmation of Commitments. The reviews will be performed by volunteer community members and the review team will be constituted and published for public comment, and will include the following (or their designated nominees): the Chair of the GAC, the CEO of ICANN, representatives of the relevant Advisory Committees and Supporting Organizations, and independent experts. Composition of the review team will be agreed jointly by the Chair of the GAC (in consultation with GAC members) and the CEO of ICANN.

    The Generic Names Supporting Organization and the At-Large Advisory Committee (ALAC, responsible for representing the interests of end users) recommended 70 possible metrics [PDF, 352 KB] to contribute to this review. This initial review will incorporate data from a global survey of Internet users and registrants; an economic study exploring pricing and marketing practices in the domain name marketplace; as well as other metrics related to compliance complaints, technical services, abusive behavior and other topics related to the Program.

  23. When will there be another application round for the New gTLD Program?

  24. ICANN is committed to opening a second application window for the New gTLD Program as quickly as possible. The exact timing would be based on experiences gained and changes required after the completion of the current round. At this time, there is no announced date for a subsequent round of New gTLD applications.

  25. What is the timeline for the New gTLD Program Reviews?

  26. Below is an estimated timeline for the currently planned activities.

  27. Will the New gTLD Program Reviews impact the current round?

  28. The New gTLD Program Reviews will not affect the current round.

  29. How do I participate?

  30. If you wish to get involved, please visit the New gTLD Program Reviews landing page.

    Last updated 26 June 2017.