01 March 2013
About Clarifying Questions (CQs)
Why have I received CQs?
You received CQs because the evaluation panel(s) did not have sufficient information to award a passing score. CQs are issued once the evaluation panels have completed an initial evaluation of your application and have found that additional information is needed before a passing score can be given.
Do I have to answer the CQs that I received?
Yes, you must answer the CQs that you received or you will risk failing Initial Evaluation.
How do I know if I received a CQ?
When a CQ is issued, the TLD Application System (TAS) sends an email notification to the primary contact for the application. When you get this notification, log into TAS and you will see task(s) listed in the Task bar of your TAS Application Dashboard. You should read and accept all tasks related to CQs.
How do I prepare for CQs?
ICANN has provided information to help you prepare for CQs in the form of Applicant Advisories. To see a list of Advisories, go to http://newgtlds.icann.org/en/applicants/advisories.
Timing and Deadlines
When is the deadline to submit answers to CQs?
Applicants have 4 weeks to respond to CQs. The due dates for each panel's CQs are displayed on the TAS Application Dashboard. Please note that all times are in UTC and use the 12-hour convention. We recommend that all applicants submit CQ responses well in advance of the CQ deadline. We suggest that you allow time to verify your submitted CQ responses before the end of the CQ response window.
Are extensions available?
No. All applicants have 4 weeks to respond to CQs. Based on applicants' input from the CQ pilot, the CQ response window was extended to 4 weeks from the 2 weeks provided in the Applicant Guidebook. This 4-week response window cannot be extended. This is to ensure fairness to all applicants and to enable ICANN to process and post Initial Evaluation results according to the schedule communicated at the ICANN Toronto meeting.
Will I receive all CQs for an application at the same time?
Not necessarily. While all CQs for each panel are issued at the same time, it is possible that you may receive CQs from one panel one week, and then CQs from another panel another week.
The prioritization number for my application is 14XX. ICANN issued CQs for other applications with prioritization numbers in the 1400s this week. If my application did not receive any, does that mean that no CQs were issued for my application?
Not necessarily. Although ICANN makes all efforts to release CQs by prioritization number, there are instances where CQs for a particular application may be delayed. In most cases, a delay in the issuance of CQs will not impact the scheduled posting of Initial Evaluation results.
Will I receive reminders to respond to CQs?
Yes. TAS sends system reminders 14, 7, and 2 days before the CQ response due date. These reminders are sent to the primary contact of the application.
Viewing Clarifying Questions
How do I see my CQs?
Log into TAS, navigate to the TAS Application Dashboard, and click on the CQ task(s) to view your CQs.
Why do I have more than one task pending in my application?
You will have a task for each evaluation panel's CQs. If you have CQs from the Financial and Registry Services panels, you will see 2 tasks on your TAS Application Dashboard: one for the Financial CQs and one for the Registry Services CQs. You should read and accept all tasks related to CQs.
If I do not understand a CQ, can I ask for more information?
Direct communication with the evaluation panels is not permitted. In addition, as evaluations are performed and CQs are written by the evaluation panels, the Customer Service Center will not be able to answer specific questions regarding the CQs. Please answer the CQs to the best of your ability. The CQs were written to be as specific as possible regarding the information that the evaluation panels require in order to award a passing score.
Who can I ask if I have a question?
If you have questions about the CQ process or technical difficulties, you can submit questions to New gTLD Customer Service via the CSC portal at <https://gtldapp.icann.org/vpn/index.html>. Please note that Customer Service cannot answer specific questions about the CQs. Do not submit your questions via TAS; only responses to the CQs should be submitted in TAS.
Responding to Clarifying Questions
How do I submit answers to CQs?
All answers to CQs should be submitted in TAS via the appropriate task. Do not submit your answers to the Customer Service Center or via a change request.
Is there a character limit for each answer?
Text responses are limited to 10,000 bytes. We understand that some responses may require additional space. If this is the case, responses can be provided as attachments.
What happens if I submit a change request after CQs are issued?
CQs are issued when the evaluation panels have completed an initial evaluation of your application and determined that there is not sufficient information to award a passing score. Any changes that you wish to make to an application after CQs have been issued may result in a re-evaluation of the application and delays in the release of evaluation results. Please see section 1.2.7 of the Applicant Guidebook for more information on notices of changes to application information.
Do I need to take into account the proposed changes to the New gTLD Registry Agreement when responding to CQs?
Applicants are only required to address the specific issues raised in the CQs.
How do I see the answers I have submitted?
Submitted answers are displayed in the TAS Application Dashboard under View Clarification Questions and Responses 1-3 business day after they are submitted.
Submitting Supplemental Documents
How do I provide supplemental documents?
You can provide supplemental documents as attachments to the CQ response in TAS. Refer to Knowledge Base (KB) Article "TAS Attachments" for more information on acceptable file formats <https://crm-gtld.icann.org/portal-icann/index.php?module=KBDocuments&action=index>.
My bank requires that the existing LOC be cancelled before a new one can be issued. What is the process to do this?
If you need to have an existing LOC cancelled so that a new one can be issued, please contact the CSC and provide the bank's instructions to release the LOC. ICANN will comply with reasonable and appropriate bank procedures.
What is the process to request a signature from ICANN if an amendment to an existing LOC requires ICANN's signature?
ICANN has posted a process for requesting ICANN's signature on an amendment to an LOC at <http://newgtlds.icann.org/en/applicants/customer-service/loc-signature-requests>. Please refer to this process when submitting LOC amendments.
If I initiate the process to obtain a new or revised LOC within the 4-week CQ response window, but cannot complete the process within that time period, will ICANN extend the deadline?
No. The 4-week CQ response window cannot be extended. The evaluators will complete their evaluations based on the information available at the end of the 4-week CQ response window.
What happens if I submit the revised LOC after the 4-week CQ response window?
When the 4-week CQ response window expires, the task to respond to CQs will no longer be available on the TAS Application Dashboard. You will have to submit the revised LOC to ICANN via a change request. Please note that all change requests are subject to ICANN's approval per the process at <http://newgtlds.icann.org/en/applicants/customer-service/change-requests>. Additionally, change requests submitted after CQs have been issued may result in a re-evaluation of the application and delays in the release of evaluation results. Please see Section 1.2.7 of the Applicant Guidebook for more information on notices of changes to application information.
I uploaded an attachment, but I cannot see it in TAS. How can I determine whether it was uploaded correctly?
You can view attachments under View Application Attachments in the TAS Application Dashboard. It will take 1 to 3 days for you to be able to view your attachments in TAS.
Is there a limit to the number of attachments I can submit?
Please submit no more than 5 attachments per CQ. Each attachment can be no larger than 5 MB.