Committee Urges ICANN to Delay Expansion of Generic Top-Level Domain Program

December 21, 2011

WASHINGTON, DC - A bipartisan group of House Energy and Commerce Committee members today urged the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) to delay expansion of the generic Top-Level Domain (gTLD) program. The members wrote:

"Last week, the House Energy and Commerce Committee Subcommittee on Communications and Technology held a hearing to examine the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) pending expansion of the generic Top Level Domain (gTLD) program. Although we believe expanding gTLDs is a worthy goal that may lead to increased competition on the Internet, we are very concerned that there is significant uncertainty in this process for businesses, non-profit organizations, and consumers. To that end, we urge you to delay the planned January 12, 2012, date for the acceptance of applications for new gTLDs.

"Many stakeholders are not convinced that ICANN's process has resulted in an acceptable level of protection. A wide coalition of interested groups, including top U.S. and multinational companies and large non-profit organizations, support the call for a delay.

"Given these widespread concerns, a short delay will allow interested parties to work with ICANN and offer changes to alleviate many of them, specifically concerns over law enforcement, cost and transparency that were discussed in recent Congressional hearings."

Click here to view the entire letter.

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