Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers

What the Ombudsman Can Do for You

How the Ombudsman can help you

This is a page with practical directions as to how the Ombudsman can help you with your problem, and to help you decide if the Ombudsman can help you. The Ombudsman is given some specific powers to look at problems. There are some things which the Ombudsman does not have the power to investigate, but sometimes the Ombudsman can facilitate some resolution, by discussion or mediation.

The ICANN Ombudsman is independent, impartial, and neutral. The Ombudsman's function is to act as an Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) office for the ICANN community who may wish to lodge a complaint about an ICANN staff, board or supporting organization decision, action or inaction. The purpose of the office is to ensure that the members of the ICANN community have been treated fairly. The Ombudsman will act as an impartial officer and will attempt to resolve complaints about unfair treatment by ICANN using ADR techniques. The Ombudsman is not an advocate for you, but will investigate without taking sides in a dispute.

Examples where the Ombudsman can help

This is not meant to be an exhaustive list but just to give some idea of issues which may arise. The ombudsman will quickly advise if the issue requires further investigation, and whether it is within the power of the ombudsman to help.

  • I was at a meeting of my ICANN supporting organisation, and comments were made which were disrespectful and sexist, which I find offensive
  • I have been waiting for a decision about membership of my Regional at Large Organisation (RALO) but there has been a long delay
  • I rang the office of ICANN, but the person I spoke to was rude to me and did not listen to my problem
  • The voting system in my supporting organisation is unfair leading to results which are not representative of the constituents
  • I have been waiting for a decision from ICANN to refund money, but there has been a delay

Examples where the ombudsman cannot help

  • The ICANN Ombudsman does not investigate complaints between domain holders and registrars. The Ombudsman will provide self help information to domain holders and others who are in disputes not relating to ICANN.
  • If you are trying to resolve a dispute concerning a service provided by your registrar
  • If you are trying to resolve a complaint related to Whois data
  • If you have a dispute involving the requested transfer of a domain name from one registrar to another
  • If you need information about what you can do if someone is using your trademark in a domain name
  • If your complaint is about SPAM or Internet Viruses
  • If your complaint concerns an unsolicited renewal and transfer request, or an unauthorized transfer of your domain name

If you know who your registrar is and need to find out how to contact them, or if you want to see if a company is an accredited registrar, you can find that information at: http://www.icann.org/registrar-reports/accredited-list.html

How to make a complaint

Go to the complaint form or send an email to: ombudsman@icann.org

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