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GAC Responds to Board on Geographic Names

28 May 2009

On 26 May 2009, the GAC submitted a final letter [PDF, 72K] responding to the ICANN Board's concerns about the ability to implement the provisions of article 2 of the GAC Principles regarding new gTLDs, particularly paragraph 2.71. The letter recommends, as a minimum, that the names contained in three internationally recognised lists must be reserved at the second level at no cost to governments of all new gTLDs. However, other issues relating to geographic names at the top level and the potential misuse of the respective names at the second level requires further discussion.

The GAC's letter is in response to the 6 March, 2009 ICANN Board resolution, and subsequent letter from ICANN of 17 March, 2009 seeking GAC members input on possible options to resolve the outstanding implementation issues regarding the protection of geographic names at the second level (http://www.icann.org/en/minutes/resolutions-06mar09.htm#08 and http://www.icann.org/correspondence/twomey-to-karklins-17mar09-en.pdf) [PDF, 245K].

The GAC provided an interim response to this request on 24 April 2009 http://www.icann.org/correspondence/karklins-to-twomey-24apr09.pdf [PDF, 95K].

On 15 May 2009, the GNSO Council provided comments on the proposal outlined in the GAC's letter of 24 April 2009, http://gnso.icann.org/correspondence/gnso-ltr-to-gac.pdf [PDF, 69K].

The Board requested a final report from the GAC by 25 May, 2009 and which will now be published 29 May, 2009. http://www.icann.org/en/announcements/announcement-2-24apr09-en.htm

1 Applicant registries for new gTLDs should pledge to: a) adopt, before the new gTLD is introduced, appropriate procedures for blocking, at no cost and upon demand of governments, public authorities or IGOs, names with national or geographic significance at the second level of any new gTLD; b) ensure procedures to allow governments, public authorities or IGOs to challenge abuses of names with national or geographic significance at the second level of any new gTLD.