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Concluding the Series of Trademark Clearinghouse Meetings

13 December 2012
By Fadi Chehadé

Today I convened the final informational call to close off the series of stakeholder meetings on implementing the Trademark Clearinghouse. I shared the following updates:

  1. Trademark Clearinghouse Agreements
    1. I am pleased to announce that we have signed an agreement with Deloitte Enterprise Risk Services to be the first provider of validation services for the Trademark Clearinghouse. As promised, we will be posting that agreement shortly. The terms are in line with what I shared in my last blog entry:
      • ICANN retains all intellectual property rights in the Trademark Clearinghouse data. (Note this is as between ICANN and Deloitte. ICANN claims no intellectual property rights with respect to user data.)
      • Deloitte’s validation services are to be non-exclusive. ICANN may add additional validators after a threshold of minimum stability is met.
      • Trademark submission fees are capped at USD 150 per record per year. Discounts are available for bulk & multi-year submissions.
      • IBM will charge Deloitte for database access via an application processing interface (API).
      • ICANN may audit Deloitte’s performance (and revenues/costs) to confirm that the costs and fees for validation services are reasonable.
    2. I am also pleased to announce that we are making continued progress on negotiations with IBM for the provision of database services. This contract is structured around a master agreement, with separate statements of work to provide for the relevant services. We are now working on the first Statement of Work for the database, and expect to conclude this in the next weeks. We expect to negotiate and conclude the second Statement of Work, covering the Sunrise and Trademark Claims services, in January. Here are some highlights based on the current discussions:
      • IBM will maintain the Trademark Clearinghouse Database.
      • Data will be imported to the Database within three hours of receipt from a Validator.
      • IBM will be available 24 x 7 for high severity incidents impacting the operability of the database.
      • ICANN will receive all intellectual property rights necessary for transition to a new database provider.
      • IBM will charge registries and registrars for real-time access to the database during the sunrise and claims periods. The fee structure remains under consideration.
  2. The “Strawman Solution”

    As noted in the last blog posting, the “strawman solution” developed during the stakeholder meetings has been posted for public comment, and also sent to the GNSO Council for their input. I understand that this request is on the Council’s agenda for its 20 December 2012 meeting.

    I noted that the public comment notice has been updated to include the full range of what, together with staff, I determined to be implementation vs. policy. (This included some modifications from the original posting which I entered last week.)

    We will be awaiting the GNSO’s response, as well as considering and analyzing the comments received on the strawman, to help us determine the appropriate next steps.

  3. Additional Updates

    I shared a few additional updates on today’s call. On the Uniform Rapid Suspension (URS) implementation, the good news is that we have received multiple submissions in response to the RFI that are within the target price range, and we will shortly be publishing an announcement on this.

    As promised in Toronto, now that the Trademark Clearinghouse and URS are well on the way to successful implementation, I will focus next on the RAA negotiations. Regrettably, we could not gather enough people to hold the first discussion in December as intended, but we are scheduling this for early in January.

Currently, I do not have plans to hold additional conference calls on this matter, as we are now on a good path and the implementation team will continue to work through the remaining milestones for getting the Trademark Clearinghouse up and running.

I attempted with great care to maintain a delicate balance throughout this effort. I felt sandwiched between my deep respect (and growing understanding) of the GNSO processes, and the need to resolve some pressing matters that were standing in the way of a successful implementation — an implementation that we would all stand and defend with pride in the public eye.

While no collaborative process is perfect, I have done my best to ensure that all voices have been heard and that we are working collectively to arrive at a balanced outcome for the public benefit. I learned a lot from the process that will serve me well in the months and years ahead.

I would like to put on record my thanks to all those who engaged in these issues with me in that spirit, and the tremendous effort and good will that were demonstrated. Now, let’s move forward together. We have much to do as a community!




Fadi Chehadé

Former President & CEO