Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers

Proposed 2013 RAA Posted for Comment

Comment / Reply Periods (*)
Comment Open Date: 
7 March 2013
Comment Close Date: 
28 March 2013 - 23:59 UTC
Reply Open Date: 
29 March 2013
Reply Close Date: 
19 April 2013 - 23:59 UTC
Important Information Links
Brief Overview
Originating Organization: 
  • Contracted Party Agreements
Purpose (Brief): 

ICANN is seeking public comments on a Proposed 2013 Registrar Accreditation Agreement (RAA), particularly on areas where ICANN and the Registrar Negotiating Team have not been able to reach agreement in principle. This represents the first time in the nearly 18 months of negotiations that community comment is formally sought on this document.

Current Status: 

ICANN and the Registrar Negotiating Team commenced negotiation on amendments to the RAA in October 2011. While the documents posted today show many areas of agreement, there are differences between the ICANN and Registrar positions are highlighted. In addition, further discussion is still ongoing regarding some of the specifications to the agreement.

Next Steps: 

After review of the comment received, the proposed 2013 RAA will be reviewed to determine if further changes are warranted. In addition, ICANN and the Registrar NT are likely to continue discussions regarding the areas where the specifications remain open. The ultimate goal is to have a 2013 RAA completed and approved in the near future.

Staff Contact: 
Samantha Eisner, Senior Counsel
Detailed Information
Section I: Description, Explanation, and Purpose: 

After nearly 18 months of negotiations, ICANN is posting a new version of the proposed 2013 Registrar Accreditation Agreement (RAA) for public comment.

The Registrar Negotiating Team (NT) has continued to engage in good faith negotiations to understand ICANN's perspective with respect to the outstanding issues, and to share the often divergent positions within the Registrar Stakeholder Group. Recently, additional revisions were proposed by ICANN's Negotiating Team stemming from the call by ICANN's CEO, Fadi Chehadé, to work to improve the image of the domain industry and to protect registrants through a further updated contractual framework. The Registrar NT considered each of these new issues, and worked towards finding solutions where appropriate. The RAA posted today reflects hard-fought concessions on many of key issues raised throughout the negotiations, and highlights issues remaining in order for the final 2013 RAA agreement to be reached.

Throughout the RAA and its Specifications, there are portions where two versions of draft text appear side by side. These highlight areas where ICANN and the Registrars have not been able to reach agreement in principle on an issue, therefore both positions are provided for comment. Unless otherwise noted, the remainder of the document reflects agreements in principle among ICANN and the Registrar NT.

A fuller discussion of the status of negotiations and areas of difference is available in ICANN's RAA Posting Memorandum [PDF, 66 KB]. The Registrar Stakeholder Group's Statement on the Posting of the RAA [PDF, 18 KB] is also available. ICANN is also providing a Discussion Memo on the Board Approved Amendment Process [PDF, 101 KB] for community consideration along with the RAA documents.

Section II: Background: 

The current round of negotiations over the RAA began in October 2011. ICANN and the Registrar Negotiation Team have presented updates to the community at each of ICANN's public meetings since that time. Information on the history of the negotiations, including previously released documentation, is available at the community wiki at This includes the group of documents posted in June 2012, which demonstrated the progress to date in the negotiations.

Section III: Document and Resource Links: 

There are multiple documents for review as part of this posting. The new RAA is anticipated to be a base document with a series of specifications attached. This posting includes all documents that are currently anticipated to be part of the 2013 a. As noted above, a fuller discussion of the status of negotiations and areas of difference is available in ICANN's RAA Posting Memorandum [PDF, 66 KB]. The Registrar Stakeholder Group’s Statement on the Posting of the RAA [PDF, 18 KB] is also available.

The base RAA documents:

The Specifications and Addendums:

For the Consensus and Temporary Policy Specification, the Data Retention Specification, and the Whois Accuracy Program Specification, each is available in annotated format to show where differences remain with the registrars, as well as redlines showing the differences in the documents from the 2012 posting.

For the remaining specifications to the RAA, the versions below are provided as ICANN's latest proposal. The Registrar Negotiation Team is still considering each of these specifications:

Section IV: Additional Information: 

(*) Comments submitted after the posted Close Date/Time are not guaranteed to be considered in any final summary, analysis, reporting, or decision-making that takes place once this period lapses.

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