Purpose: ICANN is posting for public comment the proposed agreement for renewal of the 2005 Registry Agreement for .MOBI. This proposal is a result of discussions between ICANN and Afilias Technologies Limited.
Current Status: As per Section 4.2 of the .MOBI Registry Agreement, the .MOBI Registry Agreement shall be renewed upon the expiration of the initial term set forth in Section 4.1 of the agreement. The .MOBI Registry Agreement will expire on 31 March 2017.
Next Steps: After the public comment period has concluded, the proposed agreement will be considered for execution, in light of the summary and analysis of the comments.
Section I: Description, Explanation, and Purpose
ICANN is posting for public comment the proposed agreement for renewal of the 2005 Registry Agreement for .MOBI which was originally set to expire on 19 October 2015. The Registry Agreement for .MOBI was extended to permit additional time for the parties to finalize the proposed terms for renewal. Accordingly, the Registry Agreement for .MOBI will expire on 31 March 2017. The renewal proposal is a result of bilateral discussions between ICANN and Afilias Technologies Limited (the Registry Operator for the .MOBI TLD).
As discussed and agreed to by ICANN and Afilias Technologies Limited, the renewal agreement is based on the approved new gTLD Registry Agreement as updated on 9 January 2014. However, in order to account for the specific nature of the .MOBI TLD, relevant provisions in the 10 July 2005 Sponsored TLD Registry Agreement have been carried over to this renewal agreement.
As a result, the proposed renewal agreement for .MOBI is substantially similar to the terms of the base new gTLD Registry Agreement. Below is a summary of both a) material differences between the proposed renewal agreement for .MOBI and the base new gTLD Registry Agreement, and b) provisions in the proposed .MOBI renewal agreement that are materially different from the way .MOBI currently operates:
- Protection of Legal Rights of Third Parties (Section 2.8 and Specification 7): Processes and procedures for the launch of the TLD and initial registrations will not apply as the .MOBI TLD has been in operation since 2005.
- Continued Operation Instrument (Section 2.12 and Specification 8): This requirement will not apply to the .MOBI TLD as it has been in continuous operation since 2005. As a result, provisions in Section 4.3 (b) and (c) of the new gTLD Registry Agreement (Termination by ICANN) are not applicable to the .MOBI TLD.
- Fees (Section 6): The proposed .MOBI renewal registry agreement includes the same fee schedule new gTLD Registry Operators are subject to. Accordingly, the current registry fixed fee for .MOBI TLD will decline from the minimum level of 12,500 USD to 6,250 USD and also .MOBI TLD will be subject to registry-level transaction fee of 0.25 USD (applicability as explained in Section 6.1 of the base new gTLD Registry Agreement).
- Pass Through Fees related to the Trademark Clearinghouse (Section 6.4): Consistent with the above provision on the protection of legal rights, .MOBI will not be subject to the payment of Trademark Clearinghouse related fees.
- Approved Services (Exhibit A): In addition to the common descriptions of the DNS, Anti-Abuse Services and Whois Contact Lookup, the Approved Services for .MOBI includes a 270-day implementation grace period to allow sufficient time for Afilias Technologies Limited to complete the transition of its technical operations to meet the requirements of the proposed renewal agreement. The Approved Services for .MOBI includes "Bulk Transfer After Partial Portfolio Acquisition (BTAPPA)" which was incorporated to the .MOBI Registry Agreement on 6 May 2014 as Amendment No.3 and also (i) Registry Lock, (ii) Searchable Whois and (iii) Internationalized Doman Names (IDNs).
- Schedule of Reserved Names (Specification 5): The proposed renewal Registry Agreement reflects the current provisions in Amendment 2 of the .MOBI Registry Agreement (dated 14 November 2008) regarding the changes in Appendix 6 (List of Reserved TLD Strings) permitting the registry operator to allocate previously reserved single-character labels at the second level within .MOBI through ICANN-accredited registrars based on its implementation process. Additionally, the registry operator may also release previously reserved two-character names to the extent that the registry operator reaches agreement with the government and country-code manager, or the ISO 3166 maintenance agency. The registry operator may also propose release of these names based on its implementation of measures to avoid confusion with the corresponding country codes.
- Registry Interoperability and Continuity (Section 2.7 and Specification 6): Section 6 of Specification 6 of the new gTLD registry agreement (Name Collision Occurrence Management) will not apply to the .MOBI TLD as it has been in operation since 2005.
- Minimum Requirements for Rights Protection Mechanisms (Specification 7): The proposed .MOBI renewal agreement will not be subject to RPMs set forth in the Trademark Clearinghouse nor to the Registry Restrictions Dispute Resolution Procedure (RRDRP) which was designed specifically for community TLDs under the New gTLD program. However, the proposed .MOBI renewal agreement will be required to implement Uniform Rapid Suspension (URS) and the Trademark Post-Delegation Dispute Resolution Procedure.
- Registry Code of Conduct (Section 2.14 and Specification 9):. MOBI's cross-ownership restrictions were removed via Amendment No. 4 of the .MOBI Registry Agreement (dated 26 June 2014). As such, the registry operator is required to abide by the Code of Conduct. Additionally, the provision relating to the registry operator's use of up to 100 names for the operation and promotion of the TLD has not been included in the proposed renewal Registry Agreement as the .MOBI TLD has been in operation since 2005.
- Public Interest Commitments to replace Appendix S (Specification 11): The existing Registration Restrictions in Appendix S of the .MOBI Registry Agreement are proposed to be removed and replaced with the set of standard public interest commitments applicable to all new gTLDs, with the exception of removal of the provision that requires registry operator to comply with any public commitments set forth in registry operator's application.
- Community Registration Policies (Specification 12): Appendix S in the current .MOBI Registry Agreement is not carried over to the proposed renewal of the .MOBI Registry Agreement in the form of Specification 12 (Community Registration Policies). Therefore, the .MOBI proposed renewal registry agreement will not be categorized as a "Community TLD".
- Misc. Provisions: Various other non-material provisions have been modified, at the request of the registry operator and after negotiation, to align with terms of the previous .MOBI Registry Agreement or to clarify rights previously afforded to .MOBI.
In connection with the renewal of the legacy .MOBI Registry Agreement, the TLD is transitioning to the base New gTLD Registry Agreement. At this time, ICANN and the Registry Operator have agreed to implement the incorporation of terms unique to a legacy TLD, such as .MOBI, through an "Addendum" to the Registry Agreement. The Addendum will amend the terms of the .MOBI Registry Agreement. Where the Addendum states that a provision will have "no force or effect", it means that the identified provision will not be read as part of the .MOBI Registry Agreement. The terms of the Addendum will not be affected by future global amendments under Section 7.6 or 7.7 of the existing new gTLD Registry Agreement, which will enable future global amendments to proceed while preserving the unique terms applicable to the legacy TLD.
Posted for public comment are both clean and "redline" versions of the agreement, and the proposed Addendum to the Registry Agreement as follows:
- Proposed Renewal Registry Agreement [PDF, 867 KB]
- Redline showing changes compared to the approved base New gTLD Agreement [PDF, 854 KB]
- Proposed Addendum to the Registry Agreement [PDF, 299 KB]
Contractual Compliance Review: As part of the renewal process, ICANN conducted a review of contractual compliance under the .MOBI Registry Agreement. Afilias Technologies Limited was found to be in substantial compliance with their contractual requirements for .MOBI.
Section II: Background
ICANN and mTLD Top Level Domain, Ltd. (now known as Afilias Technologies Limited), entered into a Sponsored TLD Registry Agreement on 10 July 2005 for operation of the .MOBI top level domain. Based on this Registry Agreement, the effective date of the agreement is the delegation date of .MOBI TLD, which was 20 October 2005. The Registry Agreement was extended on 19 December 2016 to permit additional time for the parties to finalize the proposed terms for renewal. The current agreement for .MOBI, which will expire on 31 March 2017, may be viewed at: https://www.icann.org/resources/unthemed-pages/mobi-2012-02-25-en
Similarly, in 2015, registry agreements of several "legacy" gTLDs, namely the .JOBS, .TRAVEL, .CAT and .PRO Registry Agreements, were renewed based on the new gTLD Registry Agreement as a result of bilateral negotiations between ICANN and the applicable Registry Operator. These renewed agreements can be viewed at: https://www.icann.org/resources/pages/registries/registries-agreements-en.
Section III: Relevant Resources
- Current .MOBI Registry Agreement and Appendices: https://www.icann.org/resources/unthemed-pages/mobi-2012-02-25-en
- Approved base New gTLD Registry Agreement (as updated on 9 January 2014): http://newgtlds.icann.org/sites/default/files/agreements/agreement-approved-09jan14-en.htm