ICANN Hates Fairness and Predictability? So What's New?

Domain Mondo has watched in amusement as ICANN Insiders and Outsiders have both recently bemoaned the unfairness, and utter unpredictability of ICANN policies and processes--

Exhibit 1: ICANN's New gTLDs program--see the Booking.com case of an unfortunate new gTLD applicant caught up in ICANN and its new gTLD program's policies and processes--just one comment out of many (and this one is by a trademark attorney)--"... the results flabbergasted many people. Somehow it seemed to mutate into a "bad eyesight similarity review," since the only two "positives" were one where "i" gets confused with "l" and one where "rn" gets confused with "m." Meanwhile, singulars were not similar to plurals. So "hotels" is a similar string to "hoteis" but not to "hotel"..."

Exhibit 2: ICANN's UDRP policy--see the case of easyGroup Limited v. Easy Group Holdings Limited, D2014-2128 (WIPO February 19, 2015) wherein a 3-Member Panel split, with the majority denying the complaint and finding reverse domain name hijacking and the dissent finding lack of rights or legitimate interests and abusive registration--
Getting it Wrong: Split Decision for - IP Legal Corner: "The dissent’s view raises anew an old problem that panelists recognized early on about the UDRP, namely that appointment of the wrong Panel could in fact be a roulette wheel. See Time Inc. v. Chip Cooper, D2000-1342 (WIPO February 13, 2001) (“The majority believes that potential users of the UDRP are entitled to some degree of predictability. Counseling one who is considering filing a Complaint should consist of more than, ‘It depends what panelist you draw.’”)" (emphasis added)
That's right, ICANN knew "early on" (UDRP policy was adopted by ICANN in 1999) that a UDRP outcome was more dependent upon the panelist(s) one drew--i.e.,a roulette wheel--than the facts and merits of the case. ICANN apparently loves arbitrary, capricious, and unfair outcomes resulting from ICANN policies and processes, because it has done nothing to correct this in over 15 years! ICANN operates in the public interest? Apparently it doesn't matter to ICANN that an end result is wrong, just as long as ICANN's complex and inherently flawed policies and processes were followed. Form over Substance! should be ICANN's official motto.

Exhibit 3: ICANN's policy allowing "sky is the limit" annual registration renewal fees for New gTLD domain names--official ICANN policy allows new gTLD registries to increase registration and renewal fees on domain name registrants without any caps or limitations--

Surprise! Surprise! How much will it cost you dear new gTLD domain name registrants to renew that new gTLD domain name next year? And the year(s) after that? How about building your online business on a new gTLD domain name will cost you $30,000 per year to renew, 3 years from now? LOL! I guess the joke is on all of you new gTLD domain name registrants--and the Joker is ICANNDomain Mondo warned you--Caveat Emptor!

And Larry Strickling and the NTIA really think ICANN is ready for prime time? Who is being played for a fool?

Domain Mondo archive