News Review 1) Cyber Sovereignty Rising, 2) ICANN Fatally Flawed

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Domain Mondo's weekly internet domain news review (NR 2019-06-16) with analysis and opinion: Features •  1) Cyber Sovereignty Rising, China's Vision of Internet Sovereignty Spreading, 2) ICANN Fatally Flawed? a.Afilias v. ICANN .WEB IRP Update, b. EPDP Meeting June 20 UPDATE3) a.Trademarkia v. LegalZoom, b. CJEU on Geograpnic Terms, c. Kaddish.com, 4) ICYMI, 5) Most Read.

1) Cyber Sovereignty Rising, China's Vision of Internet Sovereignty Spreading

China is offering a new version of the internet. This new vision combines sweeping content curbs with uncompromising data controls. It’s called Cyber Sovereignty and it’s already spreading to other countries around the world. Bloomberg.com video above published June 10, 2019.

Two Slides from Mary Meeker's 2019 Internet Trends Report:
Global Internet Users 3.8B (51% of world population), Growth Slowing: +6% vs. +7% Y/Y. Future growth in internet users will largely come from Asia Pacific, Africa & Middle East.

See also:
  • Google’s Chrome Browser Becomes Web ‘Gatekeeper’--Google has far-reaching control over how the web works, and who gets to create new ways of accessing it--bloomberg.com.
  • $20 Phones Could Bring a Billion People Online: about half of humanity doesn’t have internet access, and a lot of those people are in Africa. Enter a $20 device with smartphone brains and a five-day battery.
  • Taiwan's digital minister on combating disinformation without censorship--cpj.org.
  • Telegram says it faced a massive DDoS attack originating from China coinciding with protests in Hong Kong, where organizers used the app to evade surveillance.

2) ICANN News: ICANN Fatally Flawed?
graphic "ICANN | Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers"
ICANN Articles of Incorporation: "... The Corporation shall operate in a manner consistent with these Articles and its Bylaws for the benefit of the Internet community as a whole, carrying out its activities in conformity with relevant principles of international law and international conventions and applicable local law and through open and transparent processes that enable competition ..."

ICANN Bylaws: "ICANN shall not apply its standards, policies, procedures, or practices inequitably or single out any particular party for disparate treatment unless justified by substantial and reasonable cause, such as the promotion of effective competition."

"ICANN was created through an express transfer of powers and authority from the United States
government. While this express transfer included the powers and authority necessary to oversee
the secure and stable operation of the Internet’s DNS, the transfer did not include the power,
authority, or expertise to act as a competition regulator by challenging or policing transactions
and conduct that could be deemed anticompetitive."--ICANN Board Member and Neustar former employee, Becky Burr, infra, at p. 10, May 31, 2019, in Afilias v. ICANN IRP (emphasis added).

Editor's note: if Becky Burr (a/k/a J. Beckwith Burr) is right, the competition provisions in ICANN's articles and bylaws (see above) are essentially meaningless, and ICANN is fatally flawed and should therefore be replaced by the global internet community forthwith, remembering the competition advice that was given to ICANN (via NTIA) by the U.S. Department of Justice Antitrust Division in 2008, but which ICANN disregarded in favor of its own ill-conceived and corrupt new gTLDs program full of anti-competitive provisions.
"Let’s face it, the Internet is a utility and so are the corporations who control it ... Technology needs to be regulated."--Alan Patricof, longtime innovator and venture capitalist, April 30, 2019
a. .WEB IRP Update: Dueling ICANN Board Members & Dueling Expert Witnesses
Afilias Domains No. 3 Limited, Claimant, v. ICANN, Respondent, Independent Review Process  (IRP), 31 May 2019 filing by ICANN:

ICANN's Response to Claimant's Amended Request for IRP, excerpt, p.25:
 Exhibits to ICANN's Response below (basis for redactions):
Burr statement excerpt (p. 12): "No policy, precedent, or authority permits ICANN, based on competition concerns, to block Verisign from acquiring the rights to operate .WEB or to second-guess the judgment of the DOJ – the ultimate competition regulator in the United States – in determining not to act following its own expert and thorough investigation."
Carlton report excerpts (pp.9-12): "Applicants have collectively spent several hundred million dollars to become the operators of these new gTLDs. From 2013 to 2017, applicants spent a total of $294.6 million in new gTLD application fees, paid another $240.6 million for winning public auctions (including the .WEB auction), and expended many millions more in privately resolved contention sets. While I understand that ICANN does not have precise information about the sums spent in private resolutions, existing information suggests that the number is substantial. For example, one publicly-traded registry operator has disclosed that it has received over $50 million from losing private auctions."(pp.9-10) .... there exists evidence suggesting that an Afilias-operated .WEB is not likely to cause Verisign to reduce its already relatively-low .COM price below the regulated level." (p.12)
See also on DomainMondo.com

b. ICANN EPDP Phase 2
Next EPDP Meeting June 20 (agenda / docs), 14:00 UTC (10am EDT), June 13th notes and action items. June 20th meeting observers' info re: audiocast / phone. Links to the EPDP meetings' recordings and transcripts (when available) are posted on the GNSO calendar.  Other EPDP Links: wiki, mail list, GNSO mail list, worksheets, definitions. CPH comments on Purposes here (pdf).

UPDATE EPDP Meeting #7 20 June 2019: Chat transcriptAudio Recording; Zoom Recording. Does EPDP Phase 2 need a course correction? See excerpt below from Zoom June 20 transcript:

See also ICANN CEO June 18, 2019, Letter (pdf) re: "Planned ICANN org Communications to European Data Protection Board Regarding the Expedited Policy Development Process."

June 13th EPDP chat transcript (pdf) also gives the gist of what's going on:

From the EPDP public mail list:
"... I wanted to offer a thought that I hope will not be received as negative. A lot of the work that our group is doing cannot only be characterized as the community’s policy work, but it is in fact ICANN’s (org) compliance. Looking at the cost of becoming compliant, the easiest way to save money is to use synergies. We have asked in the past whether ICANN has written a record of processing activities, carried out DPIAs, asked for legal advice on related aspects etc. To my knowledge, we have not been provided with any such documentation. To be clear, it would be extremely helpful for our group to be able to review existing documents. Even though if our group might hold different views on certain questions, any existing work products would expedite our work. Maybe there are documents in the making, in which case we could build our workplan around potential delivery dates to be able to benefit from such work products. If there is actually no documentation already, it would be good to get clarity around that, too, and we could try to work so that duplicate efforts of the org and our group can be avoided, i.e. so that the org can benefit best from the legal advice we are seeking. Either way, when looking at where the money shall come from, I think it would be fair not to consider expenditures as the community’s policy making only, but as part of ICANN’s overall compliance activities. I hope this helps."--Thomas Rickert (ISPCP) (emphasis added).

UPDATE: Response from ICANN Org.

What's ahead? EPDP meetings will be at ICANN65 in Marrakech, Morocco, June 25 and June 27.

Also note:
  • Privacy Fix: Search and Destroy Old Email Accounts--an unused email address can be a backdoor to your entire digital life--consumerreports.org.
  • Afnic enhances and simplifies the handling of identity theft complaints--since 2017, Afnic has registered 102 complaints for identity theft by individuals when registering a domain name under the .fr ccTLD.--afnic.fr.

3) Names, Domains & Trademarks
graphic "Names, Domains & Trademarks" ©2017 DomainMondo.com
a. Trademarkia's trademark infringement complaint against LegalZoom: LegalForce Inc., d/b/a Trademarkia.com, alleges LegalZoom bought the domain name LegalZoomTrademarkia.com in 2012 and from 2014 to 2018 used it to direct people to LegalZoom.com.

b. Use of figurative signs and words that evoke a geographical area which is associated with a protected designation of origin may constitute an unlawful evocation of the latter. This was the CJEU’s conclusion in its judgment of 2 May 2019 concerning a legal dispute about the protected designation of origin for Manchego cheese (C-614/17)--limegreenipnews.com.

c. Kaddish.com: not long after Nathan Englander’s latest novel "kaddish.com" was published in March, someone actually developed the domain name kaddish.com offering mourners the same services as described in Englander’s book, and the author, reportedly thrilled, said, "The concrete joy of dreaming something up and as soon as it goes into the world, seeing someone actualize it, was purely joyous to me.” Turns out that the person behind the website kaddish.com, is a 65-year-old Orthodox lawyer from New Jersey, who said he registered the domain name 22 years ago after his father passed away, but it wasn’t until he read Englander’s “terrific” book, that he decided to develop and launch the website. Read more here.

4) ICYMI Internet Domain News 
graphic "ICYMI Internet Domain News" ©2017 DomainMondo.com
Cisco Live 2019: Cyberattacks Emerge Against the Internet Itself--threat intel group Talos discovered a Domain Name System attack ("Sea Turtle") that its director calls ‘incredibly concerning.’

"Mark Zuckerberg is a sociopath, and Facebook has institutionalized sociopathy" says NYU's Scott Galloway. See also Facebook is the 'biggest fraud in history' says Aaron Greenspan who studied at Harvard University with Mark Zuckerberg, in an interview with UK MPs over spread of fake news, basing his claims on his theory that Facebook has billions of fake accounts. See also:  Facebook Settles Class Action re: Inflated Video Viewership Metrics--ad agencies'  lawsuit claimed Facebook misstated video metrics by 150-900%.

The Clock runs down for passage of any (U.S.) federal privacy legislation this year--axios.com.

What Is a DNS Leak? A DNS Leak can compromise your online privacy and security. How to Check, Test & Fix? See this comprehensive guide which explains what DNS leaks are, what causes them, and how to prevent or fix them. Also: ipleak.net.

5) Most Read this past week on DomainMondo.com: 
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-- John Poole, Editor  Domain Mondo 

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