10 Mar 2012

New GTLDs, ICANN And Domain Names Disputes Resolutions

If you are having an online presence chances are very good that you may have one or more domain names. Just like physical property, domain names are equivalent to virtual or online property that is a must to have possession these days.

Although the importance of domain name is well understood yet its legal protection in India has not invoked interest among our legislature. Domain name protection in India is still provided under the trademark law of India. Domain names are essential part of commercial activities and we need a separate domain name protection law in India.

The importance of domain names has further increased due to the recent announcement of ICANN to register new generic top level domains (GTLDs). In fact, ICANN’s new generic top level domain names (new GTLDs) registration has begun and is in progress.

Perry4Law and Perry4Law Techno Legal Base (PTLB) recommend that the new GTLD applicants must undertake due diligence before applying for the same. A risks and benefit analysis of ICANN’s new GTLDs registrations must be made by individuals and companies alike.

In particular, the applicants must make a techno legal analysis, new GTLDs due diligence, anticipate possible legal rights objections under ICANN's new GTLD program, etc. The legal issues of new GTLDs application, their registration and subsequent litigations would surface and a sound strategy in this regard can help in minimising the legal risks associated with the same.

Even after the application period for new GTLDs would be over, there is no guarantee that legal and other objections would not be raised. Independent objections and legal rights objections for ICANN’s new GTLDs would follow after the application period ends.

Legal rights objection assistance for new GTLDs by Perry4Law and PTLB may be sought by the applicants of new GTLDs independent of ICANN or any other organisation. Perry4Law and PTLB are not related to ICANN or any other organisation in this regard.

Trademark and brand protection under new GTLDs registration by ICANN must be rigorously pursued by various stakeholders. It is recommended by Perry4Law and PTLB to formulate a good techno legal strategy by the new GTLDs applicants for successful registration of new GTLDs in their names.