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Microsoft & Yahoo Tells ICANN Not To Allow Google’s Dotless .Search App

Posted on the 14 June 2013 by Worldwide @thedomains

In its eight part comment to ICANN, Microsoft gave plenty of reasons, actually 7 points, why Google should not be allowed to amend its application to run the .Search registry.

Yahoo followed with its own comments also objecting to the application.

Here are Microsoft’s comments:

“Microsoft Corporation (“Microsoft”) objects to ICANN’s preliminary approval of the application change request submitted by Charleston Road Registry Inc., for its .SEARCH application.

Google’s requested amendment does not meet ICANN’s Application Change Request Criteria.

Further, Google’s Amended .SEARCH Application will result in a gTLD registry that threatens the security and stability of the Internet. It will create ambiguity and confusion, and materially adversely impact consumers, public and private enterprises, and providers of critical infrastructure. Finally, contrary to Google’s characterization of it, Google’s proposed amendment does not truly “open” the .search gTLD to third parties. Accordingly, Microsoft requests that ICANN withdraw its preliminary approval of Google’s requested amendment to the .SEARCH Application.

ICANN’s Application Change Request Process requires ICANN to balance seven criteria to determine if an application change should be approved. Google’s requested amendment fails these criteria. ICANN should have denied the amendment request, especially because the amendment contains a new registry service and a significant new functionality – dotless domain – that ICANN’s own Security & Stability Advisory Committee (“SSAC”) recommended be contractually prohibited in new gTLDs because of the threats to security and stability posed by dotless domains.

1. Google did not provide a “reasonable explanation” for the requested amendment.

Google’s application change request for its Amended .SEARCH Application identified three possible explanations for the requested amendment: (a) to “propose a revised registration policy that allows for registration by any search website providing a simple query service”; (b) to “propose a new redirect service at the ‘dotless’ search domain (http://search/)”; and (c) to “provide users with a powerful new tool to make use of the search-related services online” New gTLD App. Change Request Form at 1 (emphasis added).

The true purpose of the amendment, however, is to evade and circumvent criticism of Google’s original .SEARCH Application by the GAC and the search community. The timing of the application change request – during the GAC’s deliberations to provide GAC Advice to the ICANN Board on new gTLD applications and three weeks after two Community Objections were filed against its original .SEARCH Application – make this clear. Such efforts at evasion and circumvention are not reasonable and ICANN should not treat them as reasonable.

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