ICANN—New Generic Top Level Domain Program and brand protection
Produced in partnership with Emily Taylor of Oxford Information Labs
ICANN—New Generic Top Level Domain Program and brand protection

The following IP guidance note Produced in partnership with Emily Taylor of Oxford Information Labs provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • ICANN—New Generic Top Level Domain Program and brand protection
  • An introduction to ICANN
  • Uniform Rapid Suspension—enforcing rights against domain name applicants
  • The Trademark Clearinghouse
  • Donuts' Domains Protected Marks List (DPML)
  • Enforcing rights against gTLD registries—Post-Delegation, and Public Interest Commitment Dispute Resolution Procedure
  • How to mitigate risks of trade mark infringement and protect brand

This Practice Note provides an introduction to Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN), and looks at options for brand protection and the protection of domain and trade mark owners rights. It covers:

  1. An introduction to ICANN

  2. Uniform Rapid Suspension — enforcing rights against domain name applicants

  3. The Trademark Clearinghouse

  4. Donuts’ Domains Protected Marks List (DPML)

  5. Enforcing rights against gTLD registries—Post-Delegation, and Public Interest Commitment Dispute Resolution Procedure

  6. How to mitigate risks of trade mark infringement and protect brand

An introduction to ICANN

The Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) oversees the domain name system which historically had around 20 generic top-level domains (gTLD) such as .com, .biz and .net.

Following the launch of ICANN's New Generic Top Level Domain Name Program, the first of more than 1,200 new gTLDs were launched from late 2013.

The new set of gTLDs included .xyz, .top, .loan and .club, as well as some famous brand names, eg .bmw and .hotmail. New gTLDs are available to the public (eg company.inc). Consequently, the choice of domain name endings increased by more than 1,200, for example, 'amazon' could be registered as amazon.shop, amazon.books, amazon.music and so on.

So far, while the uptake of individual new gTLDs has not been spectacular, as a whole they are growing fast—more than 24 million new gTLDs were registered between April