Archive for the ‘Conferences’ Category


Why Accountability Matters at ICANN

Posted August 7th, 2014

The ICANN circus rolled into London in June. Over 3,000 delegates signed up for a seven day festival of all things domain related held in the less than glamorous setting of the Hilton Metropol on the Edgware Road (known to Londoners as Little Beirut). First on the bill was the Commonwealth Internet Governance Forum which focussed on “investments, partnerships and security”. Next came a High Level Government Meeting attended by ministers from 77 countries and apparatchiks from 11 IGOs. The future of internet governance was the main topic of debate. By the time the ICANN meeting started, delegates from within the domain industry, including a strong representation of brand owners including at least a dozen MARQUES members, were exhausted by talk of the impact of Edward Snowden and the digital divide and turned to matters they were more accustomed to such as the launch of the new gTLDs.

The hottest topic to emerge was ICANN’s accountability. As a result of its efforts to develop a process for the transition of the IANA stewardship from the US National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) to the global multi-stakeholder community, the spotlight has been thrown on ICANN itself. Can this not-for-profit corporation incorporated in California be entrusted to police itself if given responsibility for the IANA function of adding strings to the world root? The community lined up at the microphone in the Public Forum on the last day of the meeting to voice concerns. To the amazement of everyone, including 20 rather startled Board Members arranged in a horseshoe at the front of the packed assembly room, all seven constituencies that make up ICANN’s Generic Names Supporting Organisation (GNSO) which creates policy, spoke with one voice. In an unprecedented development they called unanimously for the creation of an “independent accountability mechanism that provides meaningful review and adequate redress for those harmed by ICANN action or inaction in contravention of an agreed upon compact with the community”. Although ICANN, currently, has a number of redress mechanisms these are widely seen as ineffective, non-transparent, time consuming and expensive.

Why is this important? ICANN operates through bottom-up consensus. The views of four main stakeholder groups – registry operators, registrars, non-commercial interests and commercial interests – are weighed against each other as policy is created. Generally everyone is pleased or disappointed in equal measure. However, in recent months the ICANN staff under the leadership of President and CEO Fadi Chehade has blurred the line between implementation and policy. Issues which don’t belong inside ICANN have been allowed to surface – for example whether the .wine and .vin new gTLD applications should proceed without additional safeguards for wine producers. When this topic emerged in London, we were treated to the Belgium government representative calling the Chair of the Government Advisory Committee (GAC) a liar, the Spanish government demanding “a change not only of the GAC but of ICANN itself” and European Commission declaring it will “not at all hesitate to take legal actions”.

Brand owners need ICANN to rise above governmental politics. ICANN must be transparent and accountable if it is to fulfil its stewardship role for the internet. We need a stable and secure internet addressing system, where rights protection and the rule of law prevail. The next 12 months are critical. When the ICANN community gathers again in Los Angeles in October 2014 there may be more to report on the replacement directory services for whois that are being mooted or the success of the URS rapid suspension scheme but for the time being, all eyes are on governance.


 Nick Wood

Nick is Managing Director of accredited registrar Com Laude.


Posted in Accountability, Conferences, Events, gTLDS, ICANN by  


ICANN 47 in Durban, South Africa, 14-18 July

Posted May 20th, 2013


ICANN 47 | 14-18 July 2013

ICANN has opened links for hotel booking and conference registration for its upcoming 47th Public Meeting to be held in Durban, South Africa from 14-18 July 2013. The meeting site will be the International Convention Centre.

ICANN holds three public meetings each calendar year in different regions of the globe. Usually comprised of more than 200 different sessions, these week-long meetings are the focal point for individuals and representatives of the various ICANN stakeholder groups to introduce and discuss issues related to ICANN policy. Participants may attend in person or remotely. Meetings are open to everyone and registration is free.

More Information



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Ken Taylor Among Expert Panelists at DOMAINfest 2012

Posted February 5th, 2012

Marksmen CEO, Ken Taylor, joined domain name valuation experts on the Thursday morning presentation at DOMAINfest 2012 in Santa Monica, CA.

Ken joined moderator Lisa Box (, Paul Nicks (Go Daddy) and Liesbeth Mac-de Boer (Sedo) in providing advice on setting domain prices, as well as buying and selling strategies.

The group was followed by keynote speaker Biz Stone, Twitter Co-Founder.

See more at Domain Name Journal

Posted in Conferences, Domain Names, Domain Sales and Auctions, Events by  


DomainFest Announces Twitter Co-Founder Biz Stone as 2012 Keynote Speaker

Posted November 11th, 2011

DomainFest 2012 registrations are open. The conference which will be held at the Fairmont Miramar Hotel in Santa Monica, California form January 31 – February 2 features Twitter co-founder Biz Stone as its February 2, keynote speaker.

According to the DomainFest website: “During this 60 minute fireside chat, Biz will share his thoughts on Twitter’s future and the evolving world of social media. For example, how will Twitter compete with Facebook, LinkedIn and other social media options for user traffic and advertiser spend?

Biz will also discuss how he sees user needs changing over time with respect to online and mobile social media. In addition, he’ll speak about the changing needs of advertisers with respect to using social media channels to reach targeted users. Will there be new business models to service those changing user and advertiser needs? Whose business model will win?”

Click HERE to read more or HERE to register for DomainFest 2012.

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“Inside Frank Schilling’s $1.65M .XXX Purchase”

Posted October 19th, 2011

As reported on DomainNameWire: “Within twenty minutes during this year’s DOMAINfest conference Frank Schilling agreed to pay $1.65 million for a collection of .xxx domain names — before .xxx was even approved.

Schilling retold the tale today in a TRAFFIC session alongside ICM Registry CEO Stuart Lawley.

During the DOMAINfest event in Santa Monica Schilling started discussing a purchase with Lawley. The next day the two met up and started discussing names. Within twenty minutes Schilling had handpicked a set of domains for a total purchase price of $1.65 million.”

Click HERE to read more.

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Posted in Conferences, Domain Sales and Auctions, domaining, T.R.A.F.F.I.C. by  


T.R.A.F.F.I.C. Conference, Fort Lauderdale 2011 Happening Now

Posted October 17th, 2011

T.R.A.F.F.I.C. is underway at the Ritz Carlton in Fort Lauderdale, Florida.

Click HERE for the full schedule.

Posted in Conferences, T.R.A.F.F.I.C. by  


“5 Questions To Be Answered at Next Week’s TRAFFIC Conference”

Posted October 14th, 2011

As posted to “This year TRAFFIC will host just one conference, which kicks off Sunday in Fort Lauderdale.

Last year there was a TRAFFIC conference just about every other month. Combined with other domain conferences it was simply too much. Having just one TRAFFIC this year means a greater concentration of domainers and a bigger focus on business.

Here are five questions to be answered next week in Fort Lauderdale.”

Click HERE to read more.

Posted in Conferences, T.R.A.F.F.I.C. by  


Preliminary Schedule for ICANN Dakar Posted

Posted October 6th, 2011

Click HERE for the schedule for ICANN Dakar.

Posted in Conferences, ICANN by  


Pre-Dakar ICANN Policy Update Webinar Invitation

Posted September 21st, 2011

As posted to “Whether you plan to participate in the upcoming ICANN meeting in Dakar remotely or in person, you’re invited to a quick reminder of the background and current status of each major policy issue currently under discussion in ICANN.

The ICANN Policy Staff will provide a briefing on Thursday 13 October at 12.00 UTC and Thursday 13 October at 19.00 UTC, summarizing policy issues across the different ICANN Supporting Organizations, namely the Generic Names Supporting Organization (GNSO), Country Code Names Supporting Organization (ccNSO) and Address Supporting Organization (ASO).”

Click HERE to read more.

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Drinking and Dining at the IPO Conference in Downtown Los Angeles

Posted September 11th, 2011

Need a quiet place to meet or relax while attending the IPO meeting in Los Angeles this week?  You’re in luck. Downtown  has some of the best restaurants and lounges in L.A.

  • Take a short walk to the Moroccan themed Hotel Figueroa and take advantage of the beautiful Los Angeles weather at their outdoor patio bar.


  • Grab lunch or dinner on 700 South Grand street at Bottega Louie, one of the best restaurants in Los Angeles.


  • Travel back in time to 118 East 6th street to Varnish, a revival speakeasy located in Coles (one of the oldest restaurants in Los Angeles) for handcrafted artesian cocktails.


Posted in Conference City Guides, Conferences by