Domain Names: ICANN Sticks to gTLD Launch Timetable

January 9, 2012

The Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers has made a clear commitment to proceed with the opening of the gTLD window on 12 January. Doubts had been expressed about the level of readiness for such a big change in the domain names structure.

In his latest blog post, ICANN CEO Rod Beckstrom claims that ‘ICANN stands ready to proceed’ although it does not sound like plain sailing. As he recounts a meeting of last Tuesday, concerns about readiness obviously remained: ‘While we noted the ongoing presence of risks that were identified and highlighted to the Board and community in June, and the mitigation steps that have been taken, each executive indicated approval to proceed. As a result, Chief Operating Officer Akram Atallah and Salazar gave me the green light to move forward. On Thursday, we held an information call with the Board of Directors. I informed the Board that we are prepared to move forward and to open the program as planned.’

A ‘package of materials’ is available at which show what work has been completed, as well as target dates for ‘open items that require final resolution’. ICANN states that these issues should be settled before the application window closes on 12 April but that their resolution is not essential before the window opens on 12 January.