ICANN Leaders Say Internet Community Will Support June Launch of New Generic Top Level Domains

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CEO and Board Chair Wrap-up Historic San Francisco Meeting

Peter Dengate Thrush, Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN), said a June 20 launch date for expansion the Internet’s generic top level domains, beyond the familiar ones, such as .com, .net and .edu, will receive broad backing from the Internet community.

“We’ve had other timelines before, but not one that the community and the Board feels is so achievable as this one,” said Thrush. “Most of the hard issues are on the table or behind us.”

He made the comments in a video interview following ICANN’s 40th public meeting in San Francisco. Thrush joined Rod Beckstrom, President and Chief Executive Officer, in wrapping up the largest ICANN meeting in history. It drew more than 1700 attendees.

Thrush also elaborated on a controversial decision by the Board to approve an application to add “.xxx” to the list of top-level Internet domain (TLD) names. The applicant, ICM Internet registry, intends to make the TLD available to providers of adult entertainment.

There was opposition to the application from some governments and segments of the adult entertainment industry, but Thrush said the Board decision “shows the strength of the industry self-regulatory model that ICANN is all about.”

Asked about the U.S. government’s position, Thrush said, “We understand that the U.S. position inside and outside the Governmental Advisory Committee is that they actually have no position either for or against .xxx.”

“It affirms how important ICANN is and the entire multi-stakeholder community,” said CEO Rod Beckstrom in characterizing the contentious discussions that framed many of the issues at the San Francisco meeting. “These are very tough decisions and it is understandable that parties would have differing opinions.”

To view the entire video interview with Rod Beckstrom and Peter Dengate Thrush go here: http://www.icann.org/.

MEDIA CONTACTS:        

Brad White
ICANN Director of Global Media Affairs
Washington, DC
Tel. +1 (202) 570 7118
brad.white(at)icann(dot)org

Andrew Robertson
Edelman Public Relations
London, U.K.
Tel. +44 (7811) 341 945
Andrew.Robertson(at)edelman(dot)com

About ICANN: ICANN’s mission is to ensure a stable, secure and unified global Internet. To reach another person on the Internet you have to type an address into your computer - a name or a number. That address has to be unique so computers know where to find each other. ICANN coordinates these unique identifiers across the world. Without that coordination we wouldn't have one global Internet. ICANN was formed in 1998. It is a not-for-profit public-benefit corporation with participants from all over the world dedicated to keeping the Internet secure, stable and interoperable. It promotes competition and develops policy on the Internet’s unique identifiers. ICANN doesn’t control content on the Internet. It cannot stop spam and it doesn’t deal with access to the Internet. But through its coordination role of the Internet’s naming system, it does have an important impact on the expansion and evolution of the Internet. For more information please visit: http://www.icann.org.

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Brad White
ICANN
+1 202.570.7118
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Andrew Robertson
Edelman Public Relations
+1 415.376.8458
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