ICM Publishes Open Letter to ICANN, Internet Community

PALM BEACH, Fla. — ICM has published an open letter to ICANN and the Internet community in its ongoing effort to lobby ICANN to approve the .XXX sTLD.

The letter says that ICM is disappointed and dismayed that ICANN staff would contemplate disregarding the findings of the independent panel and says that is exactly what two of the three process options put forward by ICANN staff would do.

The review panel found that ICANN’s handling of ICM’s application violated ICANN’s Bylaws and Articles of Incorporation.

In March, FSC’s Diane Duke wrote to ICANN expressing their outrage at the prospect of a .XXX top level domain, saying “the adult industry not only opposes the ICM Registry application, but also believes that such a TLD would be detrimental to the industry as a whole.”

Recently, FSC submitted its comment to ICANN in support of option No. 3. FSC also agreed with the dissenting opinion of ICANN's Independent Review Panel (IRP) in that ICM "never satisfied the sponsorship requirements and criteria for a sponsored TLD." FSC also supports the opinion that "the (ICANN) Board denied ICM's application for the .XXX sTLD on the merits in an open and transparent forum."

The ICM letter continues, “the panel did find that its declaration was not binding on the ICANN Board but we expected that ICANN would respect the views of the Panel and honor, in ICANN's own words, its ‘ultimate’ accountability mechanism. It is profoundly disappointing then that the options paper, which was produced by the same team whose arguments were dismissed by the IRP, effectively ignores every other aspect of the panel's declaration.”

ICM adds that independent experts confirmed that ICANN Board’s decision to reject .XXX in 2007 was the product of bad advice and urges the Board to be cautious about following the advice it has received in regards to the three process options that disregard the panel’s conclusions.

“Neither the ICANN Board nor the ICANN community is well served by this approach. What's more, it is costing ICANN, ICM and the Internet community millions of dollars to continue down this path.”

The public comment period runs through May 10.

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