How You Can Object To A New gTLD Extension & What Its Going To Cost You (Hint It’s Not Cheap)

So what if you want to object to a new gTLD string?

The first thing you should know is that not everyone can file an objection.

The second thing you should know is that filing an objection is not free, nor is it exactly cheap (pricing is at the end of the piece).

The cost to object varies depending on the basis for your objection, of which there are 4, and like the UDRP in some cases,  if you want a hearing, how many panelists you want to decide on your objection, how long the hearing lasts and how many objections you have.

According to ICANN “The objection period for new gTLDs begins when the applied-for domain names, or strings, are posted and is intended to remain open for approximately seven months.”

“After the objection filing period closes, all objections received will move through the dispute resolution process, estimated to take approximately five months, in the absence of extraordinary circumstances.”

Filing an Objection

“An objection-filing period was built into the New gTLD Program as a way to protect certain rights and interests.”

“For example, if someone has applied for your brand or trademark, or perhaps you oppose a gTLD that targets a community in which you are involved, you can formally object to that application.”

“Filing an objection gives you the opportunity to have your objection considered before a panel of qualified experts in the relevant subject area.”

“Anyone with standing may submit a formal objection on any one of four objection grounds.”

“All objections must be filed directly with the selected Dispute Resolution Service Provider (DRSP), not with ICANN.”

“Below is a list of objection grounds, who has standing, and which DRSP to file with:

Objection Ground What it Means Who has Standing Dispute Resolution Service Provider
String Confusion The applied for gTLD string is confusingly similar to an existing TLD or to another applied-for gTLD string. If two confusingly similar TLDs are delegated this could cause user confusion.See section 3.2.2.1 of the Applicant Guidebook. An existing TLD operator or a gTLD applicant in the same application round.See section 3.2.2 of the Applicant Guidebook. The International Centre for Dispute ResolutionICDR Fees[PDF, 18 KB]ICDR Rules[PDF, 18 KB]See section 3.2.3 of the Applicant Guidebook
Legal Rights The applied-for gTLD string violates the legal rights of the objector.See section 3.2.2.2 of the Applicant Guidebook. A rightsholder.See section 3.2.2 of the Applicant Guidebook. World Intellectual Property OrganizationWIPO Fees[PDF, 32 KB]WIPO Rules[PDF, 43 KB]See section 3.2.3 of the Applicant Guidebook
Limited Public Interest The applied-for gTLD string goes against generally accepted legal norms of morality and public order that are recognized under principles of international law.See section 3.2.2.3 of the Applicant Guidebook. Anyone can file an objection; however the objection is subject to a “quick look” review designed to filter out frivolous and/or abusive objections.See section 3.2.2 of the Applicant Guidebook. The International Center of Expertise of the International Chamber of CommerceICC Fees[PDF, 117 KB]ICC Practice Note[PDF, 78 KB]See section 3.2.3 of the Applicant Guidebook
Community There is substantial opposition to the gTLD application from a significant portion of the community that the gTLD string is targeting.See section 3.2.2.4 of the Applicant Guidebook. An established institution associated with a clearly defined community.See section 3.2.2 of the Applicant Guidebook. The International Center of Expertise of the International Chamber of CommerceICC Fees[PDF, 117 KB]ICC Practice Note[PDF, 78 KB]See section 3.2.3 of the Applicant Guidebook

How to File an Objection

If you want to file a formal objection to a new gTLD application you will need to:

  • Contact the appropriate dispute resolution service provider and file your objection electronically with them.
  • File your objection in English.
  • File each objection separately. If you wish to object to several applications, you must file a separate objection and pay the accompanying filing fees for each one.

For each objection filed, be sure to include:

  • Your name and contact information as the objector.
  • A statement of why you believe you meet the standing requirements.
  • A description of the basis for the objection, including:
    1. a statement giving the grounds you are objecting on and
    2. a detailed explanation of the validity of your objection and why it should be upheld.
  • Copies of any documents that support your objection.

Objections are limited to 5000 words or 20 pages, which ever is less.

Additional rules can be found by clicking here.

Filing Fees

You must pay a filing fee in the amount set and published by the relevant dispute resolution service provider at the time you file your objection.

If the filing fee is not paid, the objection proceeding will be dismissed.

How much is the filing fee?

The fee’s  vary depending on the grounds for the objection.

If your objecting on the basis on String Confusion, which can only be filed by an existing TLD registry or another applicant for a new gTLD that thinks another application will create confusion with their proposed string, the fees for objecting based on String Confusion are:

Administrative Filing Fees (non-refundable)

$2,750 Filing Fee; per party; per objection

$12,501 Case Service Fee; per party; per objection.

This additional amount only becomes due if any type of hearing is conducted in accordance with Article 19 of the gTLD Dispute Resolution Procedures.

Neutral Panel Compensation (limited to one arbitrator):

$60,002 per objector/applicant.

$30,003 per party.

Same amount billed for each additional day of hearing beyond one day.

If the objection is brought by a someone who thinks the new gTLD String violate some Legal Rights of the Objector then the fees are:

DRSP Fee:

Single-Expert Panel$2,000

Three-Expert Panel$3,000

Panel Fees:

Base Panel Fee for Single Objection to Single Application Dispute:Single-Expert Panel

$8,000

Three-Expert Panel:

$20,000 (Presiding Expert: $10,000; Co-Expert: $5,000)

Panel Fee for Multiple Objections to Single Application:

60% of Regular Base Fee (to be paid per Objection filed):

Single-Expert Panel:

$4,800

Three-Expert Panel:

$12,000 (Presiding Expert: $6,000; Co-Expert: $3,000)

Panel Fee for Multiple Objections filed by Same Objector to Multiple Applications:

80% of Regular Base Fee (to be paid per Objection filed)

Single-Expert Panel:
$6,400

Three-Expert Panel”

$16,000 (Presiding Expert: $8,000; Co-Expert: $4,000).

If the objection is based on Limited Public Interest which can be brought by anyone that believes the The applied-for gTLD string goes against generally accepted legal norms of morality and public order that are recognized under principles of international law, the fees are:

A non-refundable fee of  $5,000. (note the Applicant will also have to pay $5K)

Plus:

Administrative Expenses

“The administrative expenses shall, normally, not exceed $12,000 for one expert panel proceedings and $17,000 for three expert panel proceedings, unless required otherwise by exceptional circumstances.”

Finally if the objection is filed on the basis of Community, which is where “there is substantial opposition to the gTLD application from a significant portion of the community that the gTLD string is targeting”, the fees are:

A non-refundable amount for the administration of proceedings of  $5,000. (note the Applicant will also have to pay $5K)

Plus:

Administrative Expenses

“The administrative expenses shall, normally, not exceed $12,000 for one expert panel proceedings and $17,000 for three expert panel proceedings, unless required otherwise by exceptional circumstances.”

Comments

  1. says

    Looks like a lot of people at ICANN getting paid A LOT of money.

    Must be a great time to be an ICANN employee, consultant, lawyer etc etc.

    And this is all for the public’s benefit?

    Yeah, right.

  2. the pred says

    Jesus, what a bunch of crooks
    this is what they dreamed up all this right of the dot shit for
    the 185 one off fees are peanuts in the big scheme

    it’s the arguments and tussles they are banking on
    icann, the home of lawyer bastards

  3. says

    Anyone want to bet the ICANN Board will approve 100% Refunds at their next meeting ?

    .INC .WEB and a variety of other gTLDs are moving forward** without ICANN.

    In a year people should check to see how much progress has been made. That will be after the 12-12-12 Flag.DAY.

  4. Pete says

    wtf is this, are they trying to be witty with the pricing for their racket:

    $12,501 Case Service Fee; per party; per objection

    $60,002 per objector/applicant.

    $30,003 per party.

  5. says

    “what a racket”

    YEP and people were warned – they did not listen

    Look on the upside – it does not cost anything NOT to object

    …and we now have a huge potential market to route around the ICANN .TOWER of .BABEL

  6. Michael H. Berkens says

    Its a lot of money to spend to object and of course even if the objector “wins” they don’t get anything, they just stop the extension from being added to the root

  7. says

    Non lawyer opinion ….

    ICANN are subject to the laws of California, as the head office is located within Los Angeles, as such, are subject too (not above) US Law.

    If you / your business already owns the .com ~ .net ~ .org consider that your (likely) covered in the United States, because those three endings are anchored in the United States, Eastern District Virginia, were you (maybe) considered “doing business” while not perhaps under a full Trademark, (likely ~ maybe) States Law, even if your not American or an American business.

    Look at this list > http://www.iana.org/domains/root/db/ http://court.cacd.uscourts.gov/cacd/ProSe.nsf/ >> US Federal District Court, Buffalo, New York. >>> I fortunately am located in Canada, about 2 hours from their office, I went in, to get forms & ask questions; and they were very, very gracious! Kindly inviting me to use their library, on the 7th floor, which is … Open to the public.

    They won’t tell you anything; however, the lady there navigated me around, to the correct array of books, for my different questions and let me read. You may also sign books out! I just showed my Canadian passport, and away I went, with a helpful book. (Trademark Law ~ 2nd Edition. ~ LexisNexis)

    If your not so lucky as to be living close the US border; and the great people in Buffalo, NY, visit (make an appointment with) the closest United States Consulate, and perhaps they have the same library at the Consulate and will be as helpful. Chances are they will be!

    Think of ICANN as the school yard bully … Stand-up & fight!

    GOOD LUCK !!!! > Read, read, read ……….. Don’t blindly accept.

    Cheers, Graham.

  8. says

    “they don’t get anything, they just stop the extension from being added to the root”

    People, groups, communities, etc. now work very hard to keep their gTLD from being added to the “ICANN root”. It is like Puerto Rico NOT wanting to be a State,
    or South Florida NOT wanting to become part of .CUBA, despite elections held each year (in Florida).

    ICANN is exclusive. Some people like that clique atmosphere.

    Look at all the Applicants that are obviously missing. Do people think that was a random fluke ?

    People will lobby for 100% refunds now that they see The.Road.Ahead.
    Others plan to lobby ICANN for a new process.
    The U.S. Government will likely be stepping in when the new CEO is announced.

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