The over 500 new gTLD applicants affected by Governmental Advisory Committee advice on their bids have 21 days from today to file their responses officially with ICANN.
But there’s still some confusion about who exactly is expected to file responses, given the extraordinary breadth of the advice contained within the GAC’s Beijing communique.
ICANN today put applicants on formal notice of the publication of the Beijing communique, which actually came out a week ago, and said applicants have until May 10 to respond to the ICANN board.
What it didn’t do is say which applicants are affected. Technically, it could be all of them.
The Beijing communique contains six “safeguards” related to things such as abuse and security, which it said “should apply to all new gTLDs”.
On a more granular level, the GAC has called out, we believe, 517 individual applications that should not be approved or that should not be approved unless they do what the GAC says.
The Beijing communique, it could be argued, throws the whole new gTLD program into disarray, and this is the first chance applicants will get to put their views directly in writing to the ICANN board.