Employ Media will appeal ICANN’s threatened termination of its .jobs registry contract.
“We view the substance of this notice to be a surprising reversal of position and contradictory to prior decisions issued by its Board of Directors,” the company said.
ICANN yesterday gave Employ Media until the end of the month to cancel its agreement to provide 40,000 .jobs domains to the DirectEmployers Association for its Universe.jobs employment board.
The organization said the allocation of the domains for non-human-resources purposes went against the letter, spirit and intent of the registry’s contract and Charter.
It essentially boils down to a claim that Employ Media hacked its contract to allow it to start making money on names beyond the limited scope of its original “sponsored” community TLD.
The .jobs TLD was originally pitched as a space for corporate HR pages, not independent jobs sites. With Universe.jobs, half of the namespace is an independent jobs site. Employ Media is believed to have a revenue-sharing arrangement with DirectEmployers.
The ICANN breach notice was welcomed by the .JOBS Charter Compliance Coalition, the ad hoc trade group formed by major commercial jobs sites to fight Universe.jobs.
Peter Weddle, executive director of the International Association of Employment Web Sites, said in a press release:
the Dot Jobs Universe was not an innovation but rather an unprecedented attempt by a registry operator to misappropriate an entire TLD for itself and its alliance partner in blatant disregard of ICANN’s rules.
Employ Media disagrees, of course, saying that Universe.jobs came about as a result of its “Phased Allocation” liberalization plan, which was approved by ICANN’s Registry Services Evaluation Process and then survived a Reconsideration Request filed by the Coalition.
The company said: “it is imperative for registry operators to have predictability in the performance of duties and that ICANN has a responsibility to honor its commitments with contracted parties.”
Its registry contract contains a dispute resolution procedure that first calls for bilateral talks and, failing agreement, arbitration via the International Chamber of Commerce.