ICANN is looking for somebody to object to new top-level domain applications.
It’s put out a call for an Independent Objector, whose job it will be to file formal objections to new gTLDs that he or she determines may not be in the public interest.
ICANN is looking for somebody with an in-depth knowledge of the new gTLD program and extensive experience in multinational organizations.
The IO has been a planned component of the new gTLD program for a couple of years.
The role is designed to provide a way to kill off “highly objectionable” applications in cases where the affected community may lack the resources or organization to pay for an objection.
Essentially, the IO looks at public comments filed with ICANN and decides whether opposition to a gTLD is substantial enough to warrant a formal objection.
The IO may only use two of the Applicant Guidebook’s objection mechanisms – the Community Objection and the Limited Public Interest (formerly “morality and public order”) Objection and not trademark or string confusion grounds.
My view is that we’re likely to see very few “highly objectionable” applications. And now that ICANN has agreed to fund some government objections, the IO is likely to wind up being a bit of an easy ride for whoever successfully applies for the job.
Interested parties have until December 22 to apply. The job description can be found here.