[ALAC] Fwd: Thoughts on Consumer Metrics for new gTLDs

Alan Greenberg alan.greenberg at mcgill.ca
Thu Oct 11 15:24:08 UTC 2012

An interesting message regarding the Advice Letter of the Consumer 
Metrics group.

Opinions welcome as this will be a topic of discussion in the GNSO 
Council on Saturday afternoon in Toronto.


>From: "Neuman, Jeff" <Jeff.Neuman at neustar.us>
>To: "council at gnso.icann.org" <council at gnso.icann.org>
>CC: Steve DelBianco <sdelbianco at netchoice.org>
>Date: Thu, 11 Oct 2012 10:52:15 -0400
>Subject: [council] Thoughts on Consumer Metrics for new gTLDs
>A number of us have recently been discussing the motion up for a 
>vote next week in Toronto to adopt the Working Group's draft advice 
>letter on Consumer Trust, Consumer Choice and Competition.  First, I 
>want to commend the working group on the job that they have done and 
>the meticulous detail incorporated in the letter.  I believe that 
>they group did as good of a job as anyone could do to come up with 
>metrics based on their best predictions as to what the future gTLD 
>landscape would look like.  At the time that the recommendations 
>were created, and the draft advice letter went out for comment, no 
>one knew the number of applications, types of applications, etc.
>Now, after the reveal, we have more information about the landscape 
>and believe that the original criteria included in the final advice 
>letter may not be well suited for a large number of gTLD 
>applications (which later will be TLDs).  While much of the criteria 
>is extremely relevant towards the open gTLDs, they do not 
>necessarily map well to a large number of the other closed, brand, 
>single-registrant or even geographic based TLDs.  Over 1/3 of the 
>applications are for brand TLDs, with many of them being 
>single-registrant TLDs.  Some of the criteria included in the 
>measure of consumer choice section of the Final Advice Letter, for 
>example, are not applicable to the brand TLDs and may, in fact, give 
>misleading results when looking at the issue of consumer choice.  By 
>way of example, the criteria for consumer choice looks at whether 
>the website clearly discloses the benefits and restrictions of the 
>name space (Section 2.1).  This makes sense for open registries, but 
>for a closed TLD (like .neustar), it does not.  As a fairly large 
>$2.5 billion public company, if Neustar converted its homepage to 
><http://www.neustar>http://www.neustar, we would not put anywhere on 
>our home page the benefits/restrictions of .neustar.   As a closed 
>TLD, there would be no other registrants other than Neustar itself 
>and using up valuable space on our homepage to even mention why were 
>are using .neustar just would not make sense.  In addition, Section 
>2.3 (gTLD registry benefits and restrictions should be 
>understandable to registrants and users) and 2.12 (geographic 
>diversity of registrants) would also not be applicable to the 
>closed-TLDs or regional TLDs.  There are other examples.
>Therefore, our recommendation is that the Council consider sending 
>back the letter to the Working Group to revise their advice based on 
>the current gTLD application landscape before passing such advice on 
>to the board.  If this means bifurcating the advice based on the 
>type of TLD, that may make some sense as well.
>We do not want the group to be disheartened, because they did an 
>excellent job with the information that was available at the 
>time.  We now know more and believe that although the letter 
>presents an excellent starting point, it needs some additional work.
>We look forward to discussing this further in Toronto.
>Best regards,
>Jeffrey J. Neuman
>Neustar, Inc. / Vice President, Business Affairs
>46000 Center Oak Plaza, Sterling, VA 20166
>Office: +1.571.434.5772  Mobile: +1.202.549.5079  Fax: 
>+1.703.738.7965 / 
><mailto:jeff.neuman at neustar.biz>jeff.neuman at neustar.biz  / www.neustar.biz

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