ICANN Resolutions » Renewal of .coop TLD Registry Agreement
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Whereas, the registry operator for .coop, DotCooperation LLC, has an existing agreement with ICANN org and it is set to expire on 22 November 2018.
Whereas, ICANN org entered into negotiations with the registry operator to develop a proposed renewal agreement and commenced a public comment period from 11 June 2018 through 27 July 2018 on the proposed Renewal Registry Agreement for the .coop TLD, receiving comments from two organizations. A summary and analysis of the comments were provided to the Board.
Whereas, the Board has reviewed the comments and determined that no revisions to the proposed .coop Renewal Registry Agreement are necessary after taking the comments into account.
Whereas, the .coop Renewal Registry Agreement includes new provisions consistent with the comparable terms of the New gTLD Registry Agreement.
Resolved (2018.09.16.07), the proposed .coop Renewal Registry Agreement is approved and the President and CEO, or his designee(s), is authorized to take such actions as appropriate to finalize and execute the Agreement.
Why is the Board addressing the issue now?
ICANN org and DotCooperation LLC entered into a Registry Agreement on 01 July 2007 for operation of the .coop top-level domain. The current .coop TLD Registry Agreement expires on 22 November 2018 and the registry operator has the right to a presumptive renewal with the existing agreement. The proposed Renewal Registry Agreement was posted for public comment between 11 June 2018 and 27 July 2018. At this time, the Board is approving the proposed .coop Renewal Registry Agreement for the continued operation of the .coop TLD by DotCooperation LLC.
What is the proposal being considered?
The proposed .coop TLD Renewal Registry Agreement is based on the current .coop TLD Registry Agreement with modifications agreed upon by ICANN org and DotCooperation LLC and includes certain provisions from the base New gTLD Registry Agreement.
Which stakeholders or others were consulted?
ICANN org conducted a public comment period on the proposed .coop Renewal Registry Agreement from 11 June 2018 and 27 July 2018. Additionally, ICANN org engaged in negotiations with the Registry Operator to agree to the terms to be included in the proposed .coop Renewal Registry Agreement that was posted for public comment.
What concerns or issues were raised by the community?
The public comment forum on the proposed .coop Renewal Registry Agreement closed on 27 July 2018, with ICANN org receiving two (2) comments. The comments can be summarized in the two categories listed below.
The inclusion of new gTLD Rights Protection Mechanisms (RPMs) and safeguards such as Public Interest Commitments in legacy gTLDs registry agreement renewals: One commenter expressed support for the inclusion in the proposed renewal agreement of certain rights protection mechanisms, such as Uniform Rapid Suspension and Trademark Post-Delegation Dispute Resolution Procedure, and the inclusion of the Public Interest Commitments (i.e., safeguards) contained in the base gTLD Registry Agreement. Conversely, one commenter expressed concern over the inclusion of base gTLD rights protection mechanisms in legacy agreements. They suggested that these provisions should not be added as a result of contract negotiations but should be addressed through the GNSO policy development process ("PDP").
The negotiation process for the proposed renewal of the .coop TLD Registry Agreement and legacy gTLD registry agreement negotiations in general: One commenter was encouraged that .coop is transitioning to the technical and operational specifications from the base gTLD Registry Agreement, but was disappointed that .COM and .NET have not modernized their terms as well. Another commenter reiterated objections to the negotiation process, stating that GDD staff "unilaterally establishes a new status quo for registry agreements" and substitutes "its (GDD) judgement instead of GNSO policy development" by exceeding its "powers and overrides safeguards intended to preserve transparency and inclusion with the multistakeholder community."
What significant materials did the Board review?
As part of its deliberations, the Board reviewed various materials, including, but not limited to, the following materials and documents:
Proposed .coop TLD Renewal Registry Agreement [PDF, 414 KB]
Redline showing changes compared to the current .coop TLD Registry Agreement [PDF, 569 KB]
Current .coop TLD Registry Agreement
New gTLD Agreement – 31 July 2017 [PDF, 669 KB]
Public Comment Summary and Analysis [PDF, 285 KB]
What factors has the Board found to be significant?
The Board carefully considered the public comments received for the .coop Renewal Registry Agreement, along with the summary and analysis of those comments. The Board also considered the terms agreed upon by the Registry Operator as part of the bilateral negotiations with ICANN org.
While the Board acknowledges the concerns expressed by some community members regarding the inclusion of the URS in the proposed Renewal Registry Agreement, the Board notes that the inclusion of the URS in the Renewal Registry Agreement is based on the negotiations between ICANN org and the Registry Operator, where Registry Operator expressed its interest in renewing its agreement based on the new gTLD Registry Agreement.
The Board notes that the URS was recommended by the Implementation Recommendation Team (IRT) as a mandatory rights protection mechanism (RPM) for all new gTLDs. The GNSO was asked to provide its view on whether certain proposed rights protection mechanisms (which included the URS) were consistent with the GNSO's proposed policy on the introduction of New gTLDs and were the appropriate and effective option for achieving the GNSO's stated principles and objectives. The Special Trademark Issues Review Team (STI) considered this matter and concluded that "Use of the URS should be a required RPM for all New gTLDs." That is, the GNSO stated that the URS was not inconsistent with any of its existing policy recommendations.
Although the URS was developed and refined through the process described here, including public review and discussion in the GNSO, it has not been adopted as a consensus policy and ICANN org has no ability to make it mandatory for any TLDs other than new gTLD applicants who applied during the 2012 New gTLD round.
Accordingly, the Board's approval of the Renewal Registry Agreement is not a move to make the URS mandatory for any legacy TLDs, and it would be inappropriate to do so. In the case of .coop, inclusion of the URS was developed as part of the proposal in negotiations between the Registry Operator and ICANN org.
Are there positive or negative community impacts?
The Board's approval of the .coop Renewal Registry Agreement offers positive technical and operational benefits. For example, the .coop Renewal Registry Agreement includes the same Approved Services as included in the base gTLD Registry Agreement plus DNS Service - TLD Zone Contents, and Active Domain Directory. In addition, DotCooperation LLC will be required to follow the same public interest commitments for .coop as in the base gTLD Registry Agreement. Taking this action is in the public interest as it contributes to the commitment of ICANN org to strengthen the security, stability, and resiliency of the DNS.
Are there fiscal impacts or ramifications on ICANN org (e.g. strategic plan, operating plan, budget), the community, and/or the public?
There is no significant fiscal impact expected from the .coop Renewal Registry Agreement.
Are there any security, stability or resiliency issues relating to the DNS?
The .coop Renewal Registry Agreement is not expected to create any security, stability, or resiliency issues related to the DNS. The .coop Renewal Registry Agreement includes terms intended to allow for swifter action in the event of certain threats to the security or stability of the DNS, as well as other technical benefits expected to provide consistency across all registries leading to a more predictable environment for end-users.