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Response to Your ICANN Post - UDRP

Dear Ms. Oppenheimer:

Thank you for submitting your recent comment ("remove the seizure policy") 
to the ICANN web site concerning the implementation documents for the 
uniform dispute resolution policy that were posted earlier this week.  
While I appreciate your concerns, they seem to be directed at the 
provisions of contracts by which various competitive registrars are 
choosing to do business with their customers, rather than at anything 
required by an ICANN policy.

The posted uniform dispute resolution policy does not contain the
language you cite providing for registrars to have sole discretion to
cancel domain names.  In fact, quite to the contrary, Paragraph 7 of the
policy provides that registrars "will not cancel, transfer, activate,
deactivate, or otherwise change the status of any domain name
registration under this Policy" except under defined circumstances.
These include: instructions from the domain name holder; receipt of a
decision of a court or neutral administrative panel, as agreed by
the registrar and domain-name holder in the registration agreement;
or pursuant to other legal requirements.

Similarly, the Registrar Accreditation Agreement does not require that
registrars have sole discretion to take away domain names. Section I.7.i 
of the current accreditation agreement says:

"The SLD holder shall agree that its registration of the SLD name
shall be subject to suspension, cancellation, or transfer by any
ICANN procedure, or by any registrar or registry administrator
procedure approved by an ICANN-adopted policy, (1) to correct
mistakes by Registrar or the registry administrator in registering
the name or (2) for the resolution of disputes concerning the SLD

The accreditation agreement language in paragraph I.7.i has been in place 
since last March when it was adopted by the ICANN Board following an 
extensive public comment period and in connection with substantial 
revisions to the initial staff draft based on community comment.  There 
was not then, nor since then until you raised the issue recently, been any 
substantive opposition to this provision. 

The Accreditation Agreement does not prescribe language for the agreements
between registrars and domain-name holders, but instead simply states 
minimum policy-based requirements.  Beyond these requirements, the 
marketplace is allowed to determine the terms under which registrars and 
domain-name holders will deal.

This approach allows the parties to choose provisions that reflect local 
business conditions, legal jurisdictions, and other considerations.  ICANN 
has neither the authority nor the resources to be a consumer protection 
agency, and in any event there are existing protections for abuses of this 
type such as better business bureaus, trade commissions, etc in most of 
the countries in which domain name activity is present.

- Mike Roberts
  Interim President/CEO, ICANN