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PDP - Vertical Integration

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The issue of revisiting vertical integration of registries arose as a result of concerns expressed by members of the ICANN community in 2007 when it became clear that the GNSO policy recommendations on the New gTLD process were going to be unable to address the issue of the economic, business and/or legal relationships between registries and registrars in developing the implementation details for the New gTLD Program. In response to the concerns expressed by the ICANN community, and at the request of the ICANN community, ICANN retained the research firm CRA International who delivered a report on 23 October 2008, commonly referred to as the CRA Report. The CRA Report recommended that "ICANN … re-examine the economic case for the separation requirement, and in particular to consider whether it might be possible to relax the requirement, initially only in limited cases. Recognizing that it is difficult to reverse the decision once regulations have been removed, we would encourage ICANN to move slowly, but deliberately and in consultation with the industry, towards permitting integration of registry and registrar services under many, but not all, circumstances."

Thereafter, the GNSO Council approved a PDP to review the issues around Vertical Integration of generic Registries and Registrars.


Implementation Status

Web Presence:

Responsible Staff Member:

  • Margie Milam

GNSO Resolution Requesting Issue Report on Vertical Integration:

Adopted on: 24 September 2009

Summary: Resolved: the GNSO Council hereby requests the preparation of an Issues Report for delivery within 45 days on future changes in vertical integration and cross-ownership between gTLD registrars and registries… [see link for details]

Issue Report:

Submitted on: 04 December 2009

GNSO Resolution Delaying the Initiation of the PDP:

Adopted on: 12 December 2009

Summary: RESOLVED, that the Council acknowledges receipt of the Issues Report, thanks Staff for its efforts to produce the report, and agrees to delay consideration of the decision on whether to launch a PDP on the topic of vertical integration until January 2010. … [see link for details]

GNSO Resolution on the Initiation of the PDP:

Adopted on: 28 January 2010

Summary: RESOLVED, that the GNSO Council has reviewed the recommendations contained in the Issues Report, and nonetheless approves the initiation of a PDP on the topic of vertical integration between registries and registrars; … [see link for details]

Working Group Charter:

Adopted on: 10 March 2010

Working Group Initial Report:

Submitted on: 23 July 2010

Working Group Initial Report - Revised:

Submitted on: 18 August 2010

ICANN Board Resolution Text:

Adopted on: 25 September 2010

Summary: The Board will send a letter to the GNSO requesting that the GNSO send to the Board, by no later than 8 October 2010, a letter (a) indicating that no consensus on vertical integration issues has been reached to date, or (b) indicating its documented consensus position. If no response is received by 8 October 2010, then the Board will deem lack of consensus and make determinations around these issues as necessary. At the time a policy conclusion is reached by the GNSO, it can be included in the applicant guidebook for future application rounds.

ICANN Board Resolution Text:

Adopted on: 05 November 2010

Summary: Resolved, (2010.11.05.02), the Board directs the CEO to include the following principles relating to registry-registrar cross-ownership in the forthcoming version of the Applicant Guidebook. … [see link for details]

Working Group Interim Report:

Submitted on: 09 November 2010

Working Group Final Report:

  • Report: Not applicable, the PDP was terminated.

GNSO Resolution to Terminate the Vertical Integration PDP:

Adopted on: 08 December 2010

Summary: RESOLVED, that the GNSO Council recognizes that, in light of these recent developments, there is no longer a need or desire to pursue further policy development activities with respect to this issue; … [see link for details]

Implementation Details:

  • None

Additional Information: