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David Weslow Discusses Impact of ICANN's gTLD Program on Businesses

TechRepublic
January 25, 2012

David Weslow, a partner in Wiley Rein’s Intellectual Property Practice, was interviewed by TechRepublic for a story on what the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers’ (ICANN) gTLD program means for  businesses.  Last week, ICANN began accepting applications to operate new generic top-level domains. 

TechRepublic reports that within the business community there is major apprehension over potential trademark and copyright violations that could result from the new domains.  Mr. Weslow provided in-depth analysis to several questions concerning ICANN’s new domain name program, including whether the branding and brand protection benefits of obtaining a new gTLD outweigh ICANN’s $185,000 application fee and additional associated fees and costs.

“Tough to answer; it boils down to trying to predict consumer behavior on the Internet over the next 10 years and whether consumers will begin to recognize the new .anything and .everything extensions as legitimate alternatives to current extensions such as .com,” said Mr. Weslow.  “The fee to ICANN is clearly a big commitment and, in most cases, there will also be significant technical infrastructure related fees.  Companies that make the initial investment during the current application window might have a significant advantage in the marketplace if consumers recognize and use the new extensions; if consumers do not make the switch, it might not pay off.”

To read the full interview, click here.