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Public Comment CloseStatement



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05 August 2019


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Draft submitted by Marita Moll and Maureen Hilyard on 24 July 2019:

Assumption A -- that the key growth enabler has been the roll-out of new GTLDs.

We know how much money came in from the most recent effort but we don't know how much it cost to do this or the sustainability of new gTLDs which are still dormant or somewhat dormant. Although there have been some lessons learned, any next round will be seeking to reach more difficult areas (see F & G), and could be more expensive. Has there been a cost/benefit analysis?

Assumption B -- that the next marketing push should be on brands and geoTLDs

There is little or no evidence that either of these gTLD categories will generate large profits for ICANN in the long run. It is admitted in the paper that most of the brands picked up in the last round were for defensive purposes. The assumption that this will suddenly change is just that -- an assumption that has no basis in reality. 

The subpro workgroups are still struggling with new rules on geonames.

Assumption C - establishing digital presence

In the face of powerful social media platforms of today, there is an equally strong argument to be made that domain names will become increasingly irrelevant. Although this may be an extreme view, it is is not unreasonable to expect the domain name industry will remain fairly constant -- neither growing exceedingly nor shrinking excessively -- into the future.

Assumption D -- interfaces on platforms and apps

see C and B

Assumption E -- Sales channels

n/c -- except perhaps in relation to end-user costs -- but sure this is relevant here

F. Regional disparity

Declining growth in "high income" areas due to penetration. Largest potential is in hard to reach areas -- it will be more expensive to grow the market in these areas

  G. Difficult ensuring universal acceptance

'A key assumption in this forecast is that progress will be made over the next five years to resolve many of the current challenges hindering demand for IDN domains, namely the lack of universal acceptance. Moreover, this will result in demand and expansion in new markets which have historical low rates of domain name adoption."

This assumption is dependent on a great number of variables which will probably take more than 5 years to resolve.

H. Security concerns and trust

"Although security and trust will remain significant ongoing concerns within the DNS industry, the assumption is that confidence and trust in the industry and its overall impact on demand for domains will also remain largely constant. To date, these concerns have not fundamentally altered the underlying demand for domains, but remain potential concerns going forward."

Studies do confirm this overall trust despite problems, so probably not going to detrimentally effect the bottom-line

I. Potential for fractures within the DNA

No one can predict whether this will fundamentally change the demand for domain names

Our conclusions, given the concerns above, is that we would prefer a more conservative projection.............

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