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April 21, 2004

ICANN gets new oversight

The Internet Corp for Assigned Names and Numbers this week appointed a long-awaited Independent Review Panel, adding an avenue of appeals for people who believe they have been wronged by ICANN acting outside its own bylaws.

By CBR Staff Writer

Hiring the International Centre for Dispute Resolution could mean ICANN will see fewer lawsuits filed against it in future. In many recent cases, complainants have expressed exasperation with the absence of an IRP to resolve disputes.

ICDR is a division of the American Arbitration Association. It has a European office in Dublin, Ireland. ICANN may also engage other providers in future, according to a resolution its board adopted on Monday.

Having an IRP to resolve disputes stemming from ICANN’s actions has been a part of its bylaws since it was formed in 1998. It absence has been a basis of criticism from companies that have relationships with ICANN over the years.

Notably, VeriSign’s recent high-profile lawsuit cited ICANN’s failing to establish any meaningful, adequate and independent review policies and procedures among its many claims. Dotster Inc, a registrar, included similar charges in a June 2003 lawsuit.

The organization’s original bylaws anticipated an ICANN-appointed set of panelists, but that idea was abandoned in 2002 after its nominating committee stalled and it was decided that finding suitable panelists was next to impossible.

The notion of hiring an established third party provider came about as a part of former CEO Stuart Lynn’s moves to reform ICANN, which resulted in a new set of bylaws that became effective in December 2002.

This article is based on material originally published by ComputerWire

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