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Sunday, 21 October 2012

ICANN consultation on post-expiration domain name recovery policy

Ever missed an important deadline and needed to blame your pet/ partner/ children/ mailman/ ISP/ mobile phone operator in an attempt to secure some kind of grace period? Well, help may be at hand, at least in relation to renewal of domain name registrations.

On 5 December 2008, ICANN published an Issues Report on the topic of Post-Expiration Domain Name Recovery at the request of ICANN’s At-Large Advisory Committee. In May 2009, the Generic Names Supporting Organization Council (‘GNSO’) initiated a Policy Development Process, which resulted in the submission of several policy and process recommendations to the ICANN Board. On 28 October 2011, the ICANN Board approved the recommendations and on 11 October 2012 a draft Expired Registration Recovery Policy (ERRP) was released for Members of the Internet Community to provide feedback.

ERRP is intended to help align registrant expectations with registrar practices by establishing certain minimum communications requirements, making renewal and redemption of registrations uniformly available in prescribed circumstances, and through the creation and promotion of registrant educational materials. It applies to all generic top level domain (gTLD) registrations.

The proposals include:
Reminder Notices 
1. Prior to the expiration of any gTLD registration, Registrars must notify the Registrant at least twice. One of these notices must be sent approximately one month prior to expiration and one must be sent approximately one week prior to expiration.  
2. If a registration is not renewed by the Registrant, the Registrar must send at least one additional notice within five days of the expiration date. 
Post-Expiration Renewal
3. Subject to the Registrar Accreditation Agreement (RAA), Registrars may delete registrations at any time after they expire. 
4. For registrations deleted within eight days of expiration, the existing Domain Name Service (DNS) resolution path specified by the Registrar must be interrupted by the Registrar from expiration of the registration until its deletion, to the extent the applicable registry permits such interruptions. 
5. For registrations deleted eight or more days after expiration: For the last eight consecutive days (after expiration) that the registration is renewable by the Registrant, the existing DNS resolution path specified by the RAE must be interrupted by the registrar to the extent that the applicable registry permits such interruptions. 
6. In interrupting the DNS resolution path of the registration, if the Registrar directs web traffic to the web page of domain name while that registration is still renewable by the Registrant, that web page must clearly indicate that the domain name registration is expired and provide renewal instructions. 
7. From the time of expiration to the DNS resolution interruption periods described above, the Registrant must be allowed by the Registrar to renew the expired registration. 
8. Upon renewal of the registration by the Registrant, the Registrar must restore the DNS resolution path set by the Registrar immediately or as soon as is commercially reasonable. 
9. gTLD Registrars must offer a Grace Period of 30 days immediately following the deletion of a registration 
10. During the Grace Period, the Registrar must disable DNS resolution and prohibit attempted transfers of the registration.

11. The Registrar must also clearly indicate in its WHOIS result for the registration that it is in its Grace Period. 
12. Registrars must permit the Registrant to redeem a deleted registration during the Grace Period.
Notice to Registrants of Fees and Procedures  
13. Registrars must make their renewal fees, post-expiration renewal fees (if different), and redemption/restore fees reasonably available to Registrants and potential registrants at the time of registration of a gTLD name. 
14. Registrars must describe on their websites (if used) the methods used to deliver pre- and post-expiration notifications. 
15. If ICANN publishes Registrant education materials addressing proper stewardship of domain names and renewal and redemption of gTLD registrations online, Registrars must, after reasonable notice from ICANN, make this material (or similar material adapted by the registrar to its specific practices) available to Registrants.

The consultation closes on 12 November 2012. You can leave your comments and view other suggestions here

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