On Monday July 1, Barrack Otieno introduced a discussion topic on Kictanet titled “dot Africa Reserve Name Policy Discussions (Introduction)” which tended to give the impression that the “.Africa” (DotAfrica) gTLD had already been delegated by ICANN to South Africa’s UniForum.
Soon after Barrack’s post, listers started seeking enquiries, with Michael Bullut asking for clarification below:
Further questions and comments followed until the other contender for the continental domain DotConnectAfrica Trust (DCA) got into the discussion to clarify its position as relates to the “.africa” issue as below:
“DotConnectAfrica has been made aware the proposed discussion in the above subject on the kictanet mailing lists.
We understand that there should be ongoing discussions that pertain to the anticipated .africa top level domain name. However DotConnectAfrica feels obliged to inform the general Listers who may have questions like Mr. Michael Bullut below, that while the discussions are being conducted no organization has been given the mandate to run the registry, since both applicants for .africa new gTLD applications are undergoing initial evaluations, and not even the evaluation results are published.
It?s our understanding that Uniforum has in many occasions attempted to mainstream itself as the only front runner for the .africa gTLD. Some of the information that has been posted in the past includes reports such as ICANN AGREES?THERE IS ONLY ONE APPLICANT FOR .AFRICA? and New local domains see breakthrough provided here.
This information had only served to mislead the public who access this information. Towards this end, DotConnectAfrica has been forced to clarify its positions continuously. Some of the clarifications published by DotConnectAfrica regarding .africa in the past are also available on the
following links below:
Both applications are firmly under ICANN’s scrutiny and at no certain time has ICANN given any information as to who has won the mandate for .africa. Even as any online discussion is going on, let this be only for the good of informing the public as a matter of general concept but not affiliated to
Uniforum nor DotConnectAfrica.
The online mail list members have a right to know facts and truth in order to be able to discuss and deliberate wisely.
Further, DotConnectAfrica in its application to ICANN has put forward the following as regards to Reserve Name Policy (RNL) that has been brought to discussion in this list, you can find the entire response here in the public portion of our application submission.
1. DCA DotAfrica Registry Services has considered the relevant provisions of the new gTLD Registry Agreement, the GAC Advice? GAC Principles Regarding new TLDs? and the procedures adopted by other gTLD registries and intend to use the procedure described below with regards to
protection of geographic names in the DotAfrica gTLD.
2. Prior to the launch of DotAfrica gTLD, DCA DotAfrica Registry Services will compile a list of country and territory names that are subject to reservation at the second level.
3. Pursuant to the specification provided in ICANN?s Applicant Guidebook, the list will include country and territory names based on the following internationally recognized lists:
o The short form (in English) of all country and territory names contained on the ISO 3166-1 list;
o The United Nations Group of Experts on Geographical Names, Technical Reference Manual for the Standardization of Geographical Names, Part III Names of Countries of the World; and
o The list of United Nations member states in 6 official United Nations languages prepared by the Working Group on Country Names of the United Nations Conference on the Standardization of Geographical Names;
As the above documents get updated from time to time, the exact list of reserved names will be compiled shortly before the launch of DotAfrica gTLD to account for any updates. The list of reserved names will be published on the Registry website.
Reservation of specific country and territory names may be released to the extent that Applicant reaches agreement with the applicable government(s).
Second level domain name for geographical and geopolitical names
Countries will be expected to identify and notify DCA DotAfrica Registry Services on a limited list of broadly-recognised names (in all languages) with regard to geographical and?or geopolitical concepts which affect their political or territorial jurisdiction. Such lists include names that could either not be registered or which could be registered only under the second level domain in accordance with the public policy rules. The names included in these lists are not subject to the first-come first-served principle. DCA DotAfrica Registry Services will send out notifications to all the relevant authorities in all countries and territories in the world to this effect. Such names will be blocked by DCA DotAfrica Registry Services at minimal cost. To this end, each country will be expected to send to DCA DotAfrica Registry Services, two months to the commencement of the Sunrise Period, a list of those names that should not be registered.
Finally, It’s unfortunate that DotConnectAfrica is being forced to clarify again and again that no .africa applicant has been given a green light by ICANN. This only goes to show how much needs to be done in terms of informing the internet community about facts on the ICANN gTLD process,
transparency and the rule of the Applicants Guide Book.
Thank you for reading