CADNA Strongly Supports ICANN Oversight Hearing

WASHINGTON, April 27, 2011 – The Coalition Against Domain Name Abuse (CADNA) strongly supports Rep. Bob Goodlatte (R-VA), Chairman of the House Committee on the Judiciary Subcommittee on Intellectual Property, Competition, and the Internet, in his decision to convene an oversight hearing on ICANN and generic top-level domains (gTLDs). CADNA wholeheartedly endorses Chairman Goodlatte’s decision to review ICANN governance and policy development in relation to the proposed roll out of new gTLDs. The oversight hearing coincides with U.S. Department of Commerce Assistant Secretary for NTIA Larry Strickling’s recent comments expressing concern about ICANN’s lack of responsiveness in upholding their obligations under the Affirmation of Commitments.

“This hearing was absolutely necessary. Chairman Goodlatte, Ranking Member Watts and the Subcommittee will quickly learn through routine questioning that ICANN is badly in need of attention. It has failed time and time again to be responsive to the Internet community,” CADNA President Josh Bourne states. “This hearing is not about whether the ICANN model is right or wrong; the hearing is about whether ICANN is functioning properly and representing the interests of the Internet community in a manner commensurate with the responsibilities it was given.”

The oversight hearing will take place on Wednesday, May 4, 2011 at 10:00 a.m. in the Rayburn House Office Building. Almost two years have passed since the U.S. House has convened a hearing on ICANN. CADNA expects the committee to take a hard look at ICANN’s internal governance structure and its policy development process. The issue of ICANN’s accountability and the manner in which it plans to use the fees collected from new gTLD applications will likely be examined as well.

“ICANN is an important organization and holds a tremendous amount of power over the Internet’s namespace. It is only natural that some public understanding of the organization is pursued. Chairman Goodlatte is truly building on his strong leadership in this area with this timely hearing,” remarks Nao Matsukata, Senior Policy Advisor to CADNA and to Alston and Bird, LLP.

This hearing is an excellent first step in bringing greater transparency to governance of the domain name system. In a matter of months, the Internet Assigned Numbers Authority (IANA) contract, the basis of ICANN’s authority in this area, will be up for renewal. CADNA looks forward to an open public review of this contract, which is administered by the U.S. Department of Commerce, along with additional follow up on ICANN-related matters that will likely be discussed during this hearing.

The Coalition Against Domain Name Abuse (CADNA) is a 501(c)(6) nonprofit organization dedicated to ending the systemic domain name abuses that plague the Internet today. For more information, please visit