May 25, 2012


ICANN Reopens Application Process

The Internet Corporations for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) has announced it has reopened the application system for new top level domains.  The system, which had been shut down due to a technical glitch, will remain open until May 30.
As of the last report, 1268 registrants have applied for over 2000 new top level domains.  These numbers greatly exceed ICANN’s initial estimates.  ICANN has not announced a schedule for approving new applications or whether they will be done as a group or in a staggered roll out.

In related news Lawrence Strickling, Assistant Secretary of Commerce and Administrator of the National Telecommunications and Information Administration, has replied to Congressman John Dingell’s letter inquiring about the Department’s oversight of ICANN.  While the letter addresses the Congressman’s questions, it appears to greatly understate the Department’s influence over ICANN.

Broadcasters Sue FCC

The National Association of Broadcasters (NAB) has filed suit against the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to block the agency’s order that television stations put all political advertising data online.   Broadcasters are already required to make the information available in paper files.  The NAB suit contends that the new rule is “arbitrary and capricious” and unfair to broadcasters since it does not apply to competitors in cable and satellite.  The suit is filed with the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia.

Online Self-Regulation Growing

The Digital Advertising Alliance self-regulatory program for online behavioral advertising continues to grow and succeed.  AAF sits on the board of the DAA.  Little more than a year ago, the program had 100 participating companies.  Currently, more than 400 companies areactive in the program, including advertisers, publishers, and ad networks.  In addition, there are now more than one hundred third party providers offering consumers choice. These third party providers comprise the vast majority of the marketplace for interest-based ads.  All of these companies are already subject to the DAA’s active enforcement and accountability program.

Word of the program is reaching consumers.  The AdChoices icon has been seen in trillions of online ads.  In addition, more than 5 million unique visitors have visited the Your AdChoiceseducational website to learn more about online behavioral advertising and the self-regulatory program.

The industry is not resting on its laurels.  Consumer behavior, and interest based advertising, is increasingly moving to mobile devices and apps.  DAA is currently looking at how to apply the Your AdChoices self-regulatory principles to these emerging platforms.

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