When .INFO domain names were first introduced in 2001, people with trademarks were given first opportunity to register trademarked names in a "Sunrise period." The Sunrise period came before a "Land Rush" (LR) wherein the general public could register names in a "round robin" process. However, some people registered names during the Sunrise period with bogus trademark information. The registry challenged many bogus Sunrise registrations and released them to the public in "Land Rush 2" (LR2) in 2002 using a round robin process.
The round robin worked as follows. First, people submitted requests to registrars. Second, the order of requests within each registrar's list was randomized. Third, registration went around in a circle to each registrar, entering the first name from each list. If a name was available, the request was registered; if a name was already taken, the request was rejected. This cycle was repeated until all requests were processed. Requests in shorter registrar lists had a greater chance of success. Some registrar lists were closed to the public, at least via the internet.
Some bogus Sunrise registrations have not yet been challenged. Some are locked and seem to be in limbo. Others show changes in ownership in the WHOIS. It is not clear what is happening to them. For those names that are genuinely trademarked by someone other than the current registrant, the person with a genuine trademark can pursue the name through the UDRP process.
ALTERNATIVES FOR VOTING
Please vote for each of the following alternatives that you would find acceptable. You can check more than one and then vote. Multiple votes give a better sense of relative ranking. I have tried to summarize key alternatives and arguments. They do not necessarily represent my views. Your comments are also welcome in the thread. I did not include a paid lottery because of the .BIZ lawsuit.
1. NO SPECIAL ACTION: There is no need for special action because people with genuine trademark claims can use UDRP to get trademarked names taken by bogus registrations and no one else has any greater right to other names than the current registrants.
2. LR3 LIKE LR2: Remaining bogus Sunrise names should be challenged and distributed in a LR3 like LR2.
3. LR3 WITHOUT CLOSED LISTS: Remaining bogus Sunrise names should be challenged and distributed in LR3 like LR2, except that all participating registrars must allow public requests via internet.
4. LR3 WITH EQUAL LENGTH LISTS: Remaining bogus Sunrise names should be challenged and distributed in LR3 like LR2, except that all registrar list lengths should be equalized by adding random blanks to shorter lists. (credit to member "fairness" on ICANN forum for this idea)
5. FREE RANDOM DRAW: Remaining bogus Sunrise names should be challenged and distributed through a random drawing with no charge for submission. Names go to those who submit the most requests and are lucky. One could try to limit the number of requests by person, but this may be difficult to enforce.
6. AUCTION: Remaining bogus Sunrise names should be challenged and auctioned by the registry or registrars. Names go to those who pay the most. Extra value accrues to registry or registrars.
7. ANNOUNCED FIRST-COME FIRST-SERVE: Remaining bogus Sunrise names should be challenged and distributed at an announced time on a first-come, first-serve basis. Names go to those with the most rapid connections. The server may crash.
8. UNANNOUNCED FIRST-COME FIRST-SERVE: Remaining bogus Sunrise names should be challenged and distributed at an unannounced time on a first-come, first-serve basis. Names go to those who check frequently, have insider information, or are just lucky.
9. LR3 FOR LR1 PARTICIPANTS ONLY: Remaining bogus Sunrise names should be challenged and distributed in LR3 like LR2, except that only people with documented, non-refunded, paid requests for those same names during LR1 can participate for those names in LR3. Names go to those who originally lost money due to bogus registrations. May be tough to administer.
10. PROTOTYPE WEBSITE CONTEST: To help increase the number of working .INFO websites, the remaining bogus Sunrise names should be challenged and distributed based on a peer-reviewed contest evaluating usefulness of working prototype websites developed and submitted by applicants. Names go to people who have demonstrated commitment to providing good information content at the name.
author: Robert Connor ("DomeBase" at DomainState.com)