@TCompuMark said recently on Twitter that
“Some interesting/complicated #gTLD objections to come from when #brands are also generic terms.”
In the root, there’s nowhere to hide.
“Apple” is a trademark. But whose is it? In fact, as we all know, two very well know companies, one in computers and an older one, in the music industry have rights to ‘APPLE’ in the context of computers, and music respectively.
But what if I, say, wanted to start a register of producers of apples. Why should a computer manufacturer and a record company have a right to stop me. The answer is, in terms of fundamental rights, that they don’t.
Yet the ICANN club seems to be geared up to give brand holders prior rights over areas that their brand is not valid in.
Now suppose Apple Computer apply for .APPLE. Apple Records object, causing the application to fail. Mutally assured destruction.
What in fact needs to happen is that the two need to cooperate on a joint venter (say .APPLE Registry LLP in which they are equal partners), obtain the name, and work out for themselves how to issue the names under .APPLE.
Sensible? Of course.
Would it ever happen. Well, I will eat a pickled herring if it does!
I’ve said it before — there may be an opportunity for an intermediary business model here.