Moving Forward

Amazon is confident that it is possible to use .AMAZON for our business purposes while respecting the people, culture, history, and ecology of the Amazonia region. We believe the best way to do this is by adding a legally binding Public Interest Commitment (PIC) to our contract with ICANN. Our proposed PIC would establish the specific steps Amazon would take to ensure our use of .AMAZON avoids any confusion with the Amazonia region. It would also establish a requirement to work with governments of the region to address their needs. Crucially, Amazon would be legally obligated to satisfy the terms of the PIC, just as we would any other provision in our contract. This means that ICANN Compliance would review any alleged violation. If a resolution can’t be found, the complaining party could file a complaint under the PIC Dispute Resolution Procedure. This practical compromise solution appropriately responds to the sensitivities raised by the relevant governments, enables ICANN to deliver on the goals of the New gTLD program, and allows Amazon access to a vital space in which to innovate on behalf of our global customers.

Amazon’s proposed compromise – we will:

  • Permanently block use of culturally sensitive terms at the second level (e.g., “rainforest”). The list of blocked terms would be developed with OTCA and its Member Governments.
  • Develop a formal process with OTCA and its Member Governments to periodically review and adjust as necessary the list of culturally sensitive blocked terms.
  • Present a Memorandum of Understanding to ICANN setting out (i) Amazon’s non-objection to any future TLD application filed or endorsed by the OTCA and/or its Member Governments for the TLD strings “.AMAZONIA”, “.AMAZONAS” or “.AMAZONICA”; and (ii) Amazon’s agreement to support, in ways mutually acceptable to both Amazon and OTCA and/or its Member Governments, for such future TLD applications. (Support could include technical and application preparation support.)


What is a PIC?
Each new gTLD application includes business plans and statements of intent regarding applicant plans for operation of the proposed new gTLD registry. For example, some applicants stated in their applications that they intend to implement registration restrictions or heightened rights protection mechanisms above those required in the current draft of the New gTLD Registry Agreement. Pursuant to GAC Advice, the New gTLD Program Committee of the Board created a Public Interest Commitments Specification as a mechanism to transform application statements into binding contractual commitments, as well as to give applicants the opportunity to voluntarily submit to heightened public interest commitments. To date, registry operators have made 499 PICs. Only two have been the subject of a PICDRP.
How is a PIC enforced?

The Public Interest Commitments Dispute Resolution Procedure (“PICDRP”) is a dispute resolution policy administered by ICANN itself. If a registry operator breaches its agreement with ICANN, the person or entity that has been harmed may report such non-compliance, which initiates a review by ICANN’s Compliance team. If the issue is not resolved between the registry operator and the aggrieved party, a neutral panel is appointed to evaluate the complaint. Amazon’s PIC specifies that complaints can be brought by OTCA on behalf of any member governments.