ANA calls ICANN plan 'potentially disastrous'

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New York—The Association of National Advertisers called “potentially disastrous” the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers' proposed massive increase of the number of Internet address endings—called generic top-level domains—from the current 22, which include .com, .org and .net.

In a letter sent to ICANN President Rod Beckstrom, ANA said the program was insufficiently researched and would cause harm to its more than 400 members. The ANA contends that the new gTLD program, which would enable so called .brand domain names, will increase cybersquatting and other malicious online conduct.

"In our research, we have found no consensus for support for the program among businesses, consumers, academics, researchers, agencies or government," Douglas J. Wood, ANA's general counsel and a partner with Reed Smith, said in a statement. "The paucity of support suggests an overwhelming rejection of ICANN's assertions that there would be 'benefits' for business and industry at large."

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