|Date Implemented:||18 July 2014|
|Priority #:||691 - Afilias|
|Parked Domain %:||64.03 %|
|Delegation:||18 July 2014|
|General Availability:||10 February 2015|
The Independent Objector is responsible for determining if a new gTLD application is in the best interest of the Internet community. If not, he or she will file formal objections against a new gTLD application. Alain Pellet, a law professor from the University of Paris and a former member of the United Nations International Law Commission and International Court of Justice, was chosen by ICANN to serve as the sole independent objector for the New gTLD Program in May, 2012.  The position was created by ICANN in accordance with the implementation of the New gTLD Program. As defined, the IO may be an individual or organization and must not be affiliated with any applicant and must carry out their responsibility without bias.
In December 2012 Mr. Pellet released his first correspondence on actual TLDs, commenting on so-called "Controversial strings". Those strings include: .adult, .sex, .porn, .sexy, .hot, .gay, .lgbt, .persiangulf, .vodka, and .wtf. A string seemed to have been deemed "controversial" by Mr. Pellet if it received a substantial amount of objections during the public comment period. He addresses each TLD separately and at length, noting the objection, and turning to International law and precedent to determine whether an objection from his point of view, of defending the public interest, is warranted. In each case he concludes that the objections are not supported by international law and that regional, cultural, and personal issues influence the objections rather than broadly accepted treaties, laws, or international cultural trends. He has reserved the right to later object to the strings, but at that time it was deemed that the "controversial strings" are in fact not offensive to the greater public interest and Internet users.
With Regards to .lgbt, the IO notes that most objections are based on offense created on religious or socio-cultural norms that are not internationally shared or uniform and are not recognized in any international law. In fact, he notes a number of domestic and international laws that uphold non-discrimination, especially with regards to sexual identity and gender. He notes that LGBTQ rights have been spreading and becoming more of a understood and respected subject as time passes. He recognizes that some parties may continue to oppose or be offended by such identities and behavior but argues that a .gay TLD will create a clearly delineated space where those offending parties will know that the content will include gay-related material and can therefore avoid the offensive websites.
The International Lesbian Gay Bisexual Trans and Intersex Association filed a community objection against the application. On November 16, 2013, an ICDR panelist determined that the objection should be dismissed.
The following is excerpted from the applicant's reply to question #18:
"The mission of the .LGBT TLD is to provide individuals and businesses a namespace on the Internet to establish meaningful and relevant identities related to their connection with LGBT (lesbian gay bisexual and transgendered) issues, topics and people, and to promote organizations, companies, products and services especially geared toward people who identify themselves as participating in that lifestyle. The primary purpose is to foster a sense of shared identity and trust among individuals, businesses and organizations who identify with this distinction. We anticipate a variety of reasons that businesses, organizations and individuals would want to acquire domains under the .LGBT TLD.
Businesses and organizations may want to create a professional web presence including online stores or shopping experiences, or use blogs, wikis and file sharing sites to support their merchandising, retailing efforts and business goals, or for sharing of information.
Individuals may use .LGBT domains to create websites to support or announce planned businesses and begin marketing efforts, research and tests, or to create web presences that reflect their involvement with the LGBT lifestyle.
There are at least 30 million people in the U.S. alone who self-identify as participating in the LGBT lifestyle, as well as the businesses and organizations that serve their needs (http:⁄⁄www.gaylawreport.com⁄gay-facts-statistics-2011⁄). We anticipate capturing a small percentage of those people, organizations and businesses in the first three years who will quickly realize the intrinsic value of the .LGBT TLD and will wish to be early adopters of this opportunity. We anticipate that registrants to whom we sell domains will regard an opportunity to register a domain under the .LGBT TLD rather seriously and to put significant effort into building the .LGBT brand and their own brand within that space. Therefore, we forecast having approximately 20,000 Domains Under Management (DUMs) by the third year of operation. Our financial responses in questions #45 through #50 go into detail on our funding, cost and revenue projections. ..
.LGBT will be an open TLD, generally available to all registrants (except in the Sunrise period). In general, domains will be offered for periods of one to ten years, but no greater than ten years. Initial registrations made in the Sunrise period may have a minimum number of years required. For example, there may be a policy that all Sunrise names must be registered for an initial term of at least five years."
- Delegated String, ICANN.org Retrieved 03 Apr 2015
- LGBT Status, ICANN.org
- Independent Objector for New gTLD Program Selected. ICANN. Published 2012 May 14.
- Wanted: somebody to object to new gTLDs. Domain Incite. Published 2011 November 23. Retrieved 2012 November 15.
- The Independent Objectors Comments on Controversial Applications, Independent-Objector-NewgTLDs.orgRetrieved 8 Jan 2013
- Gay General Comment, Independent-Objector-NewgTLDs.org
- Pending Cases, ICCWBO.org Retrieved 14 May 2013
- Objection Determinations, ICANN.org Retrieved 02 Dec 2013
- Application Download, gTLDresult.ICANN.org