18(b) How do you expect that your proposed gTLD will benefit registrants, Internet users, and others?
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At Microsoft, we are motivated and inspired every day by how our customers use our software, services, and hardware to find creative solutions to business problems, to develop breakthrough ideas, and to stay connected to whatʹs most important to them.
Based on the information provided by ICANN, we expect that our customers will benefit if our new gTLD helps us to deliver a more secure, private computing experience.
i. What is the goal of your proposed gTLD in terms of areas of speciality, service levels or reputation?
The goal of the proposed .microsoft gTLD is to promote Microsoft’s products, services and brand. Because the .microsoft gTLD is the gTLD counterpart to our world-famous Microsoft brand, the importance of maintaining and strengthening this brand dictates that we operate the .microsoft registry to the highest service levels.
ii. What do you anticipate your proposed gTLD will add to the current space in terms of competition, differentiation or innovation?
Our proposed .microsoft gTLD will add differentiation to the current space because there is no .brand registry operated by the brand owner – let alone a .brand registry for a brand as widely known as the MICROSOFT brand, with connections to billions of customers, millions of developers, and hundreds of thousands of partners.
We believe that the most engaging digital experiences will grow out of the combination of four things: smart devices, cloud-based services, natural forms of interaction between people and technology, and peopleʹs imaginations.
The opportunity to operate a new gTLD that exactly matches our primary brand – one of the most globally recognized brands in the world -- may help us to assist our customers in interacting securely across devices and services.
iv. Provide a complete description of the applicants intended registration policies in support of the goals above
The Microsoft Domain Name Management team is responsible for the development, maintenance and enforcement of the .microsoft Domain Management Policy (Msft DMP). The Msft DMP defines the rules for eligibility and domain name allocation, sets out the terms governing the use of a .microsoft domain name, and describes the dispute resolution policies for the .microsoft TLD. We intend to update and revise the Msft DMP as appropriate to reflect Microsoft’s commercial and strategic interests as well as ICANN Consensus Policy and Temporary Policy developments. We summarize below the Msft DMP.
Registration of a .microsoft domain name is a four-step process: Eligibility Confirmation, Naming Convention Check, Acceptable Use Review, and Registration.
Registration of a .microsoft domain name will be restricted to Microsoft Corporation and its wholly owned subsidiaries.
All domains in the .microsoft registry will be registered to Microsoft Corporation or one of its wholly owned subsidiaries.
Checks will be performed to ensure that each applied-for domain name satisfies the .microsoft Naming Conventions. Each .microsoft domain name must:
• not be a prohibited label such as “example”
• be at least 3 characters and no more than 63 characters long;
• not contain a hyphen on the 3rd and 4th position (tagged domains);
• contain only letters (a-z), numbers (0-9) and hyphens or a combination of these;
• start and end with an alphanumeric character, not a hyphen;
• not match any character strings reserved by ICANN; and
• not match any protected country or territory name identified in the internationally recognized lists set forth in Specification 5 to the New gTLD Agreement, unless Microsoft reaches agreement regarding release of such names with the applicable government or pursuant to a proposal reviewed by the ICANN Governmental Advisory Committee and approved by ICANN.
The .microsoft registry may support Internationalized domain names (IDN) at the second level.
.microsoft domain names must be used solely for purposes that, in Microsoft’s sole discretion and judgment, enhance its strategic or commercial interests. .microsoft domains may not be used to knowingly infringe, violate, or misappropriate the intellectual property rights of any third party.
Registrants may not assign any rights in .microsoft domains to any third party.
Microsoft will require that the WHOIS data for all .microsoft domains is accurate and complete.
v. Will your proposed gTLD impose any measures for protecting the privacy of confidential information of registrants or users?
Microsoft is committed to protecting the privacy of employee and customer data.
The .microsoft registry will be operated by the Microsoft Corporation, a corporation organized under the laws of the State of Washington; data will be processed in accordance with applicable data protection requirements. We intend to comply with the Personal Data obligations set forth in Section 2.10 of the Registry Agreement.
vi. Describe whether and in what ways outreach and communications will help to achieve your projected benefits?
We anticipate engaging in the types and scope of outreach and communications appropriate to the operation of a .brand registry in which the brand owner and its wholly owned subsidiaries are the registrants of all second-level domain names.
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