18(b) How do you expect that your proposed gTLD will benefit registrants, Internet users, and others?

Prototypical answer:

gTLDFull Legal NameDetail
.skySky IP International Ltd, a company incorporated in England and Wales, operating via its registered Swiss branchView

18(b)i. What is the goal of your proposed gTLD in terms of areas of specialty, service levels or reputation?

The key goals of the proposed .sky gTLD, in line with ICANN’s Affirmation of Commitments, are:
1. to promote consumer trust and reduce the risk of malicious abuse. Sky will promote consumer trust by controlling the registration and use of domain names under the .sky gTLD. As a leading global media, entertainment, betting and gaming, and telecommunications company, it is critical that Sky continues to maintain a secure and uncompromised online presence. The second level .sky domain names will provide a highly distinctive and unique online space for Sky which would be clearly different from other online offerings from its competitors;
2. to promote consumer choice and innovation by its ability to implement user-driven improvements from feedback and discussion; and
3. to promote online competition among Sky’s competitors in the broadcasting, entertainment, telecommunications, betting and gaming, and media industries at the gTLD level based on the anticipated success of the .sky gTLD, as well as promoting competition with existing TLD registry operators that do not implement mechanisms to build consumer trust.

Sky wishes to enhance and maximise its already substantial online reputation by utilising the anticipated advantages of the proposed .sky gTLD as a restricted registry. The anticipated advantages would include improving Sky customer online interaction and customer experience. A tailored Sky customer experience could be created, which would enhance the promotion and delivery of Sky’s innovative products and services. This will also provide Sky with an immense opportunity to foster and develop innovation and creativity through use of the .sky gTLD. The .sky gTLD will improve customer service levels, online functionality and security measures. We anticipate that these improvements will promote increased competition online.

18(b)ii. What do you anticipate your proposed gTLD will add to the current space, in terms of competition, differentiation, or innovation?

It is anticipated that the proposed .sky gTLD will make positive contributions to the wider internet community by:
• increasing trust;
• promoting competition;
• making a point of differentiation from other domains; and
• fostering innovation.

Increasing trust
The current domain name system has shown that it is vulnerable to malicious abuses, due to registration of domain names that seek to exploit consumer confusion. Sky can address some of these vulnerabilities by maintaining complete control over the domain names registered under the .sky gTLD. Domain name registrations will be restricted to Sky affiliate entities for use by the Sky group companies and Sky licensees, which will eliminate the potential for registration abuses. Internet users will be able to trust and rely on the authenticity of domain names registered under the .sky gTLD.

Promoting competition
By creating, maintaining and promoting the .sky gTLD as a trusted online site for Sky, this will encourage existing and new TLD registry operators to make changes in their mechanisms to improve consumer trust of their TLDs. Internet users will be encouraged to interact with domain names under the .sky domain space. TLD registry operators and Sky’s industry competitors who continue to rely on the existing domain name system will be required to address and overcome some of the shortfalls of this system. As a result, the launch of the .sky gTLD will benefit internet users through the anticipated improvement of services in the marketplace.

Making a point of differentiation
The .sky gTLD will simplify how internet users interact with Sky by providing a distinctive Sky domain space. The .sky gTLD will allow for short, memorable and user-friendly domain names to be used. This is particularly important for increasing the number of users accessing Sky content online including through mobile and tablet devices. Internet users will be able to directly navigate to a .sky gTLD site, thereby saving time and resources involved with searching for an official Sky site. By instilling consumer trust in the .sky gTLD, internet users will come to recognise .sky domains as trusted and authentic Sky sites.

Fostering Innovation
With the expansion of the internet community to all corners of the world, the existing gTLD structure presents limitations, not only in the availability of domain names for registrants, but also in the ability of businesses and organisations to establish a coherent global online brand presence. It is often difficult to register a relevant and meaningful domain name in the existing domain space because it is often unavailable. Even where a third party is prepared to sell the desired domain name, the purchase price may be undesirably high. Since the .sky gTLD is a restricted gTLD, Sky can effectively create second or third level domain names on demand. The .sky gTLD is anticipated to improve the structure of the current network of Sky sites and will therefore create a coherent online brand strategy for Sky. This is particularly relevant as a coherent online brand strategy for Sky will improve many things including online marketing, search engine optimisation practices and online reputation management. Through such improvements, Sky will be able to deliver innovative user-focused marketing and services thereby providing greater consumer choice compared to what is currently available in the existing domain name system.

18(b)iii. What goals does your proposed gTLD have in terms of user experience?

Current challenges
Today, internet users often have difficulty in locating and⁄or verifying whether a particular domain is legitimately associated with a particular business or organisation. This is often because there are many unauthorised (and potentially malicious) third parties who have registered domain names which incorporate the name of a business or organisation thereby creating user confusion as to the authenticity of the domain name. This often results in businesses and organisations with a legitimate right to a name finding that certain domain names containing the relevant business name have already been registered by unauthorised third parties.

Positive user experience
The proposed .sky gTLD is anticipated to provide a positive user experience as described above, which will meet the changing and growing needs of the global internet community. Sky will maintain control of the registration and use of domain names and will ensure that the .sky gTLD will only be used for purposes authorised by Sky. Therefore, the .sky gTLD will:
• provide an easy and intuitive reference and access point for internet users;
• represent authenticity, thus promoting user confidence;
• direct internet users to relevant information in a timely manner by creating appropriate domain names on demand;
• offer IDNs at the second level, allowing users to interact with Sky in their native language;
• use geographic names in second and third level .sky domains to connect with relevant users from the corresponding region⁄geographical area
• enhance security and minimise security risks by implementing necessary technical and policy measures;
• strengthen brand reputation and user confidence by eliminating user confusion and offering innovative ways for customers to interact with Sky; and
• prevent potential abuses in the registration process reducing overall costs to businesses and users.

Sky will be able to create relevant domain names for use including product, service or geographic names in the second or third level domain names. In accordance with registration policies and the proposed measures for protection of geographic names as outlined in response to question 22, Sky will use geographic names to localise its websites in countries in which Sky operates. The use of geographic names is intended to:
• connect internet users with relevant information as applicable to the territory; and
• comply with required rules and regulations in the national territory.

Sky may also utilise IDNs at the second level domain names in different languages which may include German, Spanish, Arabic, Chinese, French, Hindi, Dutch, Italian, Japanese, Portuguese and Korean. The use of IDNs will allow internet users to engage with .sky in their native language thereby creating a more positive user experience and encouraging diversity. As the use of the .sky gTLD evolves, there may be increased use of other IDNs within the .sky domain space.

Further, the .sky gTLD is also intended to address the potential malicious abuse and user confusion in the registration processes of the current domain name system, even though currently an eligible party may lodge a claim against such abuses through existing Uniform Domain Name Dispute Resolution Policy (UDRP) or other dispute resolution processes. The .sky gTLD aims to overcome and prevent any potential abuses in the registration processes thus reducing overall costs to internet users.

Eliminating user confusion and the potential for malicious abuse will strengthen user confidence in the domain name system, which will ultimately contribute towards promoting ICANN’s core values of benefiting the public interest.

18(b)iv. Provide a complete description of the applicantʹs intended registration policies in support of the goals listed above.

The proposed registration policy for the .sky gTLD is outlined in our response to question 28.

As the .sky gTLD will be restricted, registrations for domain names will only be available to Sky and⁄or its authorised affiliate entities for use by affiliate entities and licensees of Sky IPI initially in support of its mission and purpose. Any expansion of the registration process will involve significant evaluation and consideration of Sky IPI’s obligations and compliance with all ICANN’s operational, technical and policy requirements. Sky IPI will keep ICANN reasonably informed of any material developments relating to the .sky gTLD.
In addition, the domain name registration processes for the .sky gTLD will address all requirements mandated by ICANN, including but not limited to the rights abuse prevention measures including the Trademark Clearinghouse.

18(b)v. Will your proposed gTLD impose any measures for protecting the privacy or confidential information of registrants or users? If so, please describe any such measures.

Sky IPI is committed to protecting privacy and confidential information in accordance with the mission and purpose of its .sky gTLD thereby fostering increased consumer trust by providing a safe and legitimate internet space for internet users. Sky has a strong focus on ensuring that customers can use Sky products with minimum risk and as such, manages customer privacy and data protection by implementing rigorous policies with clear lines of accountability. Sky IPI endeavours to ensure that user privacy and confidential information under the .sky gTLD are protected pursuant to all applicable laws and regulations relating to internet security, privacy and user confidential information including all relevant industry requirements and standards such as the Data Protection Act 1998 (UK), the Privacy and Electronic Communications Regulation 2003 (UK) and the Data Protection Acts 1988 and 2003 (Republic of Ireland).

Sky already has its own data protection policies covering the collection, use and retention of personal data, complimented by computer security, physical security and data breach policies which cover personal as well as confidential information. These policies are managed through Sky’s Data Governance Committee and this serves to demonstrate Sky’s commitment to the protection of user privacy and confidential information. Furthermore, Sky has an established abuse management function for its sky.com domains which is run by Sky’s internal IT department, SNS (Sky Network Services).

As use of the .sky gTLD will only be available to Sky group companies and licensees of Sky initially, the amount of personal data that will be collected for the purposes of operating the .sky gTLD and made publicly available in the WHOIS database will be very limited. Sky IPI will provide a publicly available and searchable WHOIS look up facility, where information about the domain name status and registrant information (including administrative and technical contact details) can be found in accordance with Specification 4 of the Registry Agreement. In order to prevent misuse of the WHOIS look up facility, Sky IPI will utilise various measures including a requirement that any person submitting a WHOIS database query is required to read and agree to various terms and conditions in accordance with the registration policy. One of the terms of use will be that the WHOIS database is provided for information purposes only and that the user agrees not to use the information for any other purposes such as allowing or enabling the transmission of unsolicited commercial advertising or other communication.

Sky IPI will protect private and confidential information by deploying Domain Name System Security Extensions (DNSSEC) which are intended to benefit both Sky IPI and users interacting with Sky online. DNSSEC provides additional security by validating information in the transmission. Therefore it is intended to benefit those who publish information in the domain name system (DNS) and the users who retrieve information from the new .sky gTLD. Sky already implements measures to protect the privacy and confidential information of its users against misuse, loss, alteration and unauthorised access. Such measures include technological measures and organisational measures. Technological measures include firewalls, intrusion detection and prevention, encryption, access controls, and Secure Socket Layers⁄TLS. Organisational measures include policies, training and audit.

Sky IPI will continue to apply all security measures currently implemented and will comply with all other policies and practices required by ICANN in the Registry Agreement and any relevant Consensus Policy for protecting the privacy and confidential information of registrants and users in the new .sky domain space.

18(b)vi. Describe whether and in what ways outreach and communications will help to achieve your projected benefits.

Sky intends to publicise the .sky gTLD by means which may include a media plan to promote consumer recognition of the .sky gTLD within the internet community as a trusted and authentic site. During the initial operation of the .sky gTLD, it is anticipated that internet users will be re-directed from Sky’s current websites such as sky.com to the .sky gTLD websites. However, over time through extensive promotion and consumer education of the existence and benefits of the .sky gTLD, it is hoped there will be significant uptake and use of the .sky gTLD thereby minimising the incidences of malicious abuses and protecting internet users as a result.

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