What do Governance Councils do?

In order to preserve the integrity and independence of each Governance Council, each Governance Council Board of Directors shall operate under a self-governance model. Supported by an independent management company, which exists to facilitate meetings and provide assistance, the Board remains free to conduct itself as it sees fit, subject to its bylaws.

Governance Councils aim to represent all stakeholders within the generic TLD communities. They do not dictate which domains may exist in a TLD, nor which content shall be deemed permissible. However, they do monitor, advise, and recommend best practices in the following areas:

  • Abuse Prevention and Mitigation (APM) Seal Reporting System – An APM reporting website contains a clear description and instructions that provide guidance on how to report infringement. The Governance Council Board may wish to liaise with relevant international governmental organizations, or to advise on including the relevant industry bodies' reporting systems, or on other reporting and mitigation functions
  • Intellectual Property Rights Protection – The Board may recommend adequate mechanisms to protect intellectual property
  • Best Practices – The Board shall discuss, identify, and recommend best practices, including but not limited to dispute resolution or definition of industry terms and categories
  • TLD Rules – The Board may recommend rules, limitations, or added value propositions for its TLD
  • Reserved Domains – The Board may recommend reservation of certain second-level domains for various industry purposes
  • Certification or Authentication – The Board may recommend the creation of certification programs or authentication procedures that allow its gTLD to officially sanction or approve of certain activities or content
  • Adhere to ICANN Rules and Governance Council Bylaws – It is important to note that all Governance Council and Board activity is subject to the operating guidelines agreed with ICANN and the Governance Council's own bylaws

Governance Councils elect their Board representatives. It is expected that the Board will establish feedback and communication mechanisms so as to receive ongoing input from the broader Governance Council to accomplish the objectives above. By performing these industry-critical tasks, Governance Councils help to ensure the integrity of the Internet and its key stakeholders.

Want to get involved in a generic TLD’s Governance Council? See the next section, How do I get involved?