InternetNZ invites comment on domain name dispute resolution

New Zealand

InternetNZ has invited public submissions on its October 2001 paper regarding ways to resolve disputes involving '.nz' domain names. The paper was prepared in response to comments in the Shared Registry System Working Group's report that suggested a dispute resolution procedure might be necessary to protect registrants under the new system.

InternetNZ's paper sets out the following options:

  • maintaining the status quo, namely private inter-party negotiation, arbitration and/or recourse to the New Zealand courts;

  • conducting facilitated mediation, whereby a registrant agrees to resolve a dispute according to a procedure specified by the '.nz' manager;

  • appointing an internet commissioner to investigate and mediate disputes;

  • appointing an internet ombudsman to consider and settle complaints at no cost to the complainant;

  • implementing a local dispute resolution procedure, possibly using the Uniform Domain Name Dispute Resolution Policy (UDRP) as a starting point; or

  • adopting a non-local dispute resolution procedure such as the UDRP.

In order to facilitate the discussion process, the working group has proposed the following criteria be applied to each option:

  • the likelihood that decisions will adhere to New Zealand legal principles and be consistent with other jurisdictional models;

  • the transparency of the decisions, and how easy it would be to monitor those involved in the decision-making process;

  • the consistency and finality of decisions, and their usefulness to set legal precedents; and

  • the speed and cost of the process.

For discussion of various dispute resolution policies, see Domain name dispute resolution policies compared).

Ian Finch, James & Wells, Auckland

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