The ICANN gTLD saga continues. Last Monday the organization released the latest version of the Applicant Guidebook, plus a new website that provides still-complicated details, but in a more accessible manner (including the above video).
One important change for all potential applicants to note is that March 29, 2012 is now the deadline for registering with the TLD Application System (TAS). Registration is required before the actual application can be submitted (application period remaining 1/12/2012-4/12/2012).
While ICANN’s other revisions to the guidebook should not affect most brand owners’ plans, notable modifications include a program for the provision of financial assistance to eligible applicants, requirements for applicants to prove they have a “Continuing Operations Instrument” (i.e. financial wherewithal) to maintain the undertaking, and that Interpol has been enlisted to conduct background checks on all applicants.
With only 101 days to go (and counting), anyone contemplating applying for their own domain extension needs to make a decision now. So, for guidance on the subject, read here. And stay tuned for more. As suspected, ICANN reserves the right to amend the Guidebook again—even after the application period has begun.