The Independent Objector's Comments on Controversial Applications
When assessing whether an objection should be filed against an application for a new gTLD, the Independent Objector (IO) pays a particular attention to public comments. Some of the applications have already given rise to numerous comments on the public comments webpage of ICANN.
It should be noted that it does not necessarily imply that the IO, being an independent decision maker in determining which applications merit objection, will file an objection against those applications. The IO is impartial and will strive to disregard his moral positions and personal beliefs. He only acts in the interests of Internet users and has the possibility to file objections on the community and limited public interest grounds. He will only do so within the scope and limits of his attributions whenever he considers that an application is against the interests of global Internet users or against the interests or values of a delineated community. In both cases, the IO will only intervene if no objections have already been filed on the same grounds.
To ensure transparency, the IO deems it appropriate to issue public comments on applications which can be seen as controversial. Such comments aim at addressing public concerns, informing them of the reason why the IO might lodge an objection or does not intend to do so. However, comments informing of the possibility of an objection by the IO will only be made publicly available after the concerned applicants will have been given an opportunity to react.
Comments will provide the public with a precise explanation of the IO position on specific applications, including a brief summary of and reactions to the targeted relevant comments. In all cases, those comments are still preliminary and do not prejudge the IO's final decision to file an objection against the application or not.