VeriSign Amends ICANN Suit

By Matthew Hicks  |  Posted 2004-06-16 Print this article Print

Following a judge's earlier dismissal of the lawsuit's antitrust claim, VeriSign makes changes in order to move the case forward in federal court.

VeriSign has filed an amended complaint in its lawsuit against the Internets main domain-name oversight body. The Mountain View, Calif., company on Monday refiled the suit after the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers won an early round in the case during a May hearing in U.S. District Court in Los Angeles. A federal judge during that hearing dismissed the cases main antitrust claim but left VeriSign Inc. with the opportunity to amend its lawsuit. VeriSign is challenging ICANNs authority, accusing the Marina del Rey, Calif., nonprofit of overstepping its bounds as a technical body to become a regulator of the Internet.
The judge now must decide whether to reinstate the claim, which was one of six ICANN had asked to be dismissed. If the claim is not reinstated, VeriSign could be forced to move the lawsuit to state court since the other claims are largely issues of state law, legal experts have said.
"VeriSign filed an amended complaint at the judges request to provide additional details on the antitrust claims," company spokesman Tom Galvin said. "For VeriSign, the intent of the suit remains the same as when we initially filed it in February—to get clarity around ICANNs role and the process for the introduction of new services." Click here to read more about the original filing. ICANN officials could not be immediately reached to comment on the latest filing, but the nonprofit said in previous statements that it is "disappointed that VeriSign has again chosen confrontation over consensus" by filing a lawsuit. The legal clash stems from VeriSigns desire to introduce a range of new services as the registry of the .com and .net domains. In particular, the company butted heads with ICANN last year when it launched SiteFinder, an attempt to redirect users who misspelled Web domain names to its own search site. VeriSign suspended the service following demands from ICANN to shutter it. In its lawsuit, VeriSign is seeking a temporary and permanent injunction to prevent ICANN from interfering with any reintroduction of SiteFinder or the launch of other services. Check out eWEEK.coms Developer & Web Services Center at for the latest news, reviews and analysis in programming environments and developer tools.

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Matthew Hicks As an online reporter for, Matt Hicks covers the fast-changing developments in Internet technologies. His coverage includes the growing field of Web conferencing software and services. With eight years as a business and technology journalist, Matt has gained insight into the market strategies of IT vendors as well as the needs of enterprise IT managers. He joined Ziff Davis in 1999 as a staff writer for the former Strategies section of eWEEK, where he wrote in-depth features about corporate strategies for e-business and enterprise software. In 2002, he moved to the News department at the magazine as a senior writer specializing in coverage of database software and enterprise networking. Later that year Matt started a yearlong fellowship in Washington, DC, after being awarded an American Political Science Association Congressional Fellowship for Journalist. As a fellow, he spent nine months working on policy issues, including technology policy, in for a Member of the U.S. House of Representatives. He rejoined Ziff Davis in August 2003 as a reporter dedicated to online coverage for Along with Web conferencing, he follows search engines, Web browsers, speech technology and the Internet domain-naming system.

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