ICANN has announced that they have selected Deloitte and IBM on implementation of Trademark Clearinghouse services for new gTLDs.
The Trademark Clearinghouse is brand protection mechanism. As proposed by ICANN, the Trademark Clearinghouse is intended to function as an information repository and offer authentication and validation services for trademark data. The Clearinghouse will serve as a single database of authenticated registered trademarks and will eliminate the need for trademark holders to register their marks in many databases as new gTLDs are launched. ICANN will require that every new gTLD operator utilize the Clearinghouse and conduct both a Trademark Claims and a Sunrise Process Trademark holders and registry operators of new gTLDs are expected to use on the Trademark Clearinghouse to support rights protection mechanisms for the new gTLD system.
In addition, a new applicant guidebook was released. A summary of the changes can be found at http://newgtlds.icann.org/en/applicants/agb/summary-changes-applicant-guidebook-04jun12-en.pdf [PDF, 121 KB]. The summary provides the text revisions in redline, as well as a description and rationale for the changes.