ICANN .IR Response, IANA Functions Minefield Revealed

Kudos to Philip Corwin for the best and most insightful analysis thus far of the ICANN .IR response (at link below, excerpts follow):

ICANN’s .IR Response Opens Legal Can of Worms - InternetCommerce.org: ".... At the top of page 18 (p. 28 of the Ben Haim vs. Islamic Republic of Iran pdf), the memo makes the argument that, under the Foreign Sovereign Immunities Act (FSIA), Plaintiffs must show that the “property in the United States of a foreign state” is “used for a commercial activity in the United States”. While .IR and the other ccTLDs at issue have no commercial contacts in the U.S., this is not true for .CO and other ccTLDs that have been repurposed as quasi-gTLDs and are being administered by entities located within the U.S..... At p.20 (p.30 of the pdf) of the memo, it is noted that ICANN’s authority is limited to recommending a transfer of the ccTLD to the Department of Commerce (DOC) under the current IANA contract; that under that contract ICANN may only recommend re-delegation for narrow technical and ministerial reasons; and that DOC retains the ultimate authority on the matter... However, this argument immediately raises the question of what the situation will be for ccTLDs will be after the IANA transition, when DOC no longer possesses final authority on TLD re-delegations and when there may be no contract at all in place governing the conduct of the IANA functions. Ironically, terminating the IANA contract between DOC and ICANN may place ccTLDs at greater risk of being re-delegated pursuant to the judicial orders of U.S. courts because this fallback contractual argument will no longer be available!... while ICANN has done its best to quash the writs of attachment for the ccTLDs in question, its arguments raise multiple other questions and issues...." (read more at the link above, emphasis added)

They never thought about any of this in Washington at NTIA or at ICANN before the rushed IANA announcement--and of course this is just par for the course for ICANN which really doesn't think through much of anything--the disastrous new gTLDs being a prime example!

more info on the .IR case:


For background reading (2002):  von Arx and Hagen, Volume IX Issue 1, Richmond Journal of Law & Technology: SOVEREIGN DOMAINS - A Declaration of Independence of ccTLDs from Foreign Control


ICANN, ccTLDs, the IANA Problem (video)

ICG Interview: Martin Boyle (ccNSO) - (video below)

Martin Boyle discusses his representation of the Country Code Names Supporting Organization (ccNSO) on the IANA Stewardship Transition Coordination Group (ICG) during the group’s first meeting in London, 17-18 July 2014. -- (published by ICANN July 25, 2014)

RFC 1591 - Domain Name System Structure and Delegation: " In the Domain Name System (DNS) naming of computers there is a hierarchy of names. The root of system is unnamed. There are a set of what are called "top-level domain names" (TLDs). These are the generic TLDs (EDU, COM, NET, ORG, GOV, MIL, and INT), and the two letter country codes from ISO-3166. It is extremely unlikely that any other TLDs will be created.... The IANA is not in the business of deciding what is and what is not a country. The selection of the ISO 3166 list as a basis for country code top-level domain names was made with the knowledge that ISO has a procedure for determining which entities should be and should not be on that list...." -- Jon Postel, March 1994

In a nutshell here's the problem: ccTLDs (country code Top-Level Domains), the country code domain system, was created in the early days of the Domain Name System, and pre-dates ICANN. Each national government manages and establishes policy for its own ccTLD. Other than ICANN performing its limited clerical IANA role under its agreement with the US government, ccTLDs have no relationship with ICANN except to the extent that some, but not all, ccTLDs have entered into agreements with ICANN. The ccNSO or Country Code Names Supporting Organisation is a body within the ICANN structure created for ccTLD managers but not all ccTLDs are members of the ccNSO. However, now that the US government has announced its intention to transition all of its oversight over the IANA functions, and the ICG was established by ICANN, somehow ccTLDs who are not members of ccNSO have no representation on the ICG. How's that for inclusivity of the global multi-stakeholder community?


FCC Net Neutrality Issues Expose Divisions Over Future of the Internet

Those interested in ICANN accountability, take note --

FCC Chairman Wheeler initially thought almost everyone wanted fast lane/slow lane internet service (or at least that's what the big money lobbyists on K Street told the FCC) -- instead the FCC has gotten an earful (see below)--too bad ICANN didn't follow FCC protocols before launching its new gTLDs program--

FCC Net Neutrality Comments (via Politico) - "... One key factor: the controversial proposed rules have touched a very intimate and personal nerve for Web users across the country, raising the political temperature at the FCC on this issue. It's also exposed deep industry divisions over the future of the Internet. .. Companies from Netflix to Etsy agree that nothing could be more detrimental to their business than rules that force them to pay more for distribution, urging the agency to use all the available tools to prohibit fast lanes.'..."

Where from here? Title II rules and oversight seem a real possibility now with an overwhelming majority of consumers (i.e. voting public) and content creators and providers (Netflix, Etsy, et al) against "paid" fast lanes.

Note to ICANN: Watch the FCC -- this is what functional governance looks like. But I guess if you are ICANN, a California corporation accountable to no one but its own self-selected board of directors, you don't have to listen to anyone--except, perhaps, a few well-resourced, powerful stakeholders. That's why they love the term "multistakeholderism" -- it sounds so good and inclusive -- but it's just another trick that allows insiders and special interests to call the shots.


Interactive World Map of Sunrise Tweets

Sunrise around the world (via Twiiter)- Geotagged Tweets mentioning 'sunrise' in different languages, April 6, 2014, GMT


The Internet: Who runs it, What is it, Where is it?

Vox has some great articles and series about the Internet and related topics:

Who runs the internet? - Everything you need to know about the internet - Vox: Who runs the internet?
"No one runs the internet. It’s organized as a decentralized network of networks. Thousands of companies, universities, governments, and other entities operate their own networks and exchange traffic with each other based on voluntary interconnection agreements.The shared technical standards that make the internet work are managed by an organization called the Internet Engineering Task Force. The IETF is an open organization; anyone is free to attend meetings, propose new standards, and recommend changes to existing standards. No one is required to adopt standards endorsed by the IETF, but the IETF’s consensus-based decision-making process helps to ensure that its recommendations are generally adopted by the internet community. The Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) is sometimes described as being responsible for internet governance. As its name implies, ICANN is in charge of distributing domain names (like vox.com) and IP addresses. But ICANN doesn’t control who can connect to the internet or what kind of information can be sent over it." (read more at link above)


IANA Transition a Waste of Time, Decision Has Already Been Made

Dear (name withheld):
I just read your email and attachment dated July 23, 2014. Unfortunately the goal of NETmundial (which you refer to) that the transition of the IANA stewardship “take place through an open process with the participation of all stakeholders extending beyond the ICANN community” has already been subverted. This is now a closed ICANN-centric process essentially comprised of just 3 groups of "insiders" who will ultimately come up with a plan to transition everything to ICANN--in fact Vint Cerf and Google have already started a big PR campaign with video wherein Vint states "NTIA has presented a plan to end this contractual oversight and hand that responsibility over to ICANN" and Larry Strickling of NTIA has now "moved the goalposts" in his speech 3 days ago when he said "Now that ICANN has demonstrated its ability to perform these functions with the support of the community, there is no longer a need for the United States to designate ICANN to perform these functions and we are not obligated to maintain a contract when it is no longer needed."

In other words, Strickling is saying the role performed by the US government is no longer needed--no oversight, no accountability, no verification--nothing, nada--needed

Which begs the question, then WHY have an ICG process at all???

Is it all for show? To make everyone "feel good" that the "multistakeholder" or "internet community" agreed to this (when in reality it was decided by the US government, ICANN insiders, and special interests). As I said at the conclusion of Strickling's AEI speech: "Multistakeholderism" means that ICANN insiders, the US government, and special interests control the Internet DNS--now and in the future.

So [name withheld], if you (or anyone else) truly want something different than where this process is now headed, you might be wiser to invest your time elsewhere. Parlez-vous français?

Best regards,

John Poole
Domain Mondo


Are Vint Cerf and Google Trying to Derail the IANA Transition?

Today I received an email from Vint Cerf and Google with video below:

Vint Cerf has made a false and misleading statement in the above video @ 1:39 – 1:49 where he says "NTIA has presented a plan to end this contractual oversight and hand that responsibility over to ICANN" -- that is a LIE. NTIA has NO such plan to turn ANYTHING over to ICANN (and Vint and Google know this). -- NTIA announced "its intent to transition key Internet domain name functions to the global multistakeholder community" http://www.ntia.doc.gov/press-release/2014/ntia-announces-intent-transition-key-internet-domain-name-functions -- what role, if any, ICANN ends up playing regarding these "functions" is something yet to be determined -- that is why there is now an  IANA Stewardship Transition Coordination Group (ICG) at work to support the "global multistakeholder community" in developing a "plan" to present to the NTIA, hopefully by September, 2015. https://www.icann.org/en/system/files/files/draft-icg-statement-18jul14-en.pdf  

Vint Cerf and Google -- PLEASE stop your campaign of misinformation and allow the global multistakeholder community to work through this issue as the NTIA intended.

#ICANN #IANA #Google #vintcerf #IANAsteward


Bad Domain Name Strategy, Good Domain Name Strategy

The difference between good domain name strategy and bad? Here are two examples:

Most of us remember the overstock.com to o.co disaster--

Overstock Abandons O.co - Overstock.com, Inc. (NASDAQ:OSTK) | Seeking Alpha: "Nov. 14, 2011...
The O.co disaster takes the cake. First the company announced on July 20 that it bought the domain name for a whopping $350,000 of its scarce cash. As Ad Age pointed out, the company "began an aggressive run of TV commercials that declared, 'Overstock.com is now O.co'" at about that time. And now, barely four months later, it's all over. A flop.It was irretrievably dumb. Customers went to "O.com" instead of O.co, and were so confused that it was pointed out at the company's conference call a couple of weeks ago that the changeover had contributed to a decline in revenues...."

Now for an example of good domain name strategy - TheBitcoinNews.co.uk acquires Domain Name “TheBitcoinNews.com” for global market--

We Have Acquired the Domain Name “TheBitcoinNews.com” | The Bitcoin News - Decentralised Bitcoin and Crypto News: "The new domain will be very soon routed and TheBitcoinNews.co.uk is then available for International users via http://TheBitcoinNews.com"

For the drill down on domain name strategy and more, read: The Bull Market in Dot Com Domain Names Has Just Begun.


Internet Governance Forum Replay, Tweets

On Tuesday, July 22, 2014, Steve Crocker, Chairman of the ICANN Board of Directors, and  Larry Strickling of the US Department of Commerce NTIA, appeared with others at an Internet Governance Forum at the AEI -- Live Video Replay here -- and my "live tweets" during the event are embedded below.
Domain Mondo retweet:

Real Innovation and Failure by John Oringer of Shutterstock.com (video)

Jon Oringer's Columbia Class Day Speech from Shutterstock on Vimeo.
Shutterstock founder and CEO Jon Oringer delivers the 2014 keynote speech at the Columbia University School of Engineering and Applied Science graduation, advising students to dream big, but expect to grow from failures along the way. "If you want to create value of tremendous magnitude, you have to learn to live with — and to love — the process of failing." 

This is the "real deal" -- nothing like, for instance, the cheap words thrown out by overpaid ICANN staffers or hucksters that new gTLDs are somehow, in and of themselves, "innovation," and yet wouldn't know real innovation if it hit them in the face --

Shutterstock CEO Jon Oringer's Message to the Next Generation: 'Embrace Failure' — The Shutterstock Blog"... Even though I was nearly broke, I was living my dream of building things. But I wanted to build something lasting, something of value. So I knew what I had to do: Double down on failure. Actually, I decided to quadruple down on failure by starting four new businesses at the same time ... What does this require? The courage to experiment, knowing that you’ll probably — no, you’ll definitely — fail. If you’re not, you’re not taking big enough risks. If every annoyance is an opportunity, then every failure is a lesson, and a chance to test another hypothesis. People talk about drive as though it’s an aspirational, lofty state. It’s not. It’s about gritty persistence. It’s about resilience — when you’re tired, when it sucks, when nothing is working. It’s about doing the un-fun things: Checking and rechecking code. Spending hours in the lab. Staying in and fixing bugs when all of your friends are out having a good time. Drive is being lost, confused, overwhelmed — but picking yourself up, dusting yourself off, and trying all over again. I’m not going to sugarcoat it: Building is hard, failing can be deeply painful, and the reality is some people aren’t willing to pay that price. But if you are, then, take it from me, the sky is the limit."


ICANN suspends Brandon Gray Internet Services, better late than never?

The Register has reported that ICANN has temporarily suspended domain name registrar Brandon Gray Internet Services Inc., after receiving the first complaints about its operations more than ten years ago -- better late than never? -- read more at: Brandon Gray aka Namejuice suspended by ICANN • The Register 

The conduct which The Register is reporting falls within what is commonly known as domain slamming.

The ICANN suspension notice (pdf) reads in part:

INITIATE INBOUND TRANSFERS OF REGISTERED NAMES... This notice is sent to BRANDON GRAY INTERNET SERVICES INC. (dba "NameJuice.com") (“Brandon Gray”) further to its Registrar Accreditation Agreement (“RAA”) with the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (“ICANN”) dated 12 February 2014 (“RAA”). Pursuant to Section 5.5.6 of the RAA, Brandon Gray has been in fundamental and material breach of its obligations under the RAA at least three (3) times within a twelve (12) month period; on 16 December 2013, 19 March 2014, and 18 July 2014. Brandon Gray’s ability to create new Registered Names or initiate inbound transfers of Registered Names is suspended for 90 days pursuant to Section 5.7 of the RAA...."


Vint Cerf on the Colbert Report (video)

Vint Cerf - Parts 1 and 2 - The Colbert Report - Video Clips | Comedy Central: July 15, 2014

Vint Cerf meets Stephen Colbert LOL!


IANA Stewardship Transition Coordination Group meeting, my comments

My "chat comments" (and related chat comments) from the IANA Coordination Group (ICG) [a/k/a IANA Stewardship Transition Coordination Group] First Meeting in London this past week:

From the July 17, 2014 transcript:

John Poole: Every user of the internet is affected by IANA -- why are they limiting this to certain "communities?"

John Poole: IANA transition should not be dependent upon ICANN accountability -- ICANN may never be accountable and others have proposals to reform or replace ICANN. If you make the IANA process
dependent on the outcome of the ICANN accountability process--moving away from US government oversight may take years, if ever

John Poole: wrong to say "presumably IANA becomes part of ICANN" when proposals have already been made to separate IANA from ICANN

Keith Drazek, gTLD Registries [ICG member]: @JohnPoole, yes, I shouldn't have used the word "presumably;" I should have said "If one were to assume..." in the context of the current discussion. I was simply trying to illuminate that there are differences between the name/number/protocol strucures today that need to be understood moving forward. Apologies

John Poole: @KeithDrazek - gTLD Registries: thank you for your acknowledgment and correction

John Poole: Good that Milton [Milton Mueller - ICG member] caught the error being "pushed" that tries to "force" ICANN into NTIA role

John Poole: Good to hear at least some CG members are mindful and open to receiving proposals from other than "insider" groups -- wasn't this supposed to be an inclusive process for all including those outside of ICANN?

John Poole: That's a big assumption that everyone in the world can get access into 1 of only 4 [now just 3] groups!

John Poole: It is obvious that there are stakeholders who are not represented on the CG -- just acknowledge that fact and commit to an open and transparent process for everyone

Keith Drazek, gTLD Registries: In the spirit of bottom-up, consensus-based multistakeholderism,
the process must be open and transparent for anyone who wants to contribute. What stakeholders are not already represented or who don't have the opportunity to participate in an exististing strucure?

John Poole: @Keith -- exactly --"Represented" is different from "opportunity to participate"

Mohamed El Bashir [ICG member]: Although At-Large community, which I represent in ICG, is less geographical representative, but being politically sensitive and ensure that acceptance of the future outcomes of our work, I am supporting adding extra 3 GAC members.Participated WICT conference, There is a lots wrong perceptions regarding the ICANN Role/NTIA stewardship role especially in the developing world, GAC can create awareness among governments and ensure regional Internet government organizations ( e.g African Union, Arab League, ..etc ) are involved and are engaged in the process.

John Poole: @Mohamed agree

Bill Drake: I don't want to be in Istanbul listening to governments saying that they were locked out of the process and its outcome will be illegitimate

Bill Drake: and I especially don't want to hear them saying that at the ITU Plenipotentiary

John Poole: @Bill +1

More info on the ICG meeting here.

How We Understand the World via the Internet

world map of Geographic Knowledge in Freebase
click on map to enlarge

"This map shows the global distribution of geo-located entities described in Freebase, a collaborative knowledge base that defines itself as “an open shared database of the world’s knowledge”. Freebase forms one of the key informational ingredients in Google’s Knowledge Graph. If you’ve ever looked at the side panel in Google’s search results page, which presents information about people, places, and events in response to a search query, then you’ve probably come into contact with data stored in Freebase.... Geographic content in Freebase is largely clustered in certain regions of the world. The United States accounts for over 45% of the overall number of place names in the collection, despite covering about 2% of the Earth, less than 7% of the land surface, and less than 5% of the world population, and about 10% of Internet users. This results in a US density of one Freebase place name for every 1500 people, and far more place names referring to Massachusetts than referring to China. A third of all place names are geo-located in Europe.... This stands in contrast to countries like China that account for less than 1% of the collection (with less than 4000 place names, and a density of only one place name for every 300,000 inhabitants). Most of Africa, Asia, Latin America and the Caribbean are similarly underrepresented... Outside Europe and North America, only four countries (Australia, China, India, and Japan) are represented with more content than Antarctica (in part because the database contains descriptions of hundreds of Antarctic mountains and ranges).... Because Freebase is a core ingredient in the informational menu presented to us by the world’s most widely used search engine, these presences and absences have the potential to have a significant impact on how we understand, interact with, and create our world. Freebase may seem like a small corner of the Web, but the imbalances that we observe in it can have large reverberations through the broader information ecosystems accessed by billions of people."

Source: Oxford Internet Institute, University of Oxford, England (UK)


New gTLD domain name extensions -- where are all the suckers - err - buyers?

graphic of Google Trends charts for "domain extension" "gtld" ".com" ".net" ".xyz"
Google Trends charts for "domain extension" "gtld" ".com" ".net" ".xyz"

Google Trends - Web Search interest: domain extension, gtld, .com, .net, .xyz - Worldwide, Past 12 months".xyz wasn't searched for often enough to appear on the chart." [date of charts: 16 July 2014]

The bottom chart above puts everything into perspective -- apparently almost no one is interested in the new gTLD domain name extensions (beyond cybersquatters, speculators, and defensive trademark holders). And of course we also have the data.

It's all just as the Domain King predicted, and now the angst and excuses have begun -- just two examples of many --

Why Most Startups Haven’t Heard Of “The New gTLDs” -- here you get one domainer blogger's take on why the new gTLD domain name extensions are failing with the startup crowd -- plus an anecdotal survey of 20 of his fellow classmates from which he concludes if only we used proper terminology -- don't call them “new gTLDs” but instead refer to them as “new domain name extensions.”  Hence the title of this blog post so the darlings at Techstars won't think I am "speaking in riddles." Then I did a little research beyond just 20 people in Austin and the results (see above) are not encouraging no matter what you call them.

Then we have the Dean of domainer blogging who asks Will new TLDs get a second wind? [When did they ever have a first wind?] "Most new top level domain names are struggling to break even the 10,000 domain name barrier. Many applicants tell me they aren’t worried; it’s the long game...."  To which I can only quote the esteemed economist John Maynard Keynes:
"But this long run is a misleading guide to current affairs. In the long run we are all dead."
photograph of John Maynard Keynes
John Maynard Keynes (1883-1946)


Fred Wilson, Investing, Crowded Trades, new gTLD Domain Names

As I've said before, only morons think increasing supply increases demand [or prices] --

A Dozen Things I’ve Learned from Fred Wilson | 25iq: "... “Don’t do the obvious thing.” As Will Rogers put even more simply: “Always drink upstream from the herd.” Trying to find positive optionality in areas where others are intensely focused is what investors call a crowded trade (i.e., too many people trying to do the same thing). You can’t do better than a mob if you are part of the mob."..."

So where is the mob today? New gTLD domain names? Are you part of the mob trying to find positive optionality in a crowded trade?

Caveat Emptor -- be mindful of the data -- and remember that drops in new gTLD domain names do not begin until 2015 (first renewals or drops).


ICANN and Internet Governance, French Senate Report Proposals

The [French] Senate wants to democratize Internet governance: "... a new model of Internet governance, respectful of human rights and freedoms and able to restore confidence in the Internet, shaken by voluntary diminution of online security and malfunctions of ICANN... " For further information and analysis with more links to the French Senate report go to: French Proposal to Reform "Malfunctioning" ICANN and Internet Governance.

The full list of proposals in the French Senate Report (July 9, 2014) on reforming ICANN and internet governance are below.

Europe to the rescue of the Internet: democratize the governance of the Internet -- French Senate Report full list of proposals --


A. Rebuilding internet governance around a treaty ensuring respect for human rights and democratic values ​​online
- Invite Member States of the European Union to agree to propose the principles of consecration NETmundial São Paulo, both by international treaty open to all States and ratification by a form of online users ( No. 1)

B. Build a network global, legitimate and accountable governance fora
1. Globalizing Internet governance on the basis of the principles of NETmundial
- Base of Internet governance on a network transparent relationships by formalizing the roles and interactions between ICANN, the registries, the W3C, IETF, IAB, ITU, managers root servers, operators of domain names first level ... (2)
- Transform the Internet Governance Forum into the World Council of the Internet, with its own funding and to oversee compliance decisions governance fora NETmundial the principles identified in Sao Paulo (3)
- Welcome in Europe the celebration of ten years of the World Summit for the Information Society in 2015 to promote this new global architecture of the Internet Governance (No. 4)

2. Rebuilding ICANN to restore confidence in the system of domain names
- Rebuild ICANN into a WICANN (World ICANN), international law or, preferably, under Swiss law modeled on the International Committee of the Red Cross, and organize international supervision of the root file domain names substitution of the American supervision (No. 5)
- Make WICANN responsible to the World Council of Internet or, alternatively, to an internal General Meeting and to the Board or meeting the authority to approve appointments to the Board of Directors and WICANN accounts this organism (6)
- Establish a mechanism for independent and accessible remedies for review of a decision of the WICANN or repair (7)
- Establish a functional separation between WICANN and operational functions IANA to distinguish those who develop naming domain who individually assign domain names (8) policies
- Define the independence criteria for the majority of members of the board of WICANN (No. 9)
- Require first of all that the steering group provided by ICANN to organize the transition is composed of members appointed by the ICANN stakeholders in a transparent and democratic manner and also includes representatives of other stakeholders not represented today ICANN (No. 10)

A. An aggressive regulation of the European digital ecosystem for better distribution of value
1. Realising ambition of net neutrality ...
- Before the European Commission to submit without delay a legislative proposal to regulate content providers and application, so that neutrality applies not only to networks but also to services (11)
2 .... impose a strong control competition and taxation
- Urging the European Commission to improve the procedures in competition policy and make them more responsive to abuse of dominant position (No 12)
- Ask the Commission to establish a principle of separation to avoid vertical integration of Internet players controlling more and more layers of the value chain (No. 13)
- Encourage other Member States affected by tax optimization multinationals digital practice with our country continued pressure on Member States complicit in this situation (14)
- Support the outcome of the ongoing tax reforms in VAT and corporation tax, to better help service providers online for public office of European States (No. 15)
3 .... and complemented by new ways to experience the European culture on the Internet
- Encourage professional associations of the cultural sector to approach between Member States to enforce their rights being united against the "over the top" (No. 16)
- Align VAT rates for cultural goods and services digital and physical (17)
- Incorporate a new dimension in European political culture, enhancing the creativity of users and non-commercial sharing of content (No. 18)
B. A demanding and realistic data protection regime in the era of cloud and big data
1. Supporting the validity of the European approach based on the assertion of a fundamental right to protection of personal data
- Promoting privacy by design and privacy by default by European and international labels (19)
2. Consolidate by modernizing the EU legal framework for data protection
- Adopt as quickly as possible the proposed European regulation on the protection of individuals with regard to the processing of personal data (No. 20)
- Strengthen procedural safeguards surrounding the treatment of particularly sensitive data by the obligation to provide impact assessments of privacy (21)
- Establish a liability regime responsible for data processing to both sides:
· Upstream of the collection, create an obligation to study the impact on privacy to reduce the risk to users,
· Downstream, creating an obligation to report irregularities in the processing of data (No. 22)
3. Promote this approach to international
- Renegotiate the Safe Harbor by keeping the possibility to suspend if the requirements of the European authorities were not heard and keep this separate negotiation that of transatlantic treaty (No. 23)
- Adopt the provision introduced by the European Parliament in the proposed regulation governing the transfer or disclosure of personal data to request administrative or judicial authorities of third countries (No. 24)
- Continue negotiations for the accession of the EU to the Convention 108 to the legitimacy of the Union to ask the United States to join as well (No. 25)
C. Building a European industrial strategy to control our data and carry our values
1. Catalyze the digital industry around a European ambition
- Reorient the national system of export support on support for R & D and innovation for SMEs and ETI digital sector (No. 26)
- The emergence, at the initiative of France and Germany, a genuine European policy in the digital industry defining the investment fields in the medium and long term, and mobilizing the instruments to achieve them (No. 27 )
- Encourage the European Commission to reconcile the European competition rules in the digital sector with ambition industrial power favoring the emergence of "European champions" (No. 28)
- Better support for very small and ETI French and European digital sector by promoting at national and European level, cooperation between them and reinforcing their access to financing solutions (strengthening of venture capital, facilitating their IPO ...) (No. 29)
- Greater use of instruments to facilitate the establishment of clusters in the European sector of the Internet and digital (No. 30)
- Obtain the explicit recognition by the United States system of geographical indications before the introduction of domain names referring to such information (31)
- Ensure match any liberalization of the transatlantic movement of such data, exceptions justified by the objective of protecting the privacy of individuals and public safety (No. 32)
- Encourage the European Commission to ensure regulatory convergence ensuring a level playing field (level playing field) for European digital companies, particularly with regard to the supervision of state aid (33)
- Promote greater reciprocity in access to public markets, to open markets to European companies in third countries (34)
2. Exploiting European data in the service of "common good"
- Promoting big data as a real industrial challenge, source of improvement of the common good, precisely defining reasonable for data aggregation mechanisms may be an economic recovery (35)
- Further development of open data in all jurisdictions issued by standardizing data and tending to free their provision, while respecting the principles of anonymity and non-discrimination (n ° 36 )
3. Lancer two specific industrial projects secure European cloud but open to the most sensitive data and operating system for mobile
- Promote the development of an operating system on European mobile constituting a credible alternative to currently existing major operating systems (37)
- Define a class of services labeled " Secure cloud "subject to strict specifications and protective fillers and promote a European actor competent to issue the relevant safety certificates (No. 38)
- Better integration solutions cloud in public procurement and implement space services cloud to secure government (No. 39)
4. Exploit European strengths in Internet security
- Develop European expertise in encryption, including facilitating the use of certificates (No. 40)
- Seek to promote and (41) "en." "Had."
Prepare the place of Europe in the future Internet 5.
- Ensure the preservation of the European principle of non-patentability of software (42)
- Encouraging the development of free software by integrating them into the public markets and the imposition of open standards, provided to develop the skills to use the software and standards (43)
- Consolidate at industrial objectives Service, the presence of the EU in major international standardization bodies of the Internet and develop the work of the specifically European organizations in this area (44)
- Ensure the establishment of a European standardization system connected objects to facilitate their mutual recognition, interconnection and security against external attacks (No. 45)
- Strengthen the European presence in the structures of standardization of industrial technologies using the Internet (smart grids, digital identity ...) and make a real economic issue (No. 46)
- Preparing the Future Internet through further coordination of initiatives and support solutions emphasizing the preservation of confidentiality on the network (47)
D. Promoting citizen ownership of the internet
1. Educate citizens to digital form and freedoms programming
- Develop an ambitious digital education ensuring its place in the heart of the common core of knowledge and skills and training gradually all teachers based (No. 48)
2. Strengthen the legal framework of intelligence activities and improve the political control
- Enshrine in law that the opinion of the National Control Commission interceptions Security (CNCIS) is collected prior to the issuance of any authorization of interception security or administrative access to the data connection (# 49)
- Automatically predict CNCIS consultation prior to implementation of any technical means of gathering information services would have (No. 50)
- Explicitly extend control CNCIS the proportionality of the means used by the intelligence services to prevent drift Intelligence to mass surveillance (51)
- Create, from the CNCIS, a new independent administrative authority - the Commission of Control Intelligence - responsible for issuing permits implementation of means to collect information after reviewing their legality and proportionality (No. 52)
- Strengthen the investigative powers of the Parliamentary Delegation intelligence (DPR) by giving it a power to control rooms and on-site and providing support services Control Board Intelligence (No. 53)
- Submit to the control of the National Commission on Informatics and Liberties files intelligence (No. 54)
- Establish a European framework for controlling exchange of information between intelligence services (No. 55)
3. Structuring governance digital issues at national and European
- Set up within the Council of the European Union dedicated to digital training to overcome the administrative barriers in the service of a shared political ambition (No. 56)
- Recommend the establishment within the European Parliament special committee to examine the texts on the Internet (57)
- Create an interdepartmental committee of digital to the Prime Minister to lead a coherent overall strategy (No. 58)
- Create a committee of the Senate whose members would be digital also members of a permanent legislative committee (No. 59)
- Encouraging the creation of a European Digital Advisory Board, a real task force to inform the EU executive and unite the European ecosystem in a team spirit (No. 60)
4. Promote the European model of the Internet by a true digital diplomacy associated with industrial policy
- Develop a true doctrine of digital diplomacy with real resources, relying on a network of expertise and consultation of civil society and economic actors (61)
- Support digital diplomacy on existing instruments such as the European Neighbourhood Policy or the Francophonie to promote worldwide respect for European values ​​online (No. 62)


Words of Wisdom for Domainers from Warren Buffett

Words of wisdom for domainers from Warren Buffett:

Price is what you pay. Value is what you get.

Risk comes from not knowing what you're doing.

Honesty is a very expensive gift. Don't expect it from cheap people.

If you've been playing poker for half an hour and you still don't know who the patsy is, you're the patsy.

No matter how great the talent or efforts, some things just take time. You can't produce a baby in one month by getting nine women pregnant.

The most important thing to do if you find yourself in a hole is to stop digging.

Should you find yourself in a chronically leaking boat, energy devoted to changing vessels is likely to be more productive than energy devoted to patching leaks.

It’s better to hang out with people better than you. Pick out associates whose behavior is better than yours and you’ll drift in that direction.

I insist on a lot of time being spent, almost every day, to just sit and think. That is very uncommon in American business. I read and think. So I do more reading and thinking, and make less impulse decisions than most people in business. I do it because I like this kind of life.

The difference between successful people and very successful people is that very successful people say 'no' to almost everything. 

  – Warren Buffett


All the things ICANN failed to think about before launching new gTLDs

When ICANN decided to do internet domain name public policy based primarily on the competing private, profit-making motives of  registry applicants who could "pay to play" at the rate of $185,000 per new gTLD, with limited input from mostly self-selected so-called multi-stakeholders who collectively form the "junket culture" within ICANN, or as some call it, the "gravy train," as ICANN has done with its new gTLDs domain names program, and in the process completely disregard the public interest -- ignoring objections and warnings from governments, businesses, trademark holders, and others -- ICANN should at least have thought through all of the ramifications, pitfalls, conflicts, and other problems now resulting. Instead, thanks to ICANN, we now have a multi-million-dollar boondoggle and corruption of the internet domain name space. Here's just one example, of many, of the disaster ICANN has created as a result of its new gTLDs process --

https://www.icann.org/en/system/files/correspondence/roussos-to-crocker-et-al-01jul14-en.pdf (pdf)

240 pages all about just one new gTLD! Multiply that times 1300+ (the total number of new gTLDs to be launched in the "first phase") and you begin to get an idea of the magnitude of chaos and confusion ICANN has irresponsibly unleashed on the global Internet community. There was a better way and there is no excuse nor justification for what ICANN has done. ICANN, its Board of Directors, staff, and all others responsible, should be held accountable. But ICANN is "a monopolistic, hardly accountable private organisation that exercises public authority and power," with no membership and controlled by an "unelected, self-interested, self-legitimised corporate board, answerable, when it really comes down to it, only to itself." The remedy therefore is to replace ICANN.


Slate: ICANN's "new gTLDs are a solution in search of a problem, a multi-million-dollar boondoggle"

Marc Naimark, a "LGBTQ activist with a particular interest in sport and the internet," has written several articles in Slate about ICANN's new gTLD domain names program, particularly about .gay, and .lgbt. His latest article is at the link below (excerpt follows, emphasis added):

dotHIV: Can the new .hiv domain turn ICANN's boondoggle into an opportunity to do good?: "“You are creating a business, like derivatives on Wall Street, that has no value,” Esther Dyson, the founding chairwoman of ICANN, the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers, once said about ICANN's project to create hundreds of new generic top level domains, known as gTLDs. Aside from the opportunity to use non-Latin alphabets, the new gTLDs are a solution in search of a problem, a multi-million-dollar boondoggle, generating income of more than $300 million in ICANN application fees alone. (Paradoxically, this may result in only minimal net revenue for the corporation.) That sum does not include the operating costs of the hundreds of applicants seeking to become the registry for a given gTLD ... nor the ongoing costs to brand owners, who are already seeing the negative consequences they feared at the launch of the program. These new gTLDs offer real risks to the LGBTQ community. I have written here and here  about the travails of dotgay LLC in its attempts to secure the .gay gTLD. After granting a commercial operator the rights to .lgbt, ICANN will soon decide whether dotgay LLC's community priority application will succeed for .gay, or whether the string will be awarded to the highest bidder for purely commercial operation. If the latter comes to pass, both .gay and .lgbt, the two names under consideration of the greatest interest to the LGBTQ community, will be operated solely to benefit commercial interests, with no protection against possible abuse of these names, no community involvement, and no funds returning to the community. But there is a third gTLD that also concerns many in the LGBTQ community: .hiv. It has enjoyed a much better fate than .gay and offers some good from the ill wind ICANN has been blowing on the web...." (read more at link above)


Tesla Sued by China Trademark Claimant and Domain Name Owner

Trademarks, sovereignty, and domain names -- it's all a BIG mess and getting worse thanks to ICANN and its new gTLDs and UDRP policy* --

Tesla Sued by Businesseman Claiming China Trademark Right - Bloomberg: ".... SAIC’s Trademark Review and Adjudication Board then revoked his Tesla trademarks in July 2013 in response to the U.S. carmaker’s request. Zhan, who also has the Tesla.cn Internet domain redirect to his Twitter account, said he’s appealed and the case is under review. Trademark rulings become official when appeals end, according to Chinese law. “We have brought multiple actions against Zhan on account of his theft of our trademarks, and various Chinese authorities that have ruled on the matter have agreed with Tesla,” Sproule said. Zhan’s lawsuit “will not stop us in any way from operating in China,” he said...." (read more at link above)

Perhaps we will next see Mr. Zhan (tesla.cn) and Tesla Motors (teslamotors.com) cross-file UDRPs against each other -- that might be fun to watch. Just wait until we have all 1300+ new gTLDs launched!

*Resources - ICANN: "All registrars must follow the the Uniform Domain-Name Dispute-Resolution Policy (often referred to as the "UDRP"). Under the policy, most types of trademark-based domain-name disputes must be resolved by agreement, court action, or arbitration before a registrar will cancel, suspend, or transfer a domain name. Disputes alleged to arise from abusive registrations of domain names (for example, cybersquatting) may be addressed by expedited administrative proceedings that the holder of trademark rights initiates by filing a complaint with an approved dispute-resolution service provider."


ICANN role in IANA Functions is Clerical, Iran Will Not Lose .IR ccTLD

Graphic of the IANA functions -- the internet root zone management process
The "IANA Functions Operator" is ICANN--a clerical role, the Administrator is the US Department of Commerce, and the Root Zone Maintainer is Verisign

Kudos to John R. Levine for illuminating both Why Iran is not going to lose the .IR domain and how limited ICANN's current role in the IANA functions really is--

John R. Levine's blog - Internet and e-mail policy and practice: "... the lawyers completely misunderstand ICANN's relationship to country code domains (ccTLDs). A few ccTLDS have agreements to make voluntary contributions to ICANN, but Iran doesn't, so ICANN gets no money from them. ICANN's role in ccTLD management is easy to tell from this diagram [see above], which comes from their IANA Functions contract with the US Department of Commerce. In the figure the IANA Functions Operator is ICANN, the Administrator is the Department of Commerce, and the Root Zone Maintainer is Verisign. The Root Server Operators are a dozen separate organizations, three of which are outside the US and not subject to US law. So ICANN's only role is clerical. They get the change requests from the TLD Operator, which in Iran's case is the Institute for Research in Fundamental Sciences in Tehran. Once they have processed the change request, which means verifying that it really came from the proper party, and that it isn't technically defective (sometimes a problem with small less sophisticated countries), they pass it on to DoC for approval... DoC sends it along to Verisign who updates the root zone and distributes the zone file to the root server operators. From this it should be evident that ICANN has nothing to give the lawyers...." (read more at the link above)

So the litigation involving Iran's ccTLD again shows how limited ICANN's role in the IANA functions really is--only "clerical." And a staff of only 10 people. So is there any reason why IANA should not be separated from ICANN? Of course not! The only ones objecting to that are power-mad ICANN and its sycophants.


ICANN Process for New gTLDs Dysfunctional -- from the beginning

"When a decision is taken about a possible new top-level domain, ICANN's job is to work out, in a transparent and accountable manner, whether it is really in the best interest of the world as a whole, not just of those launching the new domain." -- Tim Berners-Lee
Jean Guillon writing in CircleID asks: "What if France Had Applied for a .WINE New gTLD? ....Well… the situation would be the exact same — the applicant would be in front of three other .WINE applicants with this exact same question: how do I win the auction?... "Standard applications", "Community applications" and "Geographic applications" were created by ICANN to offer a range of procedures for applicants to decide whether "they" considered if their application was sensitive or not. ICANN has no "conseil des sages" or CFT procedure upfront to do a first check up in the new gTLD application process. So what now?"

The whole ICANN process for new gTLDs was dysfunctional from the beginning. There should have been no fees such as the $185,000 per application fee, and no auctions. There should have been a process to receive nominations for new generic top-level domains. Anyone could submit a nomination for new gTLD name extension: .web, .app, etc., with the nominating form indicating the "public interest" rationale and need for the new gTLD extension. A nominating committee to review and process the nominations would be composed of members of the global internet community, including but not limited to, domain name registrants, commercial, civil society, and government representatives (with access to experts in naming protocols, marketing, trademarks, economics, technical and other matters). The nominating committee would specifically exclude from membership registry representatives and anyone else who intended to apply to become a registry of any new gTLD or provide services to current or new gTLDs registry operators. The nominating committee would evaluate the nominations, to determine which ones ranked highest in terms of both rationale and need, in the public interest, perhaps even conducting polls for general world opinion and consensus as to preferences among the nominated new gTLDs. From that process, the nominating committee would determine and publish ranked lists of proposed new gTLDs, which would be published to the global multistakeholder community for comment, for a period of not less than thirty days. Once the comment period closed, the ranked lists and comments would be submitted to the ICANN Board (or its designee) for final determination of which new gTLDs would be added to the global domain name system.

Then, and only then, the process of soliciting and selecting the registry operator for each new gTLD would begin. That process would end with the selected registry operator executing its contract with ICANN -- ICANN acting on behalf of the global internet community. The registry operator contracts would include terms requiring operation of each new gTLD registry in the public interest for a term of years, at the lowest possible cost in annual domain name registration fees, all of which would be strictly regulated by ICANN. Financial soundness of each registry operator applicant would be one, but only one, of many criteria by which the ICANN Board or its designee would make the final registry operator selections. No fees would be paid to ICANN by the selected or applicant registry operators. ICANN would receive only the fee paid upon registration/transfer of each domain name -- ICANN, the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers, charges a mandatory yearly fee of $0.18 for each year of domain registration per domain name. (Registry operators would be required to pay annual assessments for operation of the internet root zone and other technical IANA functions, directly to IANA, a separate entity.)

Every current and new gTLD should be considered to be the "property" of the global internet community, regulated by ICANN, and operated by each registry, in the "public interest." ICANN was never originally intended to be an ATM or "cash machine" -- "put in your $185,000 and we will issue you your new gTLD which you can do with pretty much as you like" nor an issuer of new gTLDs to the highest bidder -- Glossary | ICANN New gTLDs: "Auction -- A method for allocating property or goods to the highest bidder." Nor were generic top-level domains ever originally intended to be licenses to make profits at the expense of the public interest -- damaging trademarks, businesses, and others in the process.

But somewhere along the line, ICANN stopped listening to people like Esther Dyson and Tim Berners-Lee, and decided to sell out the public interest for private gain and profit. In the process, ICANN has irreparably damaged the internet and its domain name system for which it was supposed to be a protector and steward.

John Poole
Domain Mondo
July 4, 2014


ICANN, IANA, and the IETF, Internet Engineering Task Force (video)

Top 10 Things to Know Before Your First IETF Meeting -  video below:

IANA transition: it may take a long, long time, perhaps never, before ICANN is accountable, transparent, and ready. That is another reason why it is better to proceed and separate IANA from ICANN, now. IETF seems to agree (see below).

"The IETF's mission is "to make the Internet work better" but it is the Internet Engineering Task Force, so this means: make the Internet work better from an engineering point of view. We try to avoid policy and business questions, as much as possible. If you're interested in these general aspects, consider joining the Internet Society. Most participants in the IETF are engineers with knowledge of networking protocols and software. Many of them know a lot about networking hardware too."

ICANN and Transition of NTIA’s Stewardship | IETF Blog: "Accountability has been a big topic for debate at ICANN. But for the purposes of the [IANA] transition, what matters are those aspects of accountability that relate to the IANA functions. And those aspects need to be addressed in the transition. There are other aspects of accountability in the ICANN system that may require a different and longer process."


Julia Powles on ICANN and Internet Governance in The Guardian

Julia Powles @juliapowles, a researcher in law and technology at the University of Cambridge, has written an insightful article on ICANN and internet governance, published in The Guardian, excerpts follow (emphasis added) with a link to full article below:

What exactly do governments speak for, if not the public interest? And what does ICANN offer instead? Its hardly pacifying alternative is an unelected, self-interested, self-legitimised corporate board, answerable, when it really comes down to it, only to itself and the attorney general of California.

ICANN isn’t a corporation competing with others for a share of its market. Instead, it’s a centralised, monopolistic, hardly accountable private organisation that exercises public authority and power. At the same time that it’s providing services to the domain name industry, it is also trying to regulate it. On top of that, it claims to be “dedicated to keeping the internet secure, stable and interoperable.”

We know from history and economics that monopolies in private hands never act in the public interest. ICANN, however, masterfully avoids this topic by appealing to amorphous, unenforceable notions of accountability to the “global community”; something they try to capture with the ugly term “multistakeholderism”. The real problem with this poorly defined notion is that, in practice, it serves powerful incumbents...  diffusing talk of any genuinely representative global alternative for policy-making and oversight.

At the very least ICANN shouldn’t be both policy-maker and implementer when it comes to root zone file management. Both these functions and root server oversight require independence from political and economic influence.

Read more here: The byzantine, meandering discussion on the future of the internet | Technology | theguardian.com

Domain Mondo archive