[NA-Discuss] DRAFT statement on .pr

Alan Greenberg alan.greenberg at mcgill.ca
Fri Oct 14 19:29:35 UTC 2011

Beau, it would be useful to include in the statement the current 
state of the issue with regard to ICANN, IANA and the courts.

That is, is there a current dispute/process underway to address this 
and if so, what is the state.


At 14/10/2011 01:10 PM, Beau Brendler wrote:
>Hello, all. Here is the statement on the .pr controversy prepared by 
>Eduardo with comments by Garth and final revisions by me. Please 
>read and give feedback promptly. I'd also like Eduardo to look over 
>it carefully to make sure there are no editing errors introduced.
>The North American At-Large Regional Organization wants to bring the 
>ICANN community's attention to a serious concern regarding 
>management of Puerto Rico's country code top-level domain, .pr, 
>following a June 2011 lawsuit filed by The University of Puerto Rico 
>against the domain's manager alleging misappropriation of public 
>funds and inappropriate ownership claim of the domain, among other 
>In 1988, the U.S. National Science Foundation established a program 
>to expand use of the Internet outside the United States by 
>establishing a domain registration that would allow each country 
>connected to the network to offer access the Internet through that domain.
>Within that program, the University of Puerto Rico, through its 
>Gauss Research Laboratory in the Natural Sciences department, 
>requested the domain ".pr" (institutional research number 8818283, 
>"Support for the Participation of the University of Puerto Rico in 
>the NSFNet"). This proposal was approved in 1989 and administration 
>of the .pr domain was designated to the "Gauss Research Laboratory" 
>with the university as manager.
>In 2006, the .pr ccTLD's manager contacted the Internet Assigned 
>Numbers Authority to request a name change in the sponsoring 
>organization, from the University of Puerto Rico to a corporation 
>with the same name, including the abbreviations "INC. i.e. Gauss 
>Research Laboratory, Inc." As a result of this change, Gauss 
>Research Laboratory Inc. was permitted to remove the .pr ccTLD 
>operations outside the university campus, as well as redirect any 
>funds generated by domain purchases.
>Results of IANA Decision
>It is apparent IANA, in its decision, considered the  request for a 
>name change in the sponsoring organization to be an administrative 
>task, not a re-delegation of the ccTLD. However, according to the 
>lawsuit, the ccTLD manager took action as if a full re-delegation 
>had been made, allowing him to move the operation outside the 
>university. Critically, in 2007, Gauss Research Laboratory, Inc. 
>filed a change in corporate status from non-profit to for-profit 
>with the Department of State of the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico.
>Therefore, IANA's decision effectively resulted in the hijacking of 
>a public resource from a non-profit educational institution to a 
>for-profit corporation.
>The NARALO is concerned the apparent "re-delegation" of the .pr 
>domain represents a potential abuse of public trust and 
>misappropriation of Internet resources.
>In addition, while the controversy over Puerto Rico's country-code 
>domain may seem unusual, findings presented in the final report of 
>the ccNSO Delegation and Redelegation Working Group 
>clearly indicate it is not.
>NARALO applauds and supports the ccNSO working group's desire, 
>stated in that report, to "create an environment for making 
>consistent and predictable decisions regarding the delegation, 
>re-delegation and retirement of ccTLDs while enhancing 
>accountability and transparency."
>Therefore, at the 2011 ICANN meeting in Dakar, NARALO will present 
>the facts and allegations in this case, as well as examples of 
>similar cases, in hopes of prompting a multi-stakeholder discussion 
>and approach to create such an environment worldwide.

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