[At-Large] Issue Report on Thick Whois

Evan Leibovitch evan at telly.org
Tue Nov 22 16:34:31 UTC 2011

On 22 November 2011 11:15, Lutz Donnerhacke <lutz at iks-jena.de> wrote:

> In iks.lists.icann.at-large, you wrote:
> > On 22 November 2011 03:25, Lutz Donnerhacke <lutz at iks-jena.de> wrote:

> No, thin WHOIS provides you the chain of responsibility down to the
> reseller
> which has the real contract with the domain owner.

The reseller is merely the provider of the domain. There are very few
industries I can think of in which the reseller is expected to maintain
publicly-accessible information on the owner.

> If there is a fraudulent player in the chain you obtain the next
> responsible partner and the nature of the contract from the thin WHOIS
> approach.

I don't owe a reseller a rationale of why I need the domain owner's

In the case of existing identity proxies such as automobile license plates,
it is government not industry that maintains contact information and it is
usually a criminal offense to maintain false information. That may be a
reasonable alternative but should be discussed further in an At-Large

> With thick WHOIS, you only have an invalidate record in the database.

Maintaining an invalidate record is an act of fraud and should be treated
as one.

> > Internet domains are, by their nature, public instruments to be used to
> > help people find Internet content. This is one area in which privacy, by
> > and large is the realm of people hiding from (what I believe to be)
> > legitimate investigation. I do not believe that, in this case, the public
> > should be denied information available to law enforcement.
> Law enforcement is a big problem with thick WHOIS

That is a policy issue which can -- and should -- be solved.

> > I would remind that At-Large is charged with protecting the interests of
> > Internet end users, not registrants. Registrants have an interest in
> being
> > able to hide. End users have an interest in domain owner accountability
> and
> > transparency.
> You deny end users the right to take part in the Internet.

End users do not buy domains. Their level of participation is at a
different level and they are not part of the ICANN food chain.

> I do disagree with this classification.

You are welcome to disagree, but the role of At-Large is now fairly well
defined in the ICANN bylaws and that is what we work with. There are many
other constituencies within ICANN who are charged with speaking for
registrants. At-Large is the only body within ICANN that speaks for
end-users who are adversely impacted by opaque and unaccountable domain
ownership information.

- Evan

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