[At-Large] R: Fwd: [] Final Issue Report on New gTLD Subsequent Procedures

Christopher Wilkinson cw at christopherwilkinson.eu
Thu Dec 10 14:26:51 UTC 2015

Well, it would be very helpful if ICANN could comment on the IID report.

Regarding consumer protection, I would note that there IS a system for Registry recuperation in the form of Registry Data Escrow
If IID are close to the mark, ICANN may need to use that, rather sooner than one might have hoped.

Regarding differentiation among new TLDs, I think there may be some problems. Would we need TLD 'rating agencies' - ?

Regarding the risks to Registrants, one might bear in mind that significant numbers of names are not purchased by private individuals but registered by corporations and other commercial businesses, world wide. If the idea gets around that some of the new TLDs are <.l****>, (which ones?) then that would really not be helpful in marketing new names, even on a short 3-5 year horizon.

I would also recall that the ICANN economic strategy that was set up in the 1990's, was to increase Registrar competition and reduce Registry concentration in the DNS markets. 
How far have we got with that in the last fifteen years? What are the prospects?


On 10 Dec 2015, at 12:00, "Subrenat, Jean-Jacques" <jjs at dyalog.net> wrote:

> This discussion has brought to light some important points.
> Karl's analysis, in particular, is deeply relevant, for instance when he remarks that "ICANN can not be, and ought not to be, a guarantor of anything more than the technical quality of upper tier DNS operations".
> But this begs a question: is there an entity, or perhaps a set of processes, which may provide the kind of guarantee we're talking about here, and which is a legitimate expectation of registrants and, more generally, the global Internet user? What is it, what are they? If not, what type of entity and/or process need(s) to be set up?
> Best regards,
> Jean-Jacques.
> ----- Mail original -----
> De: "Roberto Gaetano" <roberto_gaetano at hotmail.com>
> À: "Karl Auerbach" <karl at cavebear.com>, at-large at atlarge-lists.icann.org
> Envoyé: Jeudi 10 Décembre 2015 11:41:08
> Objet: [At-Large] R: Fwd: [] Final Issue Report on New gTLD Subsequent	Procedures
> +1
> I remember the early discussions on the ICANN Board about the introduction
> of new TLDs.
> When discussing the risk of failure of the new TLDs, I said that I did not
> understand where was the problem: we could, for instance, have a .lousy TLD,
> with names sold at a bargain price, but no guarantee of continuity, and a
> ..perfect TLD with a different profile, but at a higher price. And the
> consumer will choose, knowing the risk and advantages in either case.
> To a certain extent, this is what is happening now - for sure there are TLDs
> that face a higher risk of failure than others - and in the medium term
> prices will adjust to this.
> Cheers,
> R
>> -----Messaggio originale-----
>> Da: at-large-bounces at atlarge-lists.icann.org [mailto:at-large-
>> bounces at atlarge-lists.icann.org] Per conto di Karl Auerbach
>> Inviato: giovedì 10 dicembre 2015 10:56
>> A: at-large at atlarge-lists.icann.org
>> Oggetto: Re: [At-Large] Fwd: [] Final Issue Report on New gTLD Subsequent
>> Procedures
>> On 12/9/15 11:31 PM, Avri Doria wrote:
>>> On 09-Dec-15 17:56, Christopher Wilkinson wrote:
>>>> More generally, TLD policy should protect the Registrant. Apparently
> that
>> is not part of the new gTLD deal. Or is it?
>>> To an extent.  ...
>> I very much agree with Avri's positions here.
>> ICANN was not constructed to be a consumer protection agency.  It was
>> constructed to assure stability - in fact in the beginning the word
> "technical"
>> was always pre-pended to "stability".  Stability is not permanency.  A DNS
>> is stable if it doesn't wobble within time frames measured in weeks and
>> months.  But "stability" of anything related to the internet does not
> extend
>> to terms measured by unbounded numbers of years.
>> Now it is true, and remains true, that ICANN denies third party
> beneficiary
>> rights to registrants.  Thus domain name registrants have no legal
> standing to
>> compel TLD operators to meet existing ICANN established standards of
>> operational quality.  That is something that would be very valuable and
> would
>> be easy to put into place but which ICANN has resisted for its entire
>> existence.  If anything should be fixed, it is that.
>> The question should be: "How much larger do we want ICANN's already large
>> footprint to become?"
>> ICANN's regulatory footprint is already large and heavy.
>> ICANN required TLD applicants to set aside a full three years of operating
>> costs - that was something I have not seen in any other area of business,
>> even businesses that involve human health and safety.  That cost was an
>> enormous burden to applicants, and prevented many people and groups to
>> refrain from even bothering to apply for a TLD.  Isn't three years of
> funded
>> operations "stable"? Should it be ten years, fifty years, a century?
>> And ICANN already requires the new TLD operators to have hired backup
>> operators on hot standby.  That added no small amount of initial cost and
>> creates a significant operational overhead cost.
>> Much of what is being proposed strikes me as a revival of centralized
> five-
>> year style planning, but this time for the internet.  I can't say that
> that kind of
>> centralized planning has had a great history of success.  And success is
>> particularly unlikely for something that is so rapidly changing and
> evolving as
>> the internet.
>> I remember back in the early 1970's when we were playing with packet
>> switched networks that the telephone companies were raising the roofs
>> claiming that we were playing with fire, that we would destroy the wonder-
>> of-the-world which was the national and international telephone network.
>> They were right; we did, eventually.  But it was not the economic disaster
>> that was predicted.
>>  To do more risks
>> strangling the golden goose of the internet or, more likely, sending the
> goose
>> elsewhere.
>> The example of VW's cheating on emissions was raised as some sort of
>> analogy to ICANN.  I do not see that analogy.  In the VW case, express
>> statements were made to governments and buyers that vehicles would
>> meet certain emission, power, and mileage numbers. Explicit promises to
>> buyers were knowingly and intentionally broken - or in the words of the
> law,
>> there was a misstatement of material facts upon which people relied to
> their
>> detriment - in a word, fraud.  In most places fraud is unlawful and those
>> harmed can bring actions to recover their losses.  And when really bad,
> fraud
>> can rise to the criminal level and those responsible be punished.
>> No such promises are made by either ICANN nor TLD sellers beyond that TLD
>> operations will meet certain minimum ICANN established requirements.  And
>> no one has said that those requirements are not being met.
>> ICANN's own long term requirement for many TLDs that domain names
>> registrations be limited to no more than ten years undercuts arguments
> that
>> domain name buyers some how believe that acquisition of domain names is
>> something with permanency similar to a common law fee simple absolute
>> right in real property.  Even the word "registration" rather than
> "purchase"
>> tends to suggest impermanence.
>> I believe that some of the new TLD offerings did make it part of their
>> business plans to provide very long term guarantees.  But if I remember
>> correctly, those offerings were orders of magnitude more expensive per
>> year than the more routine TLD offerings.  In other words, consumers have
>> options to purchase long term guarantees by choosing those TLDs that make
>> such warranties.
>> If one pushes ICANN to be a consumer protection agency than domain name
>> prices will be forced to significantly rise.  Consider how much it would
> cost to
>> acquire an business continuation insurance policy. The actuaries will
> crank the
>> numbers in order to maintain 100% continuity for an indefinite period in
> the
>> face of even unforeseeable risks and come up with a whopping dollar
>> number that will strangle DNS innovation or drive people to do what has
>> always been possible but always been dismissed because the existing system
>> runs very well: competing DNS systems outside of the ICANN realm.
>> But if one looks at an even longer time scale - say ten years - it is
> becoming
>> very clear that DNS names - which includes all TLDs - are slowly
> submerging to
>> become internal internet machinery and not really of much interest to
> users.
>> Things like Facebook and Twitter handles and URL's (which don't need to
>> contain domain names at all) are becoming the names and addresses of the
>> internet.  In that future *all* TLDs are at risk of loosing revenue
> streams.
>> ICANN is already bloated to the degree that one fears that it is at risk
> from
>> just one thin wafer (that's a Monty Python reference). There is not much
>> that is funny when one begins to compare ICANN's staff size and budgets to
>> that of the ITU (especially if one plots the growth of those numbers of
> each
>> body over time and asks "when will they intersect?")
>>         --karl--
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