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    Highlights of the ICANNWatch Archive
    (June 1999 - March 2001)


     
    Unclassifiable (rare) "Updating" whois
    posted by jon on Monday June 11 2001, @05:06AM

    A multiple-choice survey just popped up on the ICANN website, to "assess whether changes should be considered to the current Whois policy." The questionnaire calls on you to identify the most important uses of whois (perhaps, fingering intellectual-property infringers? supporting law enforcement? verifying online merchants?). It asks whether you are more concerned about protecting registrant privacy, resolving technical problems, or identifying domain owners for "consumer protection or intellectual property protection purposes" (nice linkage, that). It asks what data elements and search capability ICANN should require; whether ICANN should impose those requirements on the ccTLDs; and whether ICANN should require the availability of customized, one-stop whois searching across all TLDs. Tucked in toward the end, it asks about privacy protections.



    None of this should come as a surprise. Back in February, Mike Roberts stated (as paraphrased in meeting minutes) that "the circumstances surrounding Whois have changed dramatically since it was put in place," and various parties have varying "degrees of discomfort" with whois. (The folks with the greatest degree of discomfort, natch, are the Intellectual Property Constituency, who have been urging for some time that the current whois structure should be optimized for trademark and copyright enforcement.) Nonetheless, Roberts continued, whois "should not be changed except through an ICANN policy process. . . . Perhaps the ICANN organization through a deliberate process will come to some new conclusion about updating Whois for the 21st century Internet." But "the only reasonable way to undertake the changes is to very broadly base the process."

    So here we go. You might want to tell them what you think.

     
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