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

    New gTLDs Twomey's new gTLD plan (not), and the .travel fix
    posted by michael on Friday August 01 2003, @05:40AM

    ehasbrouck writes "At Montreal, the ICANN board "resolved [03.113] that the President is requested to provide to the Board, no later than 26 July 2003, a detailed plan and schedule for development of an appropriate long-term policy for introduction of new gTLDs into the domain-name system using predictable, transparent, and objective procedures, including at least the following elements:
    1. completion of the presently ongoing review of the results of the new-TLD proof of concept initiated in 2000;
    2. obtaining advice and analysis on issues pertinent to such a long-term policy from appropriate sources;
    3. commencement of a well-focused Policy-Development Process within the Generic Names Supporting Organization on such a long-term policy; and
    4. consultation with ICANNís Advisory Committees and other Supporting Organizations."
    The deadline has passed, but I can't find this report on the ICANN Web site."

    "Meanwhile, ICANN staff seem to have had trouble coordinating their fix of the new sTLD criteria to ensure approval of .travel. The "Travel Partnership Corporation", a front group set up by IATA to satisfy critics of IATA's inability to represent the entirety of the community of interest in .travel (but which still represents only the travel industry, not travellers), has filed comments on the ICANN staff draft sTLD criteria. The TPC obviously thinks of .travel as a fait accompli -- have you ever seen any other gTLD applicant express such certainly about their future approval?

    But the TPC is concerned that the elaborate scheme for sponsorship of .travel by IATA and ICANN's cronies at the Tralliance Corp., with the TPC as captive "policy maker" but not actual sponsor, might not satisfy ICANN's newest rules. So they are lobbying to get the rules rewritten, again, to ensure their approval. The point is to enable IATA and Tralliance to co-sponsor .travel, using the TPC -- nominally representative and neutral, although in reality neither -- as policy rubber-stamp to give legitimacy to the application, without even the formality of actually handing over sponsorhip to the TPC.

    ICANN's comment-munging system made the TPC comments difficult to decipher, even if you can find them, so I've attached a text version below. (The comments are here. You have to download the attachment, change the file extension from ".bin" to ".doc", then open it in Microsoft Word.)

    The Travel Partnership Corporation
    Board of Directors:
    Jean-Claude Baumgarten, WTTC (Chairman)
    Kevin Dobby, IATA
    Alain-Philippe Feutre, IH&RA
    William A. Maloney, CTC, ASTA
    Michael D.  Gehrisch, IACVB
    Birger Backman, UFTAA
    Tom Jenkins, ETOA
    Michael Crye, ICCL
    Peter de Jong, PATA
    July 28, 2003
    Dr. Vinton G. Cerf
    Mr. Paul Twomey
    President & Chief Executive Officer
    Internet Corporation
    for Assigned Names and Numbers
    4676 Admiralty Way, Suite 330
    Marina del Rey, CA 90292
    Reference:  The .travel Top Level Domain
    Dear Dr. Cerf:
    Dear Mr. Twomey:

    We have been following ICANNís progress with regard to introducing sponsored top-level domains for a considerable time, and have encouraged the ICANN Board and its Chief Executive on several occasions to make this matter a top priority. The travel and tourism industry -- as is well known to the world at this juncture -- is facing unprecedented challenges. In these uncertain times, we view .travel as a vital component in our drive to galvanize our industry and to respond effectively to travelersí needs as we look to the sectorís recovery.

    We note that a draft RFP for sTLDs is now open for public comment and, as the Chairman of The Travel Partnership Corporation (TPC), I would like to comment on two issues that we feel are most important.

    The first issue refers to the timeline that has been detailed within the RFP. We look to ICANN to ensure that this timeline is maintained. If the timeline is maintained, it will effectively be three years since our .travel sTLD application was originally filed and, with all due respect, we believe that that is long enough to wait for the approval of .travel. Having watched as the anticipated RFP for sTLDs was first introduced as a Criteria Paper, in Rio de Janeiro, in March 2003 and posted for 6-weeks of public comment; followed by the Draft, which was introduced in Montreal, in June 2003, and the Boardís unexpected decision to provide for an additional 8-weeks of public comment, the TPC is keen to see the final RFP posted promptly following the August 25th closing of the public comment period. More specifically, we call on ICANN to assure the community that there will be no further delays and that the 18-week process will roll out as it is currently defined, with an anticipated award of .travel by December 2003.

    The second issue we would like to comment on is ICANNís narrow definition of the term "sponsor." The legal form of the "sponsor," in our opinion, is not the relevant factor. Rather, any legal entity which has the ability to commit the necessary managerial and financial resources on behalf of the constituency it serves -- coupled with a policy making body representative of the constituency -- should be allowed to sponsor a sTLD. Therefore, we strongly recommend that ICANN expand its definition of the term "sponsor" to allow both for-profit and not-for-profit entities to sponsor new sTLD applications without any bias towards one or the other.

    We hope that these views will help you with your deliberations, and look forward to seeing the posting of the final RFP in early September 2003.

    Jean-Claude Baumgarten

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  • Dr. Paul Twomey
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  • More on New gTLDs
  • Also by michael
    This discussion has been archived. No new comments can be posted.
    Twomey's new gTLD plan (not), and the .travel fix | Log in/Create an Account | Top | 1 comments | Search Discussion
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    by cambler (chris@ambler.net) on Friday August 01 2003, @12:36PM (#12019)
    User #36 Info | http://onthenet.ambler.net/
    If you take their definition of "sponsor" at face value, then any applications, sponsored or unsponsored, meets this criteria.

    An "unsponsored" application magically becomes "sponsored" by the applying entity.

    With that said, take the above letter, replace .travel with .web, and I could say the same.

    It's time for ICANN to simply create objective criteria and apply them to the 40 or so remaining applicants. The testbed is over - it's time to finish what was started in 2000.

    Ambler On The Net [ambler.net]

    [ Reply to This | Parent ]

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