I thought the earlier coverage by ICANNWatch (with its dark prediction with which I concur) was based on knowledge of this special meeting of the BoD, at which the motion was passed that seems to be the underpinning for Louis Touton's stance:|
It is further RESOLVED [00.75] that in view of the state of ongoing discussions directed toward reaching stable and appropriate agreements between ICANN and the ccTLD organizations, delegation of additional ccTLDs should be finalized only upon achievement of stable and appropriate agreements between ICANN and the ccTLD organization, in a form approved by the Board.This was passed after the .ps delegation, so ICANN dodged the political hot potato of having its third ccTLD contract signed with the Occupied Palestine Territory, and instead (barring someone else signing in the meantime) will have .eu to add to its trophy case. BTW, .ps was on the same ISO 3166-1 restricted list as .eu but was denied delegation because of that until it made the main list. .eu was treated differently. What, you expect consistency from ICANN? They clearly make things up as they go along.
I don't foresee .eu as being an opponent. I'll provide some links later on some of their thinking regarding policy, but it is even more restrictive than ICANN has been to date on a number of issues. The two will fit well together as ubergovernment, taking turns being the velvet glove on the iron fist.
To have the prophecy come true, .eu need only put legal pressure within its bailiwick on the various CENTR ccTLDs to rationalize and harmonize themselves with .eu, or else. Then expect similar regional uTLDs (uberTLDs), perhaps everywhere except North America (or that one last). ccTLDs threatened the nuclear option of going away, now ICANN is getting itself into position to say: go ahead, make my day. -g