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    WLS Approved, With Amendments | Log in/Create an Account | Top | 21 comments | Search Discussion
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    Re: WLS Approved, With Amendments
    by RFassett on Saturday August 24 2002, @07:57PM (#8690)
    User #3226 Info | http://www.enum.info
    Peter, to be honest, I feel it runs a little deeper than the point you are making. It is about ICANN's ability to continue to enforce regulatory measures upon the market place by registry contract. As a private entity, ICANN has no authority as a regulatory body. It can only achieve regulatory controls - such as wholesale price capping - by "mutually agreed" contract.

    So, what is .INFO going to do, not sign the contract stating it will abide by UDRP? Or .AERO that it will not operate a sponsored TLD? What if .BIZ decided to raise their wholesale price tomorrow to $10....what's stopping this? Oh, their contract....the one they HAD to sign to gain entry. My guess is that .PRO challenged ICANN's ability to regulate price but have sat on the sidelines as a result. It is reasonable to say that the hold-up of .PRO has nothing to do with their qualifications to run a registry.

    Now, say ICANN actually devises a well outlined system to foster competition at the top level, do you think their authority to regulate the market place (by way of contract) will come into question by applicants at a far greater rate than 1 out of 7? You bet.

    Notice ICANN never made "$6 or less" a requirement in the first round. What a coincidence that all 7 that were chosen applied at "$6 or less". Why did ICANN not just make this is an upfront requirement? Because they can't...as a private entity, it is a regulatory measure outside of their scope and jurisdiction. They can only achieve this by "mutually agreed" contract. Well, if ICANN opens up the top level to competition, it won't be able to pick just 7 cooperative parties ensuring certain regulatory measures for the market place (that it sees as best for us) by way of "mutually agreed" contract.

    There is more than a reasonable chance that a court may rule that a registry does not have to sign a contract abiding by UDRP in order to gain entry on the grounds ICANN, as a private entity, has no authority to impose this unilaterally across borders. Same for price controls. Same for sponsored-restricted, etc. These are things applicants would question upon ICANN devising a clearly defined system of entry and the reason they have continued to avoid doing so, regardless of their mandate. Notice how ccTLD registries have avoided such regulation by contract and there is really nothing ICANN can do about it because it is not - by inherent design - a global, regulatory body. Recognizing this, does ICANN want to bring on more of the same?

    ICANN's actions show it to believe that DNS addressing should be absolved of decentralized decision making based upon prior precedent. Opening up the TLD space brings this way of thinking into a direct collision course with such decentralized mechanisms that would challenge it. The (many) applicants that would meet ICANN's admittance guidelines should they devise such a thing would be the ones doing the challenging...not just signing contracts - or else.
    [ Reply to This | Parent ]


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