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  Useful ICANN sites  
  • ICANN itself
  • Bret Fausett's ICANN Blog
  • Internet Governance Project
  • UN Working Group on Internet Governance
  • Karl Auerbach web site
  • Müller-Maguhn home
  • UDRPinfo.com;
  • UDRPlaw.net;
  • CircleID;
  • LatinoamerICANN Project
  • ICB Tollfree News

  •   At Large Membership and Civil Society Participation in ICANN  
  • icannatlarge.com;
  • Noncommercial Users Constituency of ICANN
  • NAIS Project
  • ICANN At Large Study Committee Final Report
  • ICANN (non)Members page
  • ICANN Membership Election site

  • ICANN-Related Reading
    Browse ICANNWatch by Subject

    Ted Byfied
    - ICANN: Defending Our Precious Bodily Fluids
    - Ushering in Banality
    - ICANN! No U CANN't!
    - roving_reporter
    - DNS: A Short History and a Short Future

    David Farber
    - Overcoming ICANN (PFIR statement)

    A. Michael Froomkin
    - When We Say US™, We Mean It!
    - ICANN 2.0: Meet The New Boss
    - Habermas@ discourse.net: Toward a Critical Theory of Cyberspace
    - ICANN and Anti-Trust (with Mark Lemley)
    - Wrong Turn in Cyberspace: Using ICANN to Route Around the APA & the Constitution (html)
    - Form and Substance in Cyberspace
    - ICANN's "Uniform Dispute Resolution Policy"-- Causes and (Partial) Cures

    Milton Mueller
    - Ruling the Root
    - Success by Default: A New Profile of Domain Name Trademark Disputes under ICANN's UDRP
    - Dancing the Quango: ICANN as International Regulatory Regime
    - Goverments and Country Names: ICANN's Transformation into an Intergovernmental Regime
    - Competing DNS Roots: Creative Destruction or Just Plain Destruction?
    - Rough Justice: A Statistical Assessment of the UDRP
    - ICANN and Internet Governance

    David Post
    - Governing Cyberspace, or Where is James Madison When We Need Him?
    - The 'Unsettled Paradox': The Internet, the State, and the Consent of the Governed

    Jonathan Weinberg
    - Sitefinder and Internet Governance
    - ICANN, Internet Stability, and New Top Level Domains
    - Geeks and Greeks
    - ICANN and the Problem of Legitimacy

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


     

    Frequently Asked Questions

      What's New in This FAQ
      1. ICANNWatch.org conversion to Slash, January 2003 -- How to Use this Site
      2. I am an existing user and I can't log in -- what happened, and what can I do about it?
      3. I'm being sued/UDRP'ed about a domain name I registered. Can you help me?
    1. ICANN
      1. What is ICANN?
      2. Where can I learn more about ICANN?
    2. ICANNWatch.org
      1. What is it?
      2. Who runs it?
      3. Why are you doing this?
      4. I'm being sued/UDRP'ed about a domain name I registered. Can you help me?
      5. How can I help?
        1. Content
        2. Technical help
        3. Hosting
        4. Money
      6. Can I become an ICANNWatch editor?
    3. ICANNWatch.org conversion to Slash, January 2003 -- How to Use this Site
      1. I am an existing user and I can't log in -- what happened, and what can I do about it?
      2. I am a new user.  Why would I want to create and account and how do I do it?
      3. What is Moderation?
      4. How do I become a Moderator?
      5. I'm a Moderator.  What should I look for?
      6. What is Meta-Moderation?
      7. What is Karma?
      8. What does 'X out of Y' comments mean under an article?
      9. What are flat, threaded and nested comments?
      10. Can I get e-mail summaries?
      11. Can I import headlines from ICANNWatch?
    4. Submitting Content
      1. New Stuff
        1. Proposing new stories
        2. Suggestions for new polls
        3. How long does it take for suggestions to be approved?
        4. I didn't get a rejection e-mail for my suggestion.
      2. Comments on Existing Stuff
        1. Comments on existing stories
        2. Comments on someone else's comment
        3. Comments on polls
    5. Site Policies
      1. Do I have to login in to use the site?
      2. Should I log in?
      3. Why do you allow anonymous postings?
      4. Do you censor anything?
      5. What is your privacy policy?
      6. Why did you post that stupid article?
      7. Why did you post that stupid comment?
      8. Why didn't you post my brilliant submission?
    6. Enhancement Requests
      1. Please create a new general 'topic' about X.
      2. Please create a new headline box mirroring headlines from Y.
    7. Technical Questions/ Bug Reports
      1. I forgot my password.  What should I do?
      2. I registered at the old site - what is my username/password at the new site?
      3. How do I customize the site to my tastes?
      4. I customized the site but nothing happened.
      5. I logged in but nothing happened.
      6. What software is ICANNWatch using?
      7. Why is the site so slow?
      8. I'm seeing a weird error message about a "db error" or something not found in "file.php"
      9. I'm seeing strange fragmentary text when I try to edit my options.
      10. I tried to edit my preferences but got error messages.
    8. Miscellaneous
      1. Is it OK to post in languages other than English?
    9. About this FAQ
      1. How do I get a question added to the FAQ?
      2. What version is this document?
      3. What's New in this FAQ?



    1. ICANN

    2.  
      1. What is ICANN?

      2. We're still arguing about that one. ICANN says that it is private, non-profit, consensus-based, California corporation charged with technical coordination of the Internet. Some others, including some of the people behind this web site, worry that ICANN has a somewhat manipulable idea of what constitutes a consensus, or that ICANN's close relationship with the U.S. Department of Commerce might make it a "state actor" under U.S. law-- a formally private body that has the same legal obligations to provide due process and non-discrimination as a government agency. For a quick intro to ICANN see our page on ICANN For Beginners .
         
      3. Where can I learn more about ICANN?

      4. One great source for keeping up-to-date with developments is Bret Fausett's ICANN Blog. We currently provide a little box with Bret's latest headlines in the left margin of our site.  We also have various links on the site to guide you to further reading, and to other ICANN-related web sites.


    3. ICANNWatch.org

    4.  
      1. What is it?

      2.  ICANNWatch.org is designed to be a news and comment forum for people interested in questions about the doing of the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers.
         
      3. Who runs it?

      4. See About us. Each of the editors on this list shares responsibility for choosing the main topics that appear on the site. Editors may create their own topics, or approve or reject submissions from readers.
         
      5. Why are you doing this?

      6. We think ICANN is important - maybe very important. See also the ICANNWatch.org Mission Statement .
         
      7. I'm being sued/UDRP'ed about a domain name I registered. Can you help me?

      8. You need legal advice, and we can't do that. Read this good advice from a domain name lawyer to innocent domain name holders.
         
      9. How can I help?

      10. We'd love to have your help.
         
        1. Content

        2. Everyone is welcome to contribute content to the site, either by joining one of the discussions triggered by a main topic , or by suggesting a new topic for discussion. See Submitting Content , below.
           
        3. Technical help

        4. We could always use more help from:
          1. Graphic artists for spiffy new graphics;
          2. Slashcode stars to play with functionality on the site;

          3.  
        5. Hosting

        6. If you have a fast machine with great connectivity and you would like to donate professional-quality hosting services, we'd like to talk with you. Especially if you have experience hosting Slash
           
        7. Money

        8. We are not looking for personal financial support.  We are currently supported by a grant from the Markle Foundation.  It's possible that when it runs out we may need small donations to pay the cost of hosting the site.  Or we may just pay it ourselves.
      11. Can I become an ICANNWatch editor?

      12. Maybe. We'd like to increase the number and diversity of editors, but we are being somewhat cautious about adding people we don't know personally.  Drop us a note.

       
    5. ICANNWatch.org conversion to Slash, January 2003 -- How to Use this Site

    6.  
      1. I am an existing user and I can't log in -- what happened, and what can I do about it?

      2. One of three things is likely going on here:
        1. On January 5, 2003, ICANNWatch switched from PHP-Nuke to Slash software. The change solves lots of problems that were driving us nuts, and will allow us to do new things -- but the cost was that every user of the old system has to set a new password. User names and information from the old system are still valid -- all you have to do is enter your user ID or email on this form to have a new temporary password e-mailed to you. Once you have that you can re-set your password to whatever you like.
        2. If you've signed in after January 5, 2003, then odds are that either you have forgotten your password and should request that  a new temporary password be e-mailed to you, or ...
        3. You have blocked cookies from this site -- you need to accept our (harmless, we promise!) cookie to log in. To check if your browser is set to accept cookies, go to Tools>Internet Options>Security>Custom Level (Internet Explorer), or Edit>Preferences>Advanced (Netscape).

        4. If none of these three things describes your situtation, email us for help at admin@icannwatch.org  .
           

      3. I am a new user. Why would I want to create an account and how do I do it?

      4. You don't have to sign in in order to post or comment on stories, but to get the most out of ICANNWatch, you'll need to create a user account. Here are some of the advantages:
        • An account makes the story-posting process faster for you, and assures that your name (or nickname) gets attached to everything you post (along with your e-mail address, and web page, if you choose to include them).
        • Having an account lets you go set your preferences to decide how you want to view or filter the stories and commentary you like.
        • If you have an account, you become eligable to be a moderator.
        • Posting when logged in to your account gives your comments a higher default score, making them more visible.
        • You can also choose to have the daily ICANNWatch news headlines emailed to you, and choose to get a notice when someone replies to your comments.
        We won't share your e-mail addresses, or sell it. You won't get any spam from us and we won't even display your address anywhere without your say-so.

        It is easy to create an account. Just follow the instructions. (Note: Whatever name you choose cannot be changed once the account is created.) You'll get a temporary password via e-mail, then you can change it to whatever you like. Although our server sends the temporary password out immediately, sometimes e-mail takes a while to deliver, so if you're itching to post a story but haven't got the password immediately, just click "Submit Story" and put in the nickname you chose.
         

      5. What is Moderation?

      6. One of the best aspects of the Slash discussion engine is the community's power to jointly filter what it thinks is interesting and worthwhile.  Logged-in members of the ICANNWach community get semi-randomly selected to serve briefly as moderators (unless they indicate in their preferences that they'd rather not moderate).  Your chance of being chosen as a moderator depends on your "Karma" level, which is a function of the sum the moderation points your comments have recieved from other users, how many posts you've made in the past few weeks, and how often you visit the site.

        When users become moderators they are given a number of points of influence to play with. Moderators give these points, one at a time, to what they think are the most interesting recent comments. Each comment they moderate deducts a point. When they run out of points, the user is done serving until his or her next turn. Users cannot participate in the same discussion as both a moderator and a poster. Moderation points expire after a certain period of time if they are left unused. The user's name then goes back into the pool and might someday be given moderation points again.

        Readers take advantage of the moderators' opinions by setting the minimum point total threshold needed for them to see comments.  This makes it very easy for you to immediately see the most interesting material commentary without wading through piles of less interesting comments.  All comments are scored on a scale from -2 to +5.

        • Each comment has a default value of one point when first contributed, but users who have accumulated a high "karma" by posting lots of good stuff find that their comments start with a score of two.
        • Each time a user becomes a moderators he or she gets five points to apply to other user's comments.
        • The moderators read the comments just like any other user.
        • If a moderator particularly likes or dislikes a comment, he or she can given or take a point from that comment.  Each such action reduces the moderator's stock of points.
        • Reader each set their reading threshold, which determines what comments they will see while browsing the site.  Set your comment threshold to 5, and you will only see the rare comment that the community most highly values.  Set it to -2 and you'll see it all, including the junk.  Most people choose to set their level to 1 or 2, but it's up to you.

        •  
      7. How do I become a Moderator?

      8. You are automatically chosen, on a random basis, to be a moderator by the Slashcode system. It decides by looking at your Karma level, which is basically the sum of all your moderated comments, how many posts you've made in the past few weeks, and how often you visit the site. 
         
      9. I'm a Moderator.  What should I look for?

      10. What should get a good score?  That's mostly up to you (although the editors are also moderators).


        Here's our advice:

        Set your browsing threshold to -1 or -2 to see posts that may have been unjustly marked down. Give points to comments that

        • are logical and level-headed
        • are well-written
        • say something new
        • include useful links
        • respond to the substance of the main story, or the comments above it
        • support any allegations of inaccuracy with links or evidence
        • are funny without being mean
        Take points more sparingly than you give them, but take them from comments that
        • are irrelevant to the main story
        • are mean or ad hominem
        Don't take points just because
        • you disagree with the political views
        • the writer is anonymous
        • the writing is poor -- recall that many of our users are not native English speakers
        It's important to understand that a comment with a low score is not being censored as it is still visible to those who choose to see it by setting their reading threshold low enough. A low score is a reflection of the community's collective view of the value of the post, but anyone is free to disregard that view.

        If you want to know more about moderation, you can read slashdot's essay on moderation -- geared to the slashdot.org website, but most of it is relevant to ICANNWatch.
         

      11. What is Meta-Moderation?

      12. Metamoderation is a second layer of moderation. It seeks to address the issue of unfair moderators by letting "metamoderators" (any logged-in Slashdotter) "rate the rating" of ten randomly selected comment posts. The metamoderator decides if the moderator's rating was fair, unfair, or neither. In order to be a metamoderator, your account has to be one of the oldest 97% of accounts on the system. This means that once you've created your account, you'll have to wait for anywhere from a few weeks to a month or two, depending on the rate at which new accounts are being created.

        Once you are eligible, you can meta-moderate once per day.

        Particpation as a meta-moderator can enhance your karma.
         

      13. What is Karma?

      14. Your karma is a reference that primarily represents how your comments have been moderated in the past. If a comment you post is moderated up, your karma will rise. Consequently, if you post a comment that has been moderated down, your karma will fall.

        In addition to moderation, other things factor into karma as well. You can get a fairly big karma bonus by submitting a story that we decide to post. Also, metamoderation can cause your karma to change. This encourages good moderators, and ideally removes moderator access from bad ones.

        Each comment has a default value of one point when first contributed, but users who have accumulated a high karma by posting lots of good stuff find that their comments start with a score of two.

        For more on karma, see this slashdot essay.  (It's for another website, but most of the information applies to ICANNWatch.)
         

      15. What does 'X out of Y comments' mean under an article?

      16. This just shows you how many comments are currently visible to you based on the comment threshold you have chosen. So there are X comments being shown out of Y total.
         
      17. What are flat, threaded and nested comments?

      18. These are different ways of viewing what can be a long list of replies to a story. Choose flat to show all the comments in one gigantic list, without showing the relationships between comments. Threaded mode displays a hierarchy of responses, with replies as links to new pages. Choose nested to display the same hierarchy of responses, but show all of the comments. And, of course, choose No Comments to show no comments. If you have logged in, you can edit your comment preferences to set a default viewing mode.
         
      19. Can I get e-mail summaries?

      20. Yes!  Just log in, and then set your messaging preferences.
         
      21. Can I import headlines from ICANNWatch?

      22. Yes. You can syndicate our headlines in your choice of .rdf, .rss, or .xml.


    7. Submitting Content

    8.  
      1. New Stuff

      2.  
        1. Proposing new stories

        2. Everyone is welcome to send news items, commentary, or whatever that they think deserves to be a new item.  Just click on the Submit Story link in the upper left hand corner of the "Inside ICANNWatch" box. Submissions may be anonymous.
           
        3. Suggestions for new polls

        4. We used to run polls, then they got tired. If you are submitting a story for which you think an associated poll would be appropriate, please indicated that in the submission. You need a fairly short question, and up to seven answers. It helps if at least one is silly, in order to keep anyone from taking the numbers too seriously.
           
        5. How long does it take for suggestions to be approved?

        6. That depends on how many we are getting and how industrious the editors are being. Generally speaking, with the possible exception of slow periods in the academic year like late December or mid-August, you should assume that if your suggestions have not been approved within a couple of days they probably will not be. It may be, however, that we will hold a few back if we are experiencing a flood of good submissions in order to even out the flow. Editors may sometimes neither approve nor disapprove a post they are not sure about, which leaves it in the queue for someone else to look at, but adds to response time.
           
        7. I didn't get a rejection e-mail for my suggestion.

        8. True. We don't send them. The current version of our software doesn't supply an automated rejection letter, and we are not doing it manually. However, you can see the fate of your earlier submissions by returning to the submissions page.

      3. Comments on Existing Stuff

      4. Please note that if you have not logged into the site, any comment you make will be anonymous. Even if you are logged in, you always have the option of posting anonymously.
         
        1. Comments on existing stories

        2.  
          1. If you want to comment on a story appearing on our homepage, follow the "Read More" link at the end of the story. This will bring you to the story's discussion area.
          2. Click on the "Post a Comment" button in the area below the story text.
          3. If you haven't already logged in, fill in the username and password box. If you've already logged in, your username will appear above the text boxes.
          4. Enter a title for your comment in the "Subject" box.
          5. Type your thoughts into the "Comment" box.
          6. Preview your comment before posting it in order to check for typos, broken hyperlinks, etc.

          7.  
        3. Comments on someone else's comment

        4. To respond to someone else's comment, click on "Reply to this" directly under the comment you are responding to.  Proceed as from step 3 above.
           
        5. Comments on polls

        6. Comments on polls work just like comments on regular threads, except that for some reason they tend to be sillier. Note that we don't have many polls these days.

       
    9. Site Policies

    10.  
      1. Do I have to login in to use the site?

      2. No.
         
      3. Should I log in?

      4. Yes.  Logging in has many benefits.
         
      5. Why do you allow anonymous postings?

      6. On balance, we think discussion is enhanced if people are allowed to post anonymously. Since this is a private web site, we don't feel obligated to allow anonymous postings. If the site is attacked by anonymous posters, we may reconsider our policies. It's worth noting, though, that since anonymous email accounts are easy to get, a ban on 'anonymous' postings wouldn't achieve much anyway.
        Please be aware that this site logs IP numbers even when you are making an 'anonymous' comment.
         
      7. Do you censor anything?

      8. We don't want to. We do exercise judgement about what stories we accept for our homepage, which isn't the same thing. On very rare occasions we have deleted something vile and repulsive that was posted, or something that clearly violated copyright or other laws. We disclosed this on each occasion, and if we do it again, we'll disclose it (look for the text "something else used to be here").  We also employ several filters to prevent posts which cause problems with how browsers render Slash. These filters are standard with the Slashcode package and we edit, add and delete these filters to suit our needs.
         
      9. What is your privacy policy?

      10. "We will not knowingly give out your personal data -- other than identifying your postings in the way you direct by setting your configuration options -- without a court order."
         
      11. Why did you post that stupid article?

      12. We (or, at any rate, one of us) liked it.
         
      13. Why did you post that stupid comment?

      14. We probably didn't. We are not responsible for the comments. Comments are posted by ICANNWatch readers, and are not filtered by the management (although we may get involved in discussions too).
         
      15. Why didn't you post my brilliant submission?

      16. It may still be in the queue. See How long does it take for suggestions to be approved? Or it may be we lack discernment.  Common reasons why your story might not have been posted:
        • Your story did not have a concise story summary at the start with a link to the original story.
        • We recently posted either the same story or a similar story.
        • The story was inaccessible to the public without registration at the original site.
        • It appeared to be copyrighted by someone other than you.
        • It was written in a highly technical style that we feared might be too off-putting for the intelligant non-specialist.

       
    11. Enhancement Requests

    12.  
      1. Please create a new general 'topic' about X.

      2. For a list of current topics click on the "Current Topics" link in the "Inside ICANNWatch" box in the left column of the site. We're happy to create a new topic if needed...especially if you suggest a good .gif to illustrate it, about 70x70.
         
      3. Please create a new headline box mirroring headlines from Y.

      4. We can run headline boxes from sites that produce properly formatted XML or RDF. We're reluctant to clutter up the page with too many, but if you know of a really good site that is about public policy issues in cyberspace that produces XML or RDF headlines, please let us know.

       
    13. Technical Questions/ Bug Reports

    14.  
      1. I forgot my password.  What should I do?

      2. You need to reset your password.
           
      3. I registered at the old site - what is my username/password at the new site?

      4. You username is unchanged.  You will need to set a new password by following the instructions under "I forgot my password".  If you can't recall your username, you can use the e-mail address you logged in with.

        How do I customize the site to my tastes?
        If you are logged in, you can configure what appears on our homepage by editing your preferences.  The same page allows you to choose our "light" format or exclude certain types of stories (or ICANNWatch editors!).  You can decide the content and order of the items in the right hand column, including choosing from several optional headline services.

        The format comments page lets you set a default for how you view comments and how comments you contribute appear.  Elsewhere you can review your karma and posting history, or set what information you would like other users to know about you.

        You may want to change your messaging preferences.  We can send you a daily email of our headlines, or perhaps you would like a message every time someone replies to one of your comments.

      5. I logged in but nothing happened.

      6. Log-in uses a cookie  Do you have cookies turned on?
           
      7. What software is ICANNWatch using?

      8. Slash version 2.2.6
         
      9. Why is the site so slow?

      10. If it's not your modem, it may be the code. There are, however, several ways to make ICANNWatch load more quickly. For those with slower dial-up connections, you can switch to ICANNWatch "lite". You still get all the same content, but without the buttons and graphics. If you customize your page (you must be logged in to do this), you can set preferences to show the lite version all the time. Even if you don't want to give up all your graphics, there are other custom settings that will speed things up. Limit the number of stories shown on the main page, turn off the icons, and limit the number of those little boxes on the right hand side of the screen. This won't speed things up, but if you are just not interested in some topics, you can exclude them from your home page.  And you can set preferences so you see only higher quality comments.

       
    15. Miscellaneous

    16.  
      1. Is it OK to post in languages other than English?

      2. Yes, for comments. At present we are limiting the language of the main articles to English.

       
    17. About this FAQ

    18.  
      1.  How do I get a question added to the FAQ?

      2. Please send us e-mail .
         
      3. What version is this document?

      4. 2.0
         
      5. What's New in this FAQ?

      6. 2.0

        Added new section on conversion to Slash; conforming changes throughout this documnet.

        1.5
        Updated to reflect changes in moderation policy.

        1.4a
        Adjustments to "How Can I Help?"

        1.3
        Added "I'm being sued/UDRP'ed about a domain name I registered. Can you help me?"

        1.2
        Added mention of copyright and other laws to Do you censor anything?

        1.1
        Added "I forgot my password" and "I registered at the old site, what is my username and password at the new site?"

        1.0
        Since this is version 1.0, everything is new.


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