Ask Vint Cerf
Date: Friday March 02 2001, @05:14AM
Topic: Board of Directors

Vint CerfICANN Board Chairman Vint Cerf has graciously agreed to inaugurate the (occasional) ICANNWatch Interview series.

It works like this: We announce the interview, and ask our readers to propose questions in the comment section attached to this item. We also welcome comments on questions proposed by others. When we have critical mass, or the discussion slacks off, we select a few of the ones our readers (and we) like best, then submit them in writing to the subject of the interview. He or she provides written answers at some later point, and we publish them unedited.

(Also, please feel free to suggest persons for future interviews.)

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How to Submit Comments
by michael (froomkin@lawUNSPAM.tm) on Friday March 02 2001, @09:36AM (#351)
User #4 Info | http://www.discourse.net/
Several readers have written asking how they get a new comment thread started. The answer, alas, is not as obvious as it should be: you click on the "Send your comment" button in the yellow box you will find above this comment in the right-hand column of this screen.
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Re: Ask Vint Cerf
by Jon_Weinberg on Monday March 05 2001, @04:25AM (#357)
User #16 Info | www.threecats.net
The proposed "unsponsored TLD agreements" recently posted by ICANN staff bind the new TLD registries in detail, on matters including the UDRP; a "sunrise" preference for trademark holders (with a detailed dispute resolution process of its own); fees levied by ICANN; fees paid by registrants; the registry-registrar relationship; functional and performance specifications for registry services; bulk access to zone files; whois (with ICANN control over availability, data elements, response format, query types, etc.); extensive reporting requirements; and much, much more. This regulatory regime is quite different from anything historically imposed by IANA. (Indeed, it's quite different from anything in the ICANN-ccTLD relationship today; a majority of the ccTLDs don't even run whois.) Is this sort of centralized control consistent with your vision of ICANN as a body restricted to "technical coordination"?
[ Reply to This | Parent ]
Policy v. Implementation
by lextext on Monday March 05 2001, @05:26AM (#360)
User #6 Info | http://www.lextext.com
What are the proper roles for the Supporting Organizations in creating policy, the Board in recognizing consensus policies, and the Staff in implementing those policies? At what point does an implementation detail become a policy issue that itself should be referred back to the relevant Supporting Organization for review or approval?

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Re: Ask Vint Cerf
by DavidP on Monday March 05 2001, @06:25AM (#361)
User #25 Info | http://www.davidpost.com/
This is sort of a followup regarding the selection of new TLDs. Has ICANN stated anywhere exactly what criteria it used to pick winners and losers in the competition for new TLDs? Shouldn't it use iron-clad, explicit criteria that admit of no ambiguity, so that charges of favoritism and corruption can be easily dismissed?
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Re: Ask Vint Cerf
by DavidP on Monday March 05 2001, @06:34AM (#363)
User #25 Info | http://www.davidpost.com/
I would very much like to know what 'consensus' means in ICANN's terminology. Is ICANN seriously attempting to 'govern by consensus'? There's lots of talk to that effect, but really -- is ICANN trying to develop consensus about, say, the Verisign deal? How can that possibly happen in the 10 days or so before the ICANN meeting in Melbourne? In general, do you think that ICANN gives anywhere near enough time for consensus to be devoloped on important policy questions, and, if not, shouldn't we conclude that it is not serious about the consensus model?
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Re: Ask Vint Cerf
by tbyfield (reversethis-{moc.xinap} {ta} {dleifybt}) on Monday March 05 2001, @08:01PM (#369)
User #44 Info
If the introduction of new TLDs is a "proof of concept," what concept is being proven?
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Re: Ask Vint Cerf
by tbyfield (reversethis-{moc.xinap} {ta} {dleifybt}) on Monday March 05 2001, @08:10PM (#370)
User #44 Info
ICANN describes itself as a "technical coordination body"; it has now been operating for close to two and a half years. In that time, what has ICANN accomplished that is actually technical? And -- out of the total human-hours ICANN's staff, officers, and board of directors have expended thus far -- please give a rough guesstimate of the percentage occupied by enacting those technical accomplishments.
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Re: Ask Vint Cerf
by tbyfield (reversethis-{moc.xinap} {ta} {dleifybt}) on Monday March 05 2001, @08:14PM (#371)
User #44 Info
What are the three biggest mistakes ICANN has made to date? Why and how were they mistakes?
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Re: Ask Vint Cerf
by tbyfield (reversethis-{moc.xinap} {ta} {dleifybt}) on Monday March 05 2001, @08:29PM (#372)
User #44 Info
ICANN CEO Mike Roberts described the Internet Democracy Project (composed in part of CPSR, the ACLU, and EPIC) as "bitter" and accused them of "throwing rocks" and "wide-eyed utopianism." At the Pacific Telecommunications Council conference, he said, "every citizen on the Net feels they have been empowered to challenge what [ICANN does], and I think we should be able to get on with our jobs without organized undermining of what we're doing." Other such examples abound. ICANN's "Senior Policy Officer" Andrew McLaughlin recently described those who were concerned with the disposition of the .org gTLD as "hyperventilating"; he, too, has made many other remarks that would lead a reasonable person to think that he takes a dim view of those who question ICANN's actions. Can you think of any examples in which ICANN's staff or officers have used similar language to describe advocates of strong intellectual property provisions for the DNS? Do you feel that these remarks are evenly applied? If not -- and as an attentive follower of ICANN I don't believe you can -- why should anyone believe that ICANN's staff and officers are impartial?
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Re: Ask Vint Cerf
by singe (singe no@spam outer.net) on Tuesday March 06 2001, @04:40AM (#375)
User #48 Info | http://www.caffeine.net/singe
I may be painfully stupid, but it seems to me that DNS itself needs an overhaul. hostname.domain.TLD is just not human enough for the needs of the general populace. Why not invest all this time, effort and money in coming up with a truly novel "proof of concept," i.e. natural language addressing on the Internet. There have been some feeble stabs at it by various search engines and directories, but for it to really work would take the kind of orchestrated research effort that a body like ICANN could sponsor and help along. Wouldn't the Internet be a lot better off without the squabbling over gTLDs and trademarks and the like, and with the ability for the user to type "The Wall Street Journal" or "Grameen Bank" or "Yahoo!" into their browser and get a web page in return?
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Re: Ask Vint Cerf
by lextext on Sunday March 04 2001, @05:30PM (#356)
User #6 Info | http://www.lextext.com
The vote didn't fall short. Some of the proposals lacked the requisite number of votes in the straw poll, but the Board members had obviously agreed ahead of time to put minor differences aside and ratify all TLDs unanimously that had achieved some kind of rough consensus. This was not a violation of the Bylaws.

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