[bc-gnso] ICANN hearings

Phil Corwin psc at vlaw-dc.com
Wed Dec 7 23:18:28 UTC 2011


Where did you find the testimony? I've been checking the Senate Commerce website hearing notice at http://commerce.senate.gov/public/index.cfm?p=Hearings&ContentRecord_id=22f4a71e-93e9-4711-acec-3ed7f52277cc&ContentType_id=14f995b9-dfa5-407a-9d35-56cc7152a7ed&Group_id=b06c39af-e033-4cba-9221-de668ca1978a&MonthDisplay=12&YearDisplay=2011 and have yet to find any links to witness statements.

As to your larger point, I never understood why it had to be a program of unlimited new gTLDs rather than some discrete number, or why there couldn't at least have been a limited rollout in the first round to demonstrate proof of concept. It has always been the prospect of hundreds, or even thousands of new gTLDs being added near-simultaneously that has generated the intense debate within ICANN as well as the intense opposition of outside forces. Also, having attended the TM Clearinghouse briefing in Dakar as well as being on the first two Implementation Advisory Group calls that some of these protections will be damn hard to achieve -- TMC seems to require establishing something akin to a initial global TM database, which doesn't exist at present, in the next 12 months.

That said, I'm not sure that anything short of litigation can halt or reopen the program at this stage. 

Best to all,

Philip S. Corwin, Founding Principal
Virtualaw LLC
1155 F Street, NW
Suite 1050
Washington, DC 20004
"Luck is the residue of design" -- Branch Rickey

-----Original Message-----
From: owner-bc-gnso at icann.org [mailto:owner-bc-gnso at icann.org] On Behalf Of Mike Roberts
Sent: Wednesday, December 07, 2011 5:38 PM
To: bc - GNSO list
Subject: [bc-gnso] ICANN hearings

Reading over today's testimony, one can't help but have the feeling that ICANN is digging itself deeper and deeper into a bunker position from which it may not recover.

I'm reminded of the gigantic underground cistern located near the Blue Mosque in Istanbul.   Worth a trip if you haven't seen it.

After the collapse of the Roman Empire, the Goths and so on came down the peninsula and ravaged the city.  So walls were built.   Then sieges were put in place and folks ran out of water.  So at great expense the cistern was dug and covered over.   Then longer sieges, etc.  The invaders prevailed.

The moral being that some ideas are so flawed that no amount of building walls thicker and cisterns deeper will carry the day.

The Kurt Pritz testimony goes on for more than 15 pages trying to cover every possible contingency of bad behavior connected to new TLDs.   And doesn't succeed.

Even though the BC membership includes members with multiple relationships to ICANN, some of which are linked to proposed new TLDs, the core rationale for our constituency is to represent business users of the Domain Name System.   Setting aside IDNs, which have their own rationale, I haven't seen any enthusiasm for new TLDs among users, and most of us have been opposed but willing to work on the details with ICANN because that seemed better than letting it happen without any input from us.   What we have gotten for our trouble is Kurt claiming in his testimony that there is broad community support for new TLDs.  That has never been the case.

The ever greater accretion of protective bureaucracy to the program has produced a balance of costs and benefits - in the broad sense, including more than dollars and cents - that is seriously out of whack.   It's time for us to acknowledge this, and say so publicly.

- Mike

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