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Nom-Com Appoints Independent and Diverse Candidates to ICANN Leadership Positions

When 72 candidates vie for 8 positions, making tough choices are inevitable. ICANN's 2005 Nominating Committee (Nom-Com) on Friday announced the selection of a diverse and independent set of nominees for important roles in ICANN, including the Board of Directors, the Generic Names Supporting Organization (GNSO), the At-Large Advisory Council (ALAC) and the Country Code Names Supporting Organization (ccNSO). more

Whither DNS?

The Domain Name System is often though of as an integral part of the Internet. Without it, how can you ever locate anything? Well, quite easily, thank you very much. DNS is used implicitly for many services, such as web browsing. It also includes explicit extensions for a few applications such as e-mail. (I'm talking here about DNS the system, not DNS the technology that can be re-purposed to things like ENUM.) But the most notable thing about DNS is its receding importance... more

Regime Change on the Internet: Conference Notes

"Regime Change on the Internet? Internet Governance after WGIG" was the first public event held in the United States on July 28, 2005 to review the UN Working Group on Internet Governance (WGIG) report. Here are my notes from the event: "Markus Kummer, Executive Coordinator, UN Working Group on Internet Governance, reminded the audience that the mandate of the WGIG was specifically articulated by the first part of the WSIS - "To investigate and make proposals for action as appropriate". It was not for sweeping regime change as the conference title would suggest." more

A Balkanized Internet Future?

Joi Ito has an important post [also featured on CircleID] on how the internet is in danger of becoming balkanized into separate "internets". He's not the only person who's concerned. Greg Walton worries about Regime Change on the Internet. My friend Tim Wu, a law professor specializing in international trade and intellectual property, has written an article for Slate: The Filtered Future: China's bid to divide the Internet... more

Do Not Enter - It’s XXX

There soon will be a central place for Web surfers to dwell in a forbidden cyber land of adult fantasies, sex, dark rituals and total taboos. Finally, ICANN has given in to the pressure and has tossed a big rock across the turbulent e-commerce ocean. It has approved a new suffix, .xxx, for adult-only porn sites, creating ripples and debates in ever so confusing global cyber branding times when cyber global domain name challenges are being fought in the complex earthly trademark realities. Three things are bound to happen... more

ICANN, WSIS and the Making of a Global Civil Society - Part III

For a book project I decided to extend my interview with Milton Mueller from November 2003 (Part I | Part II). Exclusively for CircleID readers, here's part III that deals with WSIS, WGIG, US-American bias and the Internet Governance Project. "...One good result of the WGIG process is that the involved international community has already moved beyond those cliches. No one is proposing that the UN control the Internet. There is growing consensus that control of the DNS root needs to be internationalized..." more

Some Notes on the .XXX Top-Level Domain

Yesterday the ICANN board discussed and approved ICANN staff to enter into negotiations with ICM Registry, Inc. for the .XXX Top Level Domain (TLD). I'm sure there will be a longer more complete presentation from ICANN later about this, but as an individual board member I thought I'd post a quick note before people got carried away with speculation based on a lack of information. more

Spirit of .Pro, Where Art Thou?

On March 2, EnCirca launched its ProForwarding leasing service for .pro domains. When we launched the service, we were sure that the ProForwarding service would appeal to a segment of the internet community not being served well by other extensions: self-employed professionals and other small businesses. Based on the response we've received, it appears we were right. It also caught the attention of ICANN and others, who accused us of "violating the spirit of .pro". Does .pro even have a spirit? And if it does, who gets to decide what it is? more

Whois Privacy vs. Anonymity

The Internet is often a lawless place. Everyone knows that there are many tricks and traps lurking on the Internet, just waiting to prey on unsuspecting and innocent users. Some of these traps will trash your computer while others will turn your PC into a zombie that will broadcast messages at the virus writer's command. ...The list of annoyances and downright criminal activities seem endless. ...To make the Internet a safer place both legislators and law enforcement are now focusing on the Internet. In the crossfire that's taking place there are many ideas that are being offered up. Some of them are good and some are not. One bad decision that was recently forced upon the Internet community (without hearings -- more on this later) was to eliminate private domain name registrations for .US domain names. ...It's important to understand the difference between privacy and anonymity. more

Domain Owners Lose Privacy

As facts unfold, and the NTIA's decision to take away our privacy comes to light, it is interesting to see the NTIA struggling to explain its decision. Keep in mind that an "as yet to be identified" bureaucrat made this decision to take away your privacy, did it without notice, and without holding hearings. Those affected were not given an opportunity to explain how the loss of privacy would negatively affect them. Quite simply, this is NOT how our government is supposed to work. We should be outraged... more