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ICANN's Board of Directors met on 31 October 2003 in Carthage, Tunisia.
The Board adopted the following resolutions:
Approval of .INFO Redemption Grace Period
Whereas, in resolution 02.83, the Board authorized the President and General Counsel to conduct negotiations on behalf of ICANN toward appropriate revisions to agreements between ICANN and the unsponsored TLD registry operators to implement the proposed Redemption Grace Period applicable to registry operators in a manner consistent with an implementation proposal submitted by a Technical Steering Group on 7 June 2002;
Whereas, ICANN staff has reported to the Board that negotiations have been completed with Afilias, the operator of the .info registry, for amendments to Appendices C, G, O, and T of the .info registry agreement to provide for implementation of the Redemption Grace Period within the .info top-level domain in substantial conformity with the 7 June 2002 Technical Steering Group proposal, and has recommended that those appendices be amended accordingly, with any conforming adjustments to other appendices as may be deemed necessary or appropriate;
Whereas, the Board has reviewed the negotiated revisions to Appendices C, G, O, and T and concludes that the amendments should be approved as recommended;
Resolved [03.160] that the ICANN President and General Counsel are authorized to enter into an amendment to the .info registry agreement to include the revisions to Appendices C, G, O, and T, as well as to authorize appropriate conforming amendments to other appendices to the registry agreement as deemed necessary or appropriate.
Approval of .pro Second-Level Registration Offering
Whereas, RegistryPro, Inc. ("RegistryPro") is the registry operator for the .pro top-level domain;
Whereas, under RegistryPro's Registry Agreement as entered into with ICANN on 3 May 2002, RegistryPro is expressly permitted to propose to give .pro registrants the option of registering for second-level domain names directly in the .pro TLD;
Whereas, on 6 August 2003, ICANN received a request from RegistryPro to offer second level registrations in .pro in cases where registrants provide multiple services or would like register on the second-level with a redirect to the third-level professional designator that corresponds to their professional area;
Whereas the RegistryPro proposal specifies that the registrants at the second level would be required to meet all of the registration restrictions set forth in Appendix L to the .pro Registry Agreement;
Whereas the RegistryPro Advisory Board has provided a statement of support for the RegistryPro proposal, indicating that proposed second level .pro registrations will eliminate existing obstacles and enhance the appeal of .pro to the distribution channel, while continuing to uphold the existing eligibility requirements and restrictions;
Whereas, based on a review of the proposal, the Board has determined it is unlikely the legitimate interests of others could be harmed by the implementation of the proposal by RegistryPro to offer the second level registration product;
Whereas, ICANN's Registry Agreement with RegistryPro allows such agreement to be amended by the mutual consent of the two parties;
Resolved [03.161], that the ICANN President and General Counsel are authorized to negotiate and implement modifications to RegistryPro's Registry Agreement with ICANN for operation of the .pro top-level domain as deemed necessary to provide for the offering of such .pro second level registration product by RegistryPro, provided that the offering of such second level registration product by RegistryPro would be in accordance with and consistent with all other applicable contractual limitations in the Registry Agreement.
Adoption of GNSO Council Domain Deletion Policy Recommendations
Whereas, at its meeting on 24 June 2003, the GNSO Council voted unanimously to accept the Final Report of the Deletes Task Force and to forward it to the ICANN Board as a consensus-policy recommendation;
Whereas, the report was posted on the ICANN web site on 6 October 2003, with a call for public comment;
Whereas, various public comments were received and considered by the Board;
Whereas, the report was discussed at the ICANN Public Forum session held on Thursday, 30 October 2003, with public comment received;
Resolved [03.162] that the Board adopts the recommendations set forth in section 3 of the Deletes Task Force Final Report the under the heading "Recommendations"; and
Further resolved [03.163] that the ICANN President and General Counsel are authorized to take steps to implement those policy recommendations by consulting as appropriate with registry operators, registrars, and other knowledgeable parties and through amendments and notices, as appropriate, pursuant to ICANN’s agreements with gTLD registry operators and registrars.
Response to GNSO Council Request to Maintain Three Representatives per Constituency
Whereas, the GNSO Council has requested on 14 August 2003, that the change to the number of constituency representatives on the GNSO Council remain unchanged at three (3) representatives per constituency instead of two (2) representatives per constituency as is scheduled to occur at the end of this 2003 Annual Meeting.
Whereas, the GNSO Council’s predecessor organization DNSO Names Council requested on 1 August 2002, that the GNSO Council be made up of three (3) representatives per constituency.
Whereas, Article I, Section 2 (4) sets out as a core value that: -"Seeking and supporting broad, informed participation reflecting the functional, geographic, and cultural diversity of the Internet at all levels of policy development and decision-making.”
Whereas, Article XX, Section 5 (8), in setting out the originally proposed transition that: "In the absence of further action on the topic by the New Board, each of the GNSO constituencies shall select two representatives to the GNSO Council…."
Whereas, the Board wishes to take action in support of the GNSO Council and in response to the GNSO Council’s request.
Resolved [03.164] to change the transition article (Article XX) to allow three representatives per constituency on the GNSO Council until the end of the ICANN annual meeting 2004;
Resolved [03.165] to perform a review of the GNSO Council in or around July 2004 which should include among other aspects of the review criteria, an analysis of the efficacy of having three representatives from each constituency on the GNSO Council.
New Generic TLDs
Whereas the development of an appropriate process and policy for the creation of new gTLDs has been a topic of Board and community debate since the creation of ICANN.
Whereas there is a fundamental need for a comprehensive process to move from the proof of concept test commenced with the 2000 round to the liberalization of the gTLD market.
Whereas ICANN needs to deliver this comprehensive approach to new gtlds not only in response to community demand, but also toward completion of a task agreed under ICANN’s new MoU with the U.S. Department of Commerce.
Whereas ICANN has committed to deliver, by September 2004, a comprehensive evaluation of:
a. The potential impact of new gtlds on the Internet root server system and Internet stability;
b. The creation and implementation of selection criteria for new and existing TLD registries, including public explanation of the process, selection criteria, and the rationale for selection decisions;
c. Potential consumer benefits/costs associated with establishing a competitive environment for TLD registries; and
d. Recommendations from expert advisory panels, bodies, agencies, or organizations regarding economic, competition, trademark, and intellectual property issues.
Whereas ICANN is also committed to define and implement a predictable strategy for selecting new gtlds using straightforward, transparent, and objective procedures that preserve the stability of the Internet (development of strategy is to be completed by September 30, 2004 and implementation to commence by December 31, 2004).
Whereas ICANN also needs to consider technical and operational means by which the operation of a TLD could be undertaken by another party in the event that any incident causes a particular TLD to become inoperable.
Whereas the Board recognizes that in order for ICANN to meet these timelines, the evaluation must commence almost immediately, and will require a significant proportion of ICANN resources.
Whereas the Board believes the development of this long-term policy should begin immediately in November 2003, with the timing of the presentation of reports and receipt of various inputs to occur between ICANN’s October 2003 meeting in Carthage, and March 2004 meeting in Rome.
Whereas the areas to be covered in the development of policy on TLDs include completion of the formal review of the TLDs created in the new-TLD proof of concept initiated in 2000, obtaining advice and analysis on issues pertinent to long-term policy for TLDs from expert sources, receipt and review of community input, consideration and commencement if deemed appropriate of a targeted Policy-Development Process within the Generic Names Supporting Organization, and consultation with ICANN’s Advisory Committees and other Supporting Organizations.
Whereas the final report on the success to date, and issues faced by, the TLDs created in 2000 is expected to be delivered at ICANN’s March 2004 meeting in Rome.
Whereas ICANN is aware that the TLDs selected in 2000 have faced significant acceptance problems, which should be considered and addressed, if possible. These include compatibility problems with installed software (DNS resolvers, provisioning software and end-user applications) of ISPs, corporate network operators and application providers, as well as other distribution and acceptance issues, such as registrars interested in providing domain name services with respect to a new gtld.
Whereas expert advice is expected to be sought from areas including:
- an international economics organization on the introduction of competition into the TLD market and other similar markets, allocation mechanisms and possible appropriate business models for the TLD manager-ICANN relationship;
- a review and report on intellectual property issues involved in the introduction of new gtld to be provided by the World Intellectual Property Organization;
- consumer protection issues, potentially from a consumer protection agency;
- reports from the Internet Architecture Board and ICANN’s Security and Stability Committee on technical stability issues related to the introduction of new gtlds, including planning for registry failures;
- assessment of the Internet Architecture Board on the need for additional technical standards to support multilingual TLDs.
Whereas the Board will be considering, and seeking views from experts and the community on the appropriate balance between corporate/sponsor control of a gTLD and “management on behalf of the Internet community” and with regard to clarifying and better delineating the appropriate structure and scope of the relationship between TLD operators and ICANN.
Resolved [03.166] that the Board directs the President to begin an expeditious and targeted development of strategy and policy leading to a streamlined process for the introduction of new gtlds, and
Resolved [03.167] that the Board directs the President to begin to seek community input into development of this strategy and process immediately following this meeting in Carthage, and to establish a public forum for comments on new gtld policy at <firstname.lastname@example.org>.
Resolved [03.168] that the Board has requested that a report on the new gtld policy should be completed by September 30, 2004 and the implementation of the new gtld policy shall commence before December 31, 2004.
Finalization of New sTLD RFP
Whereas the ICANN community has called upon the Board to commence long term strategic plans to launch a long term process for the creation of new gTLD’s and to act on community input already received in a timely manner.
Whereas the Board resolved in Montreal to invite public comment on the draft request for proposals for sTLDs posted on 24 June 2003, and in particular on the question whether or not the RFP should be limited to applicants who proposed sponsored sTLDs in November 2000.
Whereas, at the ICANN Board meeting held 13 October 2003, the Board discussed at length the topic of how, and within what timeframe, ICANN should proceed with the creation of new gTLDs, including sTLDs.
Whereas the GNSO has called upon the Board to go forward with the process for an interim round of sTLDs. The GNSO has discussed and commented on its desire for the Board to take action again on 29 October 2003.
Whereas the Board has heard the expression of concerns by experts and affected parties through the GNSO, and from users directly and through the ALAC.
Whereas the Board recognizes community consensus that it would be very difficult, both for practical reasons and as a matter of equitable policy, to restrict a new sTLD round to prior applicants from the 2000 round.
Whereas the Board also recognizes general community agreement that the appropriate form of sponsoring organization for new sTLDs should not necessarily be restricted to not-for-profit entities, but could include other forms of entity that otherwise meet the criteria for a sponsoring organization.
Resolved [03.169] that the Board directs the President to finalize and post no later than 15 December 2003 an open Request for Proposals for a limited number of new sTLDs, such final RFP to be based on the points of agreement indicated above and the comments received concerning the draft RFP.
Resolved [03.170] that upon the successful completion of the sTLD selection process, an agreement reflecting the commercial and technical terms shall be negotiated, although such terms may be subject to further amendment, as appropriate, as a result of the New gTLD process which is scheduled to be completed in 2004.
Resolved [03.171] that the selection process and implementation for sTLDs shall be evaluated and the results of such evaluation shall be utilized in the New gTLD process scheduled to be completed in 2004.
IDN Committee changes
Whereas, the Internationalized Domain Name Committee was established by resolution 01.94 to serve as a general coordination body for the work on policy issues related to Internationalized Domain Names (IDNs);
Whereas, the IDN Committee has issued a series of reports and recommendations regarding IDNs and related issues;
Whereas, in October 2002 the Internet Engineering Steering Group approved the publication of three proposed standards defining an application-level mechanism for IDNs;
Whereas, the ICANN community would like to thank the following IDN Committee members for their service on the IDN Committee: Masanobu Katoh (Committee Chair), Mouhamet Diop, Patrik Fältström, Qiheng Hu, John Klensin, Sang-Hyon Kyong, Stuart Lynn, Elisabeth Porteneuve, Mohd Sharil Tarmizi and Vincent Wen-Sung Chen.
Whereas, the President in consultation with the Chair of the IDN Committee formed a new President's IDN Registry Implementation Committee composed of interested registries, registrars, and technical experts to consider and exchange information on ways to resolve the issues associated with implementation of IDN capabilities in existing top level domains;
Whereas the Board requested the following individuals to serve on the President’s IDN Registry Implementation Committee, the Board would like to thank the following members: Masanobu Katoh (chair), Neil Edwards, Patrick Falstrom, Hiro Hotta, Kenny Huang, Cary Karp, Andrew McLaughlin, Ram Mohan, Hualin Qian, James Seng, Mark Blanchet, YangWoo Ko, Edmon Chung, Yann Courtel, Geir Rasmussen, Tom McGarry, and Tina Dam.
Whereas as the Chair informs the Board that the work of the IDN Committee is complete as to the current formulation of members.
Whereas the committees have successfully reached the conclusion of their work, the successful implementation of IDN will continue to involve the exchange of information on ways to resolve the issues associated with implementation of IDN capabilities in existing top level domains.
Whereas the ICANN Board wishes to express its extreme gratitude to Mr. Katoh for his services in chairing and leadership in the area of ICANN’s IDN work, beginning with the Internal Working Group, the IDN Committee and the President’s IDN Registry Implementation Committee.
Hereby resolved [03.172] to bring to a close the work of the IDN Committee, and the President’s IDN Registry Implementation Committee.
Resolved [03.173] that ICANN will continue to participate and provide guidance on the community’s work with the objective to achieve coordinated implementation of IDN.
Thanks to Masanobu Katoh
Whereas, Mr. Masanobu Katoh has served as an ICANN director since November 2000, having been chosen to represent the Asia-Pacific region in the At-Large voting process conducted in October 2000;
Whereas, prior to his service to the Board of Directors, Katoh-san served as the Asia-Pacific representative of the business constituency on the Names Council of the former Domain Name Supporting Organization (DNSO);
Whereas, Katoh-san has served with honor and distinction as Chair of the Internal Working Group created by the Board to investigate facts and identify issues that may arise concerning Internationalized Domain Names (IDNs); as Chair of the IDN Committee since its creation and until this meeting, which continued and formalized further the work for the Internal Working Group; as Chair of the President’s IDN Registry Implementation Committee composed of interested registries, registrars, and technical experts to consider and exchange information on ways to resolve the issues associated with implementation of IDN capabilities in existing top-level domains, created by the Board; as Chair of the Committee of the Board Conflicts of Interest; member of the Board Governance Committee; member of the Reconsideration Committee;
Whereas, Katoh-san served in all these functions, as well as in Board meetings and in contact with the ICANN community, with unfailing loyalty, unsinking good humor, unvanishing smile, the will to solve conflicts constructively, clarity of thought, clear sense of ICANN’s mission and priorities, and a well-centered, principles-based pragmatic approach;
Whereas, Katoh-san has been exemplary in bridging cultures: between his native Japanese and others; between his legal training and technical concerns; between business and broader social concerns, to the benefit of ICANN and its community;
Whereas, Katoh-san earned the appreciation of his fellow Directors and many in the community for the above-mentioned qualities and a friendly, open attitude;
Therefore, the Board of ICANN resolves [03.174] that the Board expresses its thankfulness and recognition for Katoh-san’s company, work, and accomplishments; and wishes him all the best success and happiness in his endeavors, together with a happy family life.
In addition to these resolutions above, the Board also held an organizational meeting in Carthage, Tunisia on 31 October 2003.