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Existence of this comment period demonstrate new gTLDs proposal was half-baked

  • To: "comments-closed-generic-05feb13@xxxxxxxxx" <comments-closed-generic-05feb13@xxxxxxxxx>
  • Subject: Existence of this comment period demonstrate new gTLDs proposal was half-baked
  • From: George Kirikos <gkirikos@xxxxxxxxx>
  • Date: Tue, 5 Feb 2013 18:35:11 -0800 (PST)

Comments on "Closed Generic" gTLD Applications

Submitted By: George Kirikos
Company: Leap of Faith Financial Services Inc.
Company URL: http://www.leap.com/
Date: February 5, 2013

The very existence of this comment period, seeking late guidance regarding 
"closed generic" gTLD applications, demonstrates convincingly that the ICANN 
Board pushed through a half-baked proposal, with artificial deadlines promoting 
the interests of insiders, rather than waiting until there was a thorough 
community consensus around a solid plan. Now the chickens should come home to 
roost. 

It's time to seriously consider abandoning the new gTLDs plan, refund the 
application fees, and go with another approach. Unlike the Boeing 787 
Dreamliner which was grounded due to battery issues, the ICANN new gTLD plan 
has never taken flight, and should be relegated to the scrap heap of history 
before it causes damage to the community.

Experts like Tim Berners-Lee had warned ICANN that new gTLDs were a bad idea:

http://www.w3.org/DesignIssues/TLD

http://forum.icann.org/lists/competition-pricing-prelim/msg00016.html


ICANN ignored this expert advice, and the advice of many other entities. ICANN 
is in litigation at present over .XXX. Universities, colleges, and many other 
groups wasted millions of dollars to reserve .xxx domains that they *didn't* 
want to resolve. From the perspective of ICANN, they probably consider .xxx a 
success --- just like those who think vandals breaking windows are "good for 
the economy" because vandalism creates jobs for those making and installing new 
glass.


We continue to believe that a more orderly approach to the introduction of new 
gTLDs (which we continue to oppose) could have been accomplished using our 
"Ascended TLDs" model, as discussed at:

http://forum.icann.org/lists/irt-draft-report/msg00016.html


This would have been a far more elegant approach, and much less controversial 
than the incomplete and flawed system adopted by ICANN that served the 
interests of ICANN insiders who lobbied for a plan that ignored the public 
interest. ICANN only considered its own plan, pushed by its insiders, and gave 
no consideration to other plans produced by the community. That was wrong.

By abandoning the current new gTLD plan, ICANN can recognize that it needs more 
time to "get things right" rather than cut corners and "do things fast." The 
"damage", if any, would mainly be felt by ICANN insiders, which is somewhat 
poetic justice. There would not be damage felt by the public by abandoning the 
plan now, recognizing that the current path has been a mistake. As Tim 
Berners-Lee rightly stated:

"The root of the domain name system is a single public resource, by design. Its 
control must be for and, indirectly, by the people as a whole. To give away a 
large chunk of this to a private group would be simply a betrayal of the public 
trust put in ICANN."  

Just like ICANN "got it wrong" with the VeriSign .com agreement (which was 
amended by the DOC/NTIA), ICANN has it wrong with the current new TLDs plan. 
ICANN does not appear to have any "metrics" that recognize its own failures. 
When one doesn't own a ruler, every measurement can be declared a "success." 
ICANN never declared their version of the VeriSign contract a "failure", just 
like ICANN does not consider the new TLDs plan to be a failure. It's time to 
buy ICANN a ruler from Staples or Office Depot, and declare the new TLDs plan a 
failure.

I call upon the GAC, NTIA, DOC, and DOJ to open up their own independent public 
comment periods, unfiltered by ICANN staff "summaries", so they can chart a new 
direction. 

Sincerely,

George Kirikos
http://www.leap.com/



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