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Allow Afilias to allocate 1-2 character .info. This is a good idea

  • To: info-scsld-amendment@xxxxxxxxx
  • Subject: Allow Afilias to allocate 1-2 character .info. This is a good idea
  • From: Jothan Frakes <jothan@xxxxxxxxxx>
  • Date: Tue, 23 Feb 2010 17:10:54 -0800

I have been pleased to see the trend of the relaxation of
restrictions, at the second level, of 1 and 2 character domains.

Afilias' proposal to allocate 1 and 2 character .info domains looks
prudent and responsible.  The use of RFP / Proposal and other careful
allocation plans that they have identified seem smart and well
thought.    I believe they should be allowed to do this.

Additionally, these domains can add benefit to the community through
their use and responsible allocation, as presented.

Here are three reasons to allow 1 and 2 character domains to be released:

1]  Six other gTLDs have had these restrictions lifted and have since
began allocation of the names.
The TLDs are .BIZ,  .CAT, .COOP, .MOBI,. NAME, and .PRO.  There is no
reason that .INFO should not be treated equally, given the method with
which they intend to responsibly allocate these names.

2] Restriction of single character domains in gTLDs in general is a
concept worth evolving from.
The act of restricting single characters is a dated concept that was
put in place as a placeholder, so that these would be available to
horizontally expand the namespace at one point and do registrations at
the third level in the gTLDS.

This plan and action never practically occurred.  I understand the
conceived plan was to have registrations happen under a.com, b.com,
j.net at the third level to help move past the need to add new TLDs as
quickly.  Though a good concept in principle, the plan came after some
legacy allocations had already happened of single character domains in
com, net, and org (CNO).

Attempting such horizonal expansion would not be possible in an
elegant manner with a portion of the single character domains
allocated in CNO.  Clawing these back from registrants to attempt
horizontal expansion of the namespace is something that would be
sharply unwise.  And thus the plan stalled.  And this was many years

We since have 2 (and god willing soon more) rounds releasing new TLDs.

Between the premise of the restrictions and why they were made and the
introduction of new TLDs, the restriction on single character SLD is
no longer practically justified.

While I respect that there was good intentions and a smart idea behind
the 'why' of reserving these at the first level such restrictions
would be made, it seems a fair time to let go of this restriction now
that over a decade has passed without the plan being re-visited, and
there have been solutions to the 'problem' it was intended to solve
that have rendered this restriction worth a revisit.

2] The 2 character limit seems to be in place for ccTLD / ISO 3166-1 list(s)
This is a concept that is wise at the root level.  With a four
character TLD, there is very little if any likelihood that .INFO, 2
character names whois be confused with a ccTLD.  For example, it seems
to me unlikely that ie.info would be mistaken for a .ie domain name.

With respect to 2 character restrictions, these seem to also be a
legacy restriction that is worth revisiting to determine if it is
appropriate in general in new TLDs, but given that Afilias has
identified a fairly responsible manner of allocation, the restriction
seems to be worth eliminating in .info.

I see no reason not to approve lifting the 1-2 character restrictions,
and I encourage the board to allow the release of these names.


In a personal capacity


Jothan Frakes
Tel: +1.206-355-0230
Fax: +1.206-201-6881

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