[alac] ICANN, oppressor of downtrodden minorities
- To: "ALAC" <alac@xxxxxxxxx>
- Subject: [alac] ICANN, oppressor of downtrodden minorities
- From: "John R Levine" <johnl@xxxxxxxx>
- Date: 5 Jul 2005 21:34:19 -0400
Did that get your attention? Oh, good.
We've been discussing the political disaster that is .cat, the new domain
for speakers of Catalan. The board apparently invented a new rule that
all affected governments have to approve any such applications.
OK, I asked, how about if ETA applied for a .eus domain? No doubt the
Spanish government would say no. What if the applicant were a politically
innocous group, say the Bilbao Chamber of Commerce? The Spanish
government would probably still say no. So now is the rule that only
linguistic groups without extremist factions get domains, even if the
extremists aren't the ones asking for the domain?
What if they got an application for .kurd, and Iraq and Iran said yes,
Turkey and Syria, said no. Are the eastern Kurds denied a domain anyway?
What if the application were just from Iraqi Kurds, and the Iraq
government says OK. Now what happens?
How about a .iroquois domain, for speakers of languages of the Iroquois
tribes in the US and Canada? Most of them have treaties with the US and
Canada signed 200 years ago, and deny that US and CA have authority over
them, a position that the US accepts to the extent that the tribes can do
things like run casinos even though non-Indians can't. Who decides
whether to consult US or CA?
Or how about a .turk domain, for speakers of Turkic languages ranging from
Turkey in the west to the Uighurs in China to the east, and about a dozen
countries of widely varying governmental styles in between. Is there any
way they could have a domain? Or are linguistic domains only for groups
that all live in a single country where they don't feel very oppressed?
I don't claim to be a particularly deep political analyst, but if I can
see all these scenarios in five minutes, there must be a hundred more, all
of which show ICANN (correctly) to have a policy of favoring oppressive
governments over their linguistic minorities. Is that really a good