ICANN Defraud: The Fraud of the ICANN New TLD Process.
While the abuse and unethical
conduct taking place with the rollout of .info and .biz must not be allowed to continue
and those responsible need to be held accountable the public must understand that
these events are but the growth of the rotten seeds planted by the corrupt weed called
ICANN or known by it’s scientific reference as (corruptus maximus) These growing
weeds stem from the malignant new TLD process where you will find fraud is present.
October of 2000, http://www.icann.com/ the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names
and Numbers received 44 applications each seeking to introduce and operate at least
one new Top Level Domain.
The process was controversial
from the start as ICANN decided a $50,0000 Non-refundable application fee would be
a requirement, when questioned about such an unusually high and non-refundable fee
ICANN stated that it would be necessary to cover the costs associated with an applicant
in the process. In essence $50,000 was determined a sufficient amount as if an applicant
were one of the chosen applicants.
It is obvious that those actually chosen would
represent a larger amount of the expenses incurred on a per applicant basis as they
would continue into the finalization phase of the process but why did ICANN set the
fee as if every applicant would enter the final phase?
Many argued that such a
high fee was discriminatory towards non-commercial applicants who perhaps couldn't
take a gamble with such an uncertain outcome due in large part to a process that
lacked well-stated objective criteria.
In reality, an applicant couldn’t determine
where they stood.
Although such criteria was suspiciously absent, many companies
must have been confident that they were qualified otherwise; they would not have
submitted an application along with the $50,0000
Perhaps the applicants should
have refused to participate under such questionable circumstances and shouldn’t have
until it could be determined the process was clear and unambiguous however considering
the difficulty and length of time a majority of the applicants have endured in getting
to actual inclusion in the A Root, some might have figured they risk more by not
participating at all.
There is no question in my mind that ICANN’s approach to
this process took full advantage of the circumstances surrounding this issue. Their
actions appear more like a monopolistic supplier than an impartial overseer.
principal reason behind the formation of ICANN was to introduce competition into
the domain market; a market controlled solely by Network Solutions now owned by Verisign.
One particular facet of the plan to break up the Network Solutions monopoly was through
the introduction of additional TLDs, which would allow the consumer more choice in
TLDs, pricing and service. On the other side of the equation are the entrepreneurs
seeking to be the actual “competition”.
Ironically many of the very same applicants
of the ICANN process were also those who lent their support to ICANN during it’s
formation, as they believed in the proposed idea of ICANN and it’s principles. Unfortunately
the reality of ICANN is far different than the proposed “idea” and as far as the
“principles” of ICANN Well, they have none.
These same applicants now find that
actually nothing has changed regarding the “barrier to entry” they have been fighting
against other than the date and time. The fact is they were deceived by ICANN who
I deem a Trojan horse of the DNS as they purport to be one thing but are another.
the applications were made public one application in particular, the Afilias application
caught the attention of numerous people who then raised some legitimate concerns.
Afilias was formed by and is comprised of 19 registrars that between them collectively
represent 10 million domain name registrations, a very significant amount of the
domain market, companies such as Network Solutions and Register.com are it's two
largest members. This is most peculiar considering the idea is to open competition,
not plant what appears to be the seed of a larger monopoly. It was also noted that
the $50,0000 fee Afilias paid was to split between the 19 making it inconsequential
as their inclusion in the new cartel will surely guarantee their success.
continually states they are an open and transparent bottom up organization built
on consensus. The recent claim to shame sprouting from ICANN is their assertion of
being the protectors of the "public trust".
The words sound sweet and look
great on paper but that is about all it’s worth.
ICANN has grown comfortable
over the years making such misleading statements.
ICANN is made up of a board
of directors that gets their "consensus" from their three supporting organizations
who it so happens actually elect the directors.
The ensuing story is related
to one of the ICANN Supporting Organizations called the Domain Name Supporting Organization
or DNSO for short. The DNSO is comprised of various constituencies and who are these
constituencies? Simply, big business interests other than one unfortunate non-commercial
The "public" need not apply. I repeat the Public need not apply.
The public was promised a real voice in ICANN but it has never materialized and
has only been thwarted every step of the way but that issue in itself is better suited
for it’s own story.
So here’s where it gets real interesting, when the applications
were made public, people quickly noticed that Ken Stubbs, then chairman of the Names
Council part of the Domain Name Supporting Organization of ICANN was directly involved
in a number of applications through his various personal interests as you will soon
see. i.e. He is on the board of Afilias!
There was an uproar from many over this
however ICANN simply ignored these concerns by not even addressing them. As the process
continued the applications were "reviewed" by the staff of ICANN who then presented
a report on each applicant to the board of directors who would then base their decisions
in large part to these staff reports.
Within hours of the public release of the
Staff reports, many applicants became very concerned to put it mildly over the content
and inexcusable conclusions of the ICANN staff. The staff reports contained outright
erroneous information or simply omitted the facts, if not a combination of both.
As if those two things weren’t bad enough the most despicable action taken by the
ICANN staff was when they would single out certain aspects of an application for
scorn and then had the audacity to praise the similar if not the identical aspects
of another application.
Not only were most applicants subjected to an unfair review
but to boot their pleas requesting attention to the inaccuracies before the board
voted were simply ignored.
The conduct of the ICANN staff in itself denied the
applicants a fair and honest process.
This farce resulted in the most likely revenue
generating TLDs being handed to the biggest established players. Today we are already
witnessing some of the results of the inherently corrupt process. The most obvious
being. info and .biz however look at .pro these people have been unable to launch
a registry yet they were awarded a TLD, so much for pros.
Another aspect that
contributed to a process being anything but fair and honest is ICANN’s decision to
stick to the “timetable”, a decision made at the expense of the applicants they were
to serve. The fact is ICANN admits that the timetable was based on the projections
of a much smaller number of applicants and still they were inflexible on this when
it was very apparent that their projections were wrong. While they advocated the
importance of sticking to a flawed schedule I find it ironic and hypocritical how
unimportant the “timetable” appears to be now, because if you were aware all the
contracts of the chosen applicants were to be finalized by December 31, 2000. That’s
right, I said “2000”, so much for the timetable. Guess who is responsible for the
“finalization” phase? The ICANN Staff!
ICANN Lawyer and Vice President Louis
Touton and Staff should be fired.
It is quite evident while the ICANN staff
was allowed to pass what they might like to call judgment about applicants it is
they who are truly incompetent because here we are in September 2001 and not one
single TLD is ready for full operation but instead we are being victimized by ICANN’s
own doing regarding .info and .biz I find it difficult to believe that ICANN, Afilias,
Nuelevel and their high priced lawyers could ever legitimately claim they didn’t
know this could happen. The public pointed out these problems beforehand, even on
these very boards. ICANN in an attempt to feign ignorance and avoid responsibility
will call it part of their “proof of concept” just as many have predicted. The real
danger of this is ICANN like a fox will use it to impede the introduction of additional
new TLDs by claiming failure on the first round. ICANN is not what they purport to
be, let us not consider their words but consider their actions to date. If you do
just that than you will see them as they are, a front for Verisign! Follow the money
people, Follow the money.
To sum it up, it was simply a dishonest and unfair process
from start to finish that was built on Conflict of Interest and you, I and the applicants
cheated are the victims, but not Ken Stubbs and associates,
Ken Stubbs and
those directly associated with him benefited the most while 37 applicants were cheated
out of $50,000 not to mention any other expenses they would incur
There were 44
applications submitted to ICANN and only 7 or 15% were chosen.
Of the 7 TLDs
chosen 3 of them .Info,.Aero and .Museum are directly linked to Ken Stubbs and/or
his associates. One other TLD .biz was awarded to Neulevel, were Melbourne IT has
an equity interest. This should come under suspicion because Melbourne IT is also
a member of CORE and is a big established player.
Mr. Ken Stubbs very public
role as Chairman of the Names
Council Of the DNSO (Domain Name Supporting Organization)
and participation in numerous new TLD applications must
facts below make it quite clear
Kenyon Stubbs, Board member of Afilias Chairman
Executive Committee, CORE; Vice President Domain Bank;
the ICANN Names Council, VP & Director of
iDomain, Inc. (Another Applicant)
This page provides the disclosure of
all CORE involvement in the various applications.
almost certain this information was not present until
after the selections
Current members of the Executive Committee
Mr. Ken Stubbs,
Dr. Jonathan Robinson, member of Executive Committee
Luc Collignon, member of Executive Committee
Mr. Hal Lubsen, member of Executive
Ms. Rosa Delgado, member of Executive Committee, .Aero
F. Connelly, member of Executive Committee,
Mr. Werner Staub, member
of Executive Committee and Head
of CORE Secretariat, .Museum
Domains Chosen by ICANN that have strong ties
to KEN Stubbs and associates
Kenyon Stubbs, One of 13 Afilias board members,
Chairman of the Executive Committee,
President Domain Bank; Chairman of the ICANN Names
Council,VP & Director of iDomain, Inc. (Another
Mr. Robert F. Connelly, member of Executive
Committee of CORE, Afilias board
member and the
management of Procurement Services International (Japan),
one of the 19 registrars of Afilias
INFO: Mr. Hal Lubsen, President of Afilias,
Executive Committee of CORE and Is an Officer, Director
of idomains. Part owner and management of
Domain Bank one of the nineteen registrars
.AERO: Rosa Delgado is currently a member of the
of CORE and of the Business
Constituency of ICANN. SITA Director Internet Industry
Relations, is also a member of the Internet Society
(ISOC) Board of Trustees
Core is registry operator, agreement signed by
Werner Staub of the Executive
Committee of CORE
Level Domain Chosen by ICANN where CORE is affiliated
and special note that a
competing .biz application was
submitted on behalf of idomains, a company Ken
Henry Lubsen of CORE are officers and directors
.BIZ: was awarded
to Neulevel, Melbourne IT a CORE
It should be noted that idomains
was an applicant for
.biz,.ebiz and.ecom as well. Here is the management of
full names and positions of all officers, directors,
Henry A. Lubsen, Jr.
Kenyon T. Stubbs
Michael D. Palage
M. Scott Hemphill
Henry A. Lubsen, Jr., President
Steve Heflin, Vice President
Stubbs, Vice President
M. Scott Hemphill, Vice President & General Counsel
Level Domains Not Chosen by ICANN with Ken Stubbs and
was a proposal by CORE acting as the Sponsoring
organization and registry operator
The Listed management
is CORE and it's Executive Committee
is the proposed registry operator made of
the same Executive committee and Werner
Staub signing the
The fact is that the 7 choices of ICANN are terrible
In every survey ever conducted not one of these TLDs faired
so even this ICANN couldn't do right.
I followed the process closely and it was
anything but fair.
Think about in this light for a moment.
Ken Stubbs and
his cohorts stand to make millions and I ask you this If
this was let's suppose
a situation where the federal, state or local govt was accepting applications or
bids for a project or projects and subsequently we come to find that most of the
projects if not all went to some of the very people who are part of or directly associated
with people in the organization that awards the projects.
What would you deem
It would be an immediate scandal!
You know they have a name for this sort
of behavior, It’s called graft!
Remember that $50,000 per application? Soon
after the 7 were chosen, people started asking about the couple million dollars that
should be remaining. One
representative of ICANN was quoted in the news that
refunds look very possible and that more TLDs could be
chosen from among the
remaining applications during the March 2001 ICANN meeting No sooner than it probably
took the ink to dry on the story we observed an about face and then ICANN president
Michael Roberts stated that the funds were spoken for to fund the cost of the 7 chosen
Could those not chosen be anymore insulted and disrespected?
participated and submitted $50,000 in good faith with the understanding that the
fee was as such to cover the full costs as if they were chosen but only to find they
were subjected to a dishonest and unfair process and that there money was used to
Where did $2,000,000 go? I have yet to see an audited and itemized
accounting of these funds. Where's the transparency and the openness?
Keep in mind
that ICANN is represented by a large and powerful law firm called Jones Day through
their attorney Joe Sims whose name has surrounded every major controversy dating
to the formation of ICANN itself. It is no wonder that Vice President and Counsel
of ICANN Louis Touton in charge of the ICANN staff was formerly employed at Jones
Day. The bulk of the revenue from the new TLD process flows directly to the Jones
Day coffers. The conduct surrounding the relationship between ICANN and Jones Day
is very suspect and needs to be considered seriously in any investigation. Jones
Day reminds me of some real life sinister version of the law firm from the television
series the Three Stooges aptly named Dewey, Cheatem, and Howe
And as a testament
to the ever present unfairness of ICANN, the new
ICANN president Stuart Lynn
arrogantly and in violation of ICANN's own
by-laws issued a policy that would
for instance disqualify some of the remaining 37 applicants for further consideration
because they operate Top Level Domains on an "alternative root". In spite of the
fact that these operations pre-date ICANN's very existence by years yet the applicants
remitted $50,000 in good faith and ICANN made no mention of it before in fact as
part of the circus they called a fair and honest process they discussed such applicants
for window dressing but they did discuss them which only proves what Mr. Lynn and
his paper are, a fraud!
Just maybe and I do mean maybe the injustices surrounding
.info and .biz will be halted but even if they are it still leaves the weed to remain
to grow and you can be sure that this will cause other problems looking into the
A smart gardener means you can’t just clip a couple weeds because that
only solves the problem temporarily. To be a smart gardener you have to attack it
at the root.
The only way to attack and avoid these problems is to be a smart
gardener and pull ICANN and the elements that influence them i.e. Jones Day, Verisign
from the ROOT. If that can be done you will get a big green thumbs up from the world.