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Username: UNI
Date/Time: Mon, October 16, 2000 at 1:58 PM GMT
Browser: Netscape Communicator V4.51 using Windows NT
Score: 5
Subject: Support for .union


Union Network International (UNI) which represents 15 million workers in over 140 countries in more than 900 unions, has joined with the ICFTU other International Trade Union Secretariat's and TUAC in proceeding with this proposal to ICANN, for the setting up of a ".union" top-level domain (tld) on the Internet, to be managed by trade unions, for trade unions.

A dot.union TLD would give unions Internet addresses with a distinct trade union identity, as an alternative to existing addresses, using ".com", or ".org", or country-based addresses such as ".uk", ".de" or ".za".   The proposal also includes provisions to make the TLD function in all ICFTU official languages (eg. ".union", ".syndicat", ".sindicato", ".gewerkschaft").
UNI sees this an an essential move to make the Internet more accesible  and functional for trade unions and union members.  If the Internet is to be the truly universal medium, as currently claimed, then there has to be the development of a wider range of tld's.  Further the access and control of the registration of tld's must be vested in groups such as the ICFTU which is sponsoring this intiative.  The governance of the Internet and its domain names must be made more inclusive and must include the ability for sectors of civil society to have much more say than in the past.

That is why this proposal, which is the only real application from civil society at this stage, must be supported.  I urge the ICANN Board of Directors to support this application.  It is essential for unions and it is essential for the future of the Internet.

Philip Jennings
General Secretary


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