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Username: lsherrmann
Date/Time: Mon, October 30, 2000 at 2:22 PM GMT
Browser: Microsoft Internet Explorer V5.01 using Windows 95
Score: 5
Subject: .co-op


  On behalf of the 9700 members of Butler Rural Electric Cooperative, I am writing to urge the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) to approve the proposal for a .co-op top-level domain. The National cooperative Business Association (NCBA) and Poptel are proposing .co-op with the full endorsement of the International Cooperative Alliance.

Butler Rural Electric Cooperative is a non-profit electric utility in southwestern Ohio. In additional to electric service, we are an Internet service provider.  The Cooperative also provides rebates and incentives for energy-efficient water heaters and heating systems. My role at the Cooperative is to promote our marketing programs and also to maintain our high quality customer service.

As a consumer-owned electric cooperative, Butler Rural Electric Cooperative works hard to provide our members with the best services possible.  And we follow the International Cooperative Alliance cooperative principles, such as member ownership and control.  That makes our job more challenging than investor-owned businesses, but it has also earned us the trust of the people we serve.

As consumers become increasingly cynical about the constant ebb and flow of new and defunct e-businesses, its critical that cooperative businesses have an opportunity to identify themselves to consumers and others who prefer to do business with us.  While many cooperatives use .com and .org, neither accurately characterizes co-ops to Internet users.  Consumers need a way to find the businesses they trust on the Internet.  The co-op TLD will help do that.

I urge you to move quickly to approve .co-op.

Lisa Staggs Herrmann
Manager of Member and Community Relations
Butler Rural Electric Cooperative
3888 Stillwell Beckett Rd.
Oxford, OH 45056 


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