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Username: techno-will
Date/Time: Fri, March 2, 2001 at 9:22 PM GMT
Browser: Netscape Communicator V4.76 using Windows NT
Score: 5
Subject: "Original intent" of .org


        I am posting this in the hope that these messages are actually to be considered before ICANN decides future policy on the ".org" TLD.

I disagree strongly with what little I have been able to find on this proposal -- namely the removal of "inappropriate" domain names from the ".org" TLD.  Since only a few TLDs are available, trying to find an "appropriate" TLD to register a domain under is as difficult as saying "There are two kinds of people in the world...".  As you are no doubt aware, an individual wanting to register a domain name for personal use was stuck with an "inappropriate" TLD no matter which choice was made.  ".org" has been popular for several reasons, not the least of which being ease of finding available names.

I submit to you that this proposed "return to the original intent" idea is not only unfair but completely impractical.  Who is to judge if a domain "belongs" in ".org"?  How are the domain owners to be fairly notified that they are "under suspicion" of being "inappropriate"?  Will arbitration be possible or will ICANN's decisions be final?  Lawsuits will certainly follow no matter how those questions are answered.  I can imagine thousands of domains being transferred to a not-for-profit entity whose sole purpose is to hold ".org" domains for people, rendering the new policy ineffective.

Even a policy of "no new inappropriate registrations under .org" is unacceptable under the current system -- no "appropriate" TLDs exist for individuals, for hobby clubs, for fan clubs or for any group of people whose activities are not being sponsored by a company.

Speaking for myself only, I would be very upset to lose my ".org" domains but I could live with it IF AND ONLY IF the following conditions were met:
  (1) An appropriate TLD were made available to which my domain could be transferred -- one whose "original intent" would be to hold domains that don't fit anywhere else.  This means that if I now own "", it would become "foo.someotherTLD" -- I would not have to reregister or engage in any sort of competition for my own domain name.
  (2) This same "return to original intent" policy were carried out on all of the other TLDs.  This means every ".com" that doesn't belong to a commercial business must be moved or removed, every ".net" that does not belong to a network infrastructure provider must be moved or removed, etc.

In conclusion, I find it upsetting that ICANN has proposed this at all and quite disturbing that it chose to start with ".org".  ".org" is (to the best of my knowledge) the smallest TLD, so "cleaning" it out represents the least work.  HOWEVER, ".org" is also the TLD most likely to be filled with registrants who are least able to combine their efforts and least able to mount an effective legal defense against ICANN ($$$) to hold onto their domains.  If the "cleaning" of the ".org" TLD is carried out successfully, a precedent is set for "cleaning" the other TLDs that would be harder for ".net" TLD and ".com" TLD registrants to fight in court.

I am looking forward to reading about ICANN withdrawing this proposal at the Public Forum.


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