April 30, 1998
To: Karen Rose
Fr: Susan Davis
Re: CORE, POC, and ISOC meeting with Ira Magaziner on April 24
Following is a summary based on our notes of the April 24th meeting for posting on the NTIA website. Present at the meeting were David Maher of the Policy Oversight Committee (POC); Don Heath, President of the Internet Society (ISOC); Susan Davis on behalf of CORE; Ira Magaziner, Greg Chang, White House Office of Policy Development and, Karen Rose, NTIA.
The meeting centered around the basic issues of non-profit vs. for-profit registries; the timeliness of the U.S. government policy; the position the USG may take with regard to determining the number and the selection of new domain names; the involvement of the USG in selecting the overseeing the new organization (IANA), and the stated concerns of governments and governmental organizations outside the U.S. such as the Australian government and the EU.
Mr. Magaziner said the U.S. policy paper will be released within one or two weeks, hopefully not later than May 11. It will be final; there will be no request for additional comments; and will have the necessary U.S. government clearances to become a rule or a policy. Mr. Magaziner said it will be "substantially different" from the Green Paper and, while not accommodating everyone's interests, will be geared toward achieving the greatest consensus in the shortest amount of time. He does not expect there will be hearings on the policy.
Mr. Magaziner questioned whether CORE would support a policy that gave all major decision making responsibility on domain names to the new organization (IANA), including issues regarding profit vs not for profit registries; competitive registries; number of registries an registrars, number of new domain names, etc. In response, CORE, POC, and ISOC stated that timeliness was critical. If the new organization was constituted and able to make these kinds of decisions within several months, there would a consensus to support the policy.
Mr. Magaziner stated that a number of foreign governments and governmental organizations had been very vocal and that he was taking those comments into consideration with the new recommended policy. He understood their feelings for moving quickly, for ending the NSI monopoly, for creating a level playing field, and for allowing international self governance for the Internet.
On the subject of not-for-profit/cost recovery membership-owned registries, Karen Rose asked the question of what model could be used to determine costs. David Maher (POC) said the member-owned CORE/POC model was the basis from which to start. Mr. Magaziner mentioned that the US Government didn't want any registry paying million dollar salaries as part of their costs, as an illustration of unacceptable behavior.
Mr. Magaziner agreed there was a clear need to end NSI's monopoly, and stated that negotiations with NSI would begin as soon as the new paper was issued. He said that once the new IANA organization is up and running, all domain names, distribution and management would be under its control. He agreed that registrars should ultimately have access to any domain name and asked if there was consensus among ISOC, CORE and POC on this. He stated his position which was that CORE may legally challenge the USG decisions, but that the USG felt it could overcome a legal challenge from any entity.
Mr. Magaziner inquired about CORE's position on .com. Both Mr. Maher and Mr. Heath explained their understanding of CORE's position, which was the expectation that ultimately all of NSI's domain names would be "in the public trust". Mr. Magaziner agreed.
Mr. Magaziner said the US Government will not walk away, but intends to allow the new organization to function as IANA has to this point, with minimal involvement on the part of the government. Mr. Magaziner explained DARPA has discontinued funding of IANA, the Commerce Department now provides the funds which will end 9/30/98, and that NSI's contract will not be extended after 9/30/98 under any circumstances. Mr. Magaziner said "I agree there needs to be a level playing field with regard to NSI. We will NOT renegotiate a contract with NSI." He added the Justice Dept. will get involved in handling the "demonopolization of NSI".
With regard to the new IANA, Mr. Magaziner said the US Government will not get involved in selecting the new board, dominating the choices, or controlling the process. Mr. Magaziner added he hoped CORE would support Jon Postel in any way possible, as long as any assistance did not negatively impact Postel's objectivity and neutrality.
The representative group reiterated that POC, ISOC and CORE could support a decision to let the new organization make all the key decisions. However, the group feels strongly that time is of the essence and that the new organization must be able to move expeditiously and immediately, without USG interference.