Date: Fri, 07 Aug 1998 22:48:35 -0500
From: Scott <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Subject: Attachment in Word 97; .us Domain
August 7, 1998
The Department of Commerce
Subject: Use of the .us Domain
To The Department of Commerce:
I read recently that an effort is underway to create a universal e-mail system similar to our current Postal Service. Investigating the matter further, I found you are looking for public input. As a Computer Science major at the University of Wisconsin I spend a great deal of time online. I also work as a Web Designer and a Server Administrator in my free time. I feel I have some ideas that may be of use to you.
The task at hand is to create an e-mail system comparable to the Postal Service. For the sake of this letter, let's call the hypothetical system "EPS." The trick here is to come up with an efficient system for routing e-mail to hundreds of millions of e-mail addresses. The best way to go about this is to mimic the system the Postal Service already has in place.
At first it seems turning a basic street address into an EPS address could do this. For example: email@example.com.
However, in a city like New York you will have millions of EPS addresses in the @newyork.ny.us sub-domain. This becomes inefficient because there is too much mail going over this domain compared to the mail traveling over smaller domains.
The solution, I believe, is to use the Postal Service's Zip code idea. When you break the United States down into Zip code-size areas you will more evenly spread out the flow of EPS mail. Another way of saying this is that instead of using many sub-domains, you would only use one: the Zip code. For example: firstname.lastname@example.org.
This way each sub-domain only has to deal with volume in the tens of thousands instead of tens of millions. I believe this is the best way to handle the question of breaking up the .us domain. The question then remains of how complicated to make the street address portion of the EPS. For example, do you use email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org?
Generally speaking, the fewer "dots" you use, the better. This is especially important when you start dealing with apartment numbers. For example, email@example.com is much better than something like firstname.lastname@example.org .
Ideally, you wouldn't need to use more than one "dot" on either side of the "@." On the left side I would only use the dot to separate an apartment or suite number, if necessary. On the right side you would use it to separate the Zip code from the country code.
I don't know if this will ever be read. If it is, I thank you for your time and I hope that I may have been of some help to you.
Student, Internet Enthusiast
From: "Alex Sexsmith" <email@example.com>
Date: 8/7/98 1:01pm
Subject: E-Postal Service
To Whom It May Concern:
I think the US Post Office might be trying to bite off more than it can chew
in attempting to send emails from government organizations.
I don't know at what level of computer competency the general public
operates, but I think it would be important, for successful execution and
implementation of the program, to teach the public about email, alay their
fears about security, etc.
Purchase lots of aspirin. :)
From: "Chris J Spragg, Amoco Polymers, Inc." <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: 8/7/98 8:06pm
Subject: Comments on US Domain
One of the difficulties in doing business over the internet is the inability
of users to determine the physical location of businesses and businesses of
buyers. There is a real comfort factor in knowing where to physically find
someone if you have a problem. What we don't need are more anonymous
addresses for people to hide behind. Combining this need with the desire
for all US residents to have e-mail addresses I would propose the following:
1) Subdivide the .us domain into 50 sub domains for the 50 states plus
additional ones for territories using the currently accepted US Postal
Service abbreviations (ie. I'm in Georgia so mine would be ...ga.us )
2) Give each state the option for the next level of subdivision:
by congressional district
by school district
by major metropolitan area
any other of their choice
and a default choice (none) and time it will be implemented if they don't act.
3) Postal Zip Code (first 5 digits or are all 9 needed?) (ie.
4) Street Number and name (ie. 1234.McGinnisFerry.30005.ga.us )
or PO Box Number (ie. PO123.30005.ga.us )
5) Additional Identifiers requested by the property owner or tenant. (ie.
6) And finally, the name of the account holder.
So the finished address would look like this:
So if you know John's e-mail address you also know his mail address.
Now, How to administer it.
Levels 1-3 get you to the local post office. To request an e-mail address
you go to your local post office and buy a special post card. You address
it to yourself at the desired address and take it up to the counter. You
show a photo ID and they verify your ID and mail the card.
A few days later you get your card in the mail, sign it to confirm you want
the e-mail address and put it back in the mail to return to the postmaster
at your local post office. (Use a folded over card that you open and fold
over the opposite way to expose the return address.)
The post master gets the card back and sets up your address.
The local post office is responsible for making sure there are no duplicate
addresses within their zip code. (Seems to me they already do this.)
One of the great advantages I see in this system is that it makes opening an
e-mail address go through the US Postal Service so existing mail fraud laws
Also, the Postal Service could set up pay for delivery e-mail through their
own servers that would allow business to be conducted through it.
(Invoices, legal notices etc.)
Chris Spragg Ph (770) 772-8349 Mail 4500 McGinnis Ferry Rd
email@example.com Fax 772-8332 Alpharetta, GA 30005-3914
From: "Dan Danckaert" <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: 8/7/98 7:06pm
Subject: Comments on the "enhancement" of the .us domain space
(Comments on the "enhancement" of the .us domain space)
I reviewed the 11 questions you posted on your site at:
I found them particularly lacking because they failed to mention the
radical content contained in the quote (obtained from CNN) from Postal
Service spokeswoman, Sue Brennan which follows:
"...the Postal Service is proposing, at the request of the
administration, to create the infrastructure that would allow this area
to be used. After that is in place, the Postal Service would be in
charge of address management. Everybody would have an e-mail address,
and for those who cannot access it right now, it would be downloaded and
sent to them through the mail"
Based on the above quote, my comments follow:
I am totally opposed to this entire proposal. Specifically, I don't
believe the U.S. Postal Service or the U.S. Government should be
involved in obtaining e-mail service for anyone except its own
employees. This should be left to private market forces.
With all of the free e-mail services currently on the web, how can the
U.S. Government possibly justify providing this service?! Please
review, if you would, the multitude of free e-mail services available on
the world wide web (paid for by our industrious private sector):
Hypothetically, if this were necessary, why should the postal service
automatically be named the administrator? Let private companies bid for
the contract and let market forces reduce the overall cost.
Finally, who pays for the delivery of e-mail for those that do not have
e-mail? Does this mark the advent of publicly financed junk mail? (The
junk mail company sends e-mail to a non-wired citizen and the U.S.
Government downloads, prints, and delivers it for free)
What mail qualifies for download, printout, and delivery? Which
citizens qualify for the delivery option? Those who are technically
limited, those who don't have local access to an ISP, or those who are
financially limited? Who determines these things for us?
The U.S. Government should not be in the business to start a new,
discriminating, unnecessary, unfunded federal program. I don't want my
postal funds to pay for e-mail welfare. We need to continue to reduce
government, not expand it with questionable programs.
(This message composed and sent from a "free" e-mail service)
704 Sunny Brook Terr Rd #1121
Gaithersburg, Maryland 20877
From: James Ervin <email@example.com>
Date: 8/7/98 9:24pm
1. How should the present geographic structure of .us be extended or
modified? What changes should be made in RFC 1480 or the posted policies
I belive that the current .us domain structure is working very well. It is
one of the last free areas of the net. I administer a fourth level domain
for the top tier .us domain and find it's current system to be logical and
understandable. Take the City of Bedford in Virginia for example. They are:
The county is:
The ci and co are due to the fact that the City and County have the same
This system is easy to understand and follow. If a citizen in Bedford
Virginia wants to have a sub-delegation to them, I would assign it to them
in the form of:
If you want to use the .us space for some postal addressing scheme, I
recommend leaving the existing setup in place and adding a secondary domain
to the .us top tier domain. An example:
Virginia residents would have a domain that is something like:
This would prevent tampering with the existing structure of the .us domain.
2. What are the benefits and costs of different options for allocating
second-level domains under .us? How should the allocation of such
second-level domains be decided and administered? What should be the terms
There are currently no costs for second level domains under .us. You
cannot currently get second level domains under .us. If you open up .us to
second level domains other than the currently prescribed ones, the costs
would be nothing more than the management infrastructure needed to
administer those second level domains. If you want to make .us a viable
domain, calculate what the internic spends per top level domain. It would
be a safe assumption that if you opened up .us to second level
registrations you would have a similar cost factor. This cost factor would
be the same as simply creating a new top level domain. I can not really
see any benefits to creating new second level domains under .us. If you
feel that additional domain name space is needed why not start at the root?
Rather than alter the basic structure of .mil, .edu, .gov or .us simply
add a new top level domain. Remember how .org used to be? Why is it not
that way anymore? What happened to it to limit it's use and effectiveness?
In some ways using new second level domains under .us could be considered
more costly than adding a single new top tier domain. A top tier domain
has to be entered at basically a single location. A new second tier to the
.us would have to be integrated into an existing (and somewhat complex)
second tier delegation structure. The costs factor for building a new
second level domain into the .us or redesigning the .us domain more than
likely is higher than simply creating the appropriate top tier domain for
your your needs.
If you must create a second tier domain under .us it should be administered
and maintained identical to the current commercial top tier domain. After
all, it's use, intent and purpose would be identical.
3. Specifically, should special-purpose second-level domains be created
under .us? What are the benefits and costs of creating particular
special-purpose domains (e.g., industry-specific, credentialing, zoning)?
How should such domains be created and administered? Are there reasons to
map names and other addressing and identification systems (e.g., postal
addresses, telephone numbers, longitude and latitude, uniform resource
numbers or others) into .us?
Please see my comments per item 2. As to "Are there reasons to map names
and other addressing ...." I say no. The existing .us domain has
sufficient granularity to read to the household level. Example:
This assigns a host (computer) the name of 1234 (this is the address of the
dwelling) on the domain smithstreet.ci.bedford.va.us. The City of Bedford
or the Bedford post office would be more than able to manage the allocation
of the sub-domains required to make this work. Give me a day and I can
handle traffic to all street equivalent sub-domains in my City. The real
problem comes in with the host name. This assumes that each house has
something to answer for the address/host so that email sent to
firstname.lastname@example.org would have a place to go to.
This could be done with virtual hosts, but the number if IP addresses
required stagers the mind.
4. Alternatively, should .us be treated as an unrestricted top-level
domain like .com or should one or more specific second-level domains such
as .co.us or .com.us be used for unrestricted assignment of domain names
(as in .com)? How should such unrestricted domains be administered and by
No, it should not be treated as an unrestricted top level domain. If you
elect to treat it as an unrestricted domain, you should turn the management
over to an agency that currently performs that task.
5. How should conflicting proposals and claims to manage or use .us
sub-domains be resolved? Who should have responsibility for coordinating
policy for .us over the long term? What public oversight, if any, should be
If you alter the structure of the .us domain (which I recommend against),
let disputes be settled in the same manner as that currently in place for
the other top level domains.
Looking at the questions, I get the impression that the overall question
is: If we turn the .us domain into the equivalent of one of the other top
level domains, how should we manage it? The answer in most cases is deal
with it in the same fashion as the current top level domains.
6. What rules and procedures should be used to minimize conflicts between
trademarks and domain names under .us? Should this problem be treated
differently at international, national, state, and local levels? Should
special privileges be accorded to famous trademarks, such as a right to
register directly under .us or a procedure to preempt the use of the
trademark in a range of sub-domains?
This is a complicated issue. Since the .us domain is administrated in a
"distributive" manner, then the inclusion of trademarked names would cause
a problem. Example:
And then there is Mr. and Mrs. Coke in my town:
As you can see from the example, the inclusion of commercial names will
complicate the one space where an individual can register their legal name
without risk of trademark problems. If my name was Mr. Coke do you think I
would stand a chance of getting and holding coke.net or coke.org? Not
likely. However, I am certain that I could get coke.orlando.fl.us.
The .us domain is the only domain left for people. Each day I read and
hear stories about domain name disputes. Have you ever seen such a story
about the .us domain? Why?
7. What role should states play in the allocation and registration of
their respective sub-domains? Should commercial names be permitted under
states as third-level domains? Or should such third-level domains be
limited to special categories such as domestic corporations or other
state-licensed entities? Should states and localities operate registries
and accept registrations directly? To what extent should state policies be
coordinated and through what mechanisms and procedures?
The .us domain ideally should only have states as sub-domains. These
sub-domains should be administered by an agency at each state. No
commercial third level domains should be allowed (avoid the whole trademark
issue). The policies of each state should be coordinated via RFCs.
8. How well has the system of delegating third-level domains (localities)
to private registrars on an exclusive basis worked? How could it be
improved? Should registrars be accountable to their delegated localities
(just as country-code registries are accountable to national governments)?
Should registrars be limited to a single jurisdiction? Should multiple
competing registrars be able to register under any local, state, or
special-purpose domain under .us as in the plan proposed for generic
The current system of registrars is not the best. It is difficult to deal
with a registrar in Arizona regarding an issue with a third level
delegation in Florida. Give the second level delegation to each state to
run as a government agency. Give each level below that to the political
sub-agencies that exist in that state. Require then to administer the
third and lower level domains. If they lack the ability, then they have
the option of farming it out. Multiple competing registrars would not be
much better than the current situation. I would much rather have each
state manage the assigned second level domain.
9. How should the operation of the .us registry be supported? Should
uniform registration (and renewal) fees be instituted? Should registrars
contribute to the operation of the registry?
The .us domain should be a government support domain with no fees
associated with membership. After all, the ci.bedford.va.us domain for the
City of Bedford in Virginia is not something that we wanted, it was ours by
design. The fact that we must pay a small fee for this boggles the mind.
The costs for each state to manage the second level domain assigned to them
would be minimal and would require no fee for the service.
10. What are best management and allocation practices for country-code
domains? What practices should be emulated or avoided?
Unfortunately the United States has sucked up the use of the normal top
level domains. This forces other countries to use their country code
domains to do what we in the US take for granted. How to rectify this is
beyond me other than the suggestion to starting some planning to turn over
all top level domains to a world body and out of the hands of the US.
11. By what type of entity should .us be administered? Private,
governmental, or quasi-governmental? For profit or not-for-profit? What are
the advantages and disadvantages of using one type of entity (private,
public, for profit, not-for-profit) over the others?
As per the answer to number 9 above. Also, note that the concept of the
.us domain is the domain of the people and their local government (since
the .gov is closed to anything that is not at the federal level). As such
it is fitting that this domain be managed by the people that it serves, the
state and local governments of the US.
Check out the WebCam:
From: Jimmy -Jimbo- Wales <email@example.com>
Date: 8/7/98 3:04pm
The government has no moral right to be involved with the internet
in this capacity at all. The proposed administration and management
of the .us domain by the government promises to be a costly boondoggle
with zero real impact on the internet as a whole. In my opinion, this
whole thing is a foolish political ploy by ignoramuses and charlatans.
From: "Jaime J. MacKercher" <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: 8/7/98 7:05pm
Subject: comments on future expansion and administration of the .us domain space
To whom it may concern:
My only concern on the future expansion of the .us domain space is that
turning over administration to the United States Postal Service.
Currently, SPAM is considered the scourge of e-mail and many efforts
have been made to prohibit such practices. The USPS is the largest
distributor of bulk mail in the country and I fear that the USPS would
carry this practice over to e-mail, generating quantities of SPAM the
likes of which have never been seen and be able to do so with impunity
since it is a government agency. Please take this possibility into
Jaime J. MacKercher
From: "John L. Raff III" <email@example.com>
Date: 8/7/98 12:13pm
Subject: Request for Comments on the Enhancement of the .us Domain Space
DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE
NATIONAL TELECOMMUNICATIONS AND INFORMATION ADMINISTRATION
Docket No. 980212036-8172-03
Request for Comments on the Enhancement of the .us Domain Space
AGENCY: National Telecommunications and Information Administration, Commerce.
ACTION: Notice, Request for Public Comment
My gut feeling tells me that if the US Postal service gets it's hands on
"e-mail" administration, the cost of e-mail will go from an unchargable
small amout to an
astonishing large amount very rapidly.
Don't let the US Postal service get thier money hungry hands on this ever!
E-mail has proven over the last 5 years to be so inexpensive that charging
for it would be only to recoup the administrative accounting expenses NOT
the transmission and storage charges.
(ŻŻŻ`.¸¸.´ŻŻŻ`.¸¸.-> ACGNJ <-.¸¸.´ŻŻŻ`.¸¸.´ŻŻŻ)
John L. Raff III | mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org
Director / Symposium | http://www.acgnj.org
WB2MDG | http://nj5.injersey.com/~jraff
Date: 8/7/98 4:23pm
> 3. ... Are there reasons to map names and other addressing and
identification systems (e.g., postal addresses, telephone numbers,
longitude and latitude, uniform resource numbers or others) into .us?
It seems silly to me to tie the email address to a physical location
rather than to an individual or company. Do we really want to require
forwarding cards and address-change notifications for email? People and
companies move, but email addresses don't have to change. Give everyone
an email address and a way to access it from whatever physical location
they happen to be in.
email@example.com / firstname.lastname@example.org
Date: Fri, 7 Aug 1998 21:52:00 -0700 (PDT)
From: Sam Pagel <email@example.com>
Subject: .us domain name
I think the idea of giving every US citizen an e-mail address would be a good one, as long as it would help put the US on the path to possibly voting for elected officials via email or other electronic means. This is the 21st century and we still have to punch holes in a card?
Also consider the huge internet-traffic-jam this might create - If everyone has access to their e-mail, there should be a study to determine if the infrastructure of the net can handle it, not just the USPS.
Finally, like all good things on the internet, it should exist free of charge, fee, or cost to the citizens of any kind. Wouldn't it be a great day when all the information in the world's knowledge base is accessable for anyone who wants it for free?
From: "Todd" <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Date: 8/7/98 12:18pm
Subject: Dear Sirs,
I was reading in cnn about the proposal to assign a email address to every physical address. I feel this is a waste of my tax payers dollars. Because to finance this is ridiculous. Most people who have computers already have email accounts. And those who don't, really don't want one. As I am sure this would cost taxpayers millions to have everyone assigned an email and maintained even if they don't have access to email capabilities. This is another program I would classify as the fleecing of America.
Date: Sat, 08 Aug 1998 02:18:00 -0500
From: william akers <email@example.com>
Subject: Comments regarding universal e-mail
William P. Akers
118 Elisa Drive
Hendersonville TN 37075
August 8, 1998
Regarding the use of e-mail to deliver bills, etc.
I am strongly opposed to the idea of using e-mail to deliver bills, government information, advertising, etc, to every person in the USA.
I feel this is just one more insidious way to allow the government to get a handle on everyone. This is unnecessary since the postal service already delivers the mail to our doorsteps. If you wish to assign e-mail addresses that the post office then receives and prints out ready for delivery to the recipient,(this means that there will be no cost or inconvenience to the recipient) then go for it, but I do not want my e-mail on my computer to be loaded up with spam from the government. I chose my carrier because they are good at blocking spam. If the government decides to get into that business, then I will be forced to look for a carrier who blocks government trash e-mail.
To me this idea is an abuse of the internet. I do not like receiving all the trash I receive through the post office, and I will like even less having to clean it out of my computer.