On October 22, 2001, the Department of Commerce awarded a cooperative agreement for the management of the .edu Internet domain name space to EDUCAUSE.

EDUCAUSE is a non-profit association representing the technology needs of higher education institutions. With over 1,800 college, university, and corporate members, EDUCAUSE advocates the development and management of networking for higher education.

The .edu domain is the top level domain that was established for use by educational institutions in the Internet domain name system. Currently, .edu is generally restricted to use by regionally accredited four-year colleges and universities in the United States. VeriSign, Inc., currently manages .edu on behalf of the Department of Commerce. That arrangement expires on November 10, 2001.

Under the new five-year agreement with the Department of Commerce, EDUCAUSE will:

(1) operate the registry and registrar services for .edu at no cost to the government. EDUCAUSE will not charge a registration fee for its services, but preserves its option to propose a fee in the future to recover its costs. Any future fees will be subject to Department of Commerce approval.

(2) continue to provide registration services in .edu for all U.S. four-year regionally accredited colleges and universities, and for other current .edu domain name holders.

(3) offer new .edu domain name registration services to regionally accredited U.S. community colleges. EDUCAUSE will begin taking applications for .edu names from such institutions on November 12, 2001 and throughout a 60-day sunrise period.

(4) provide a forum and a process by which proposed changes in the membership criteria and other policy issues regarding the .edu domain can be discussed in an open and transparent manner.

Beginning November 12, 2001, applications for new .edu names may be submitted through EDUCAUSE using a Web-based application at www.educause.edu/edudomain/ EDUCAUSE has entered into a subcontract with VeriSign, Inc., to provide operational back-office registrar functions and registry services during the transition and first phase of the cooperative agreement. Timeline details and frequently asked questions may be found at the above EDUCAUSE Web site.

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