evaluation of the IWG on DNS

Dave Crocker dcrocker at brandenburg.com
Tue Nov 18 07:14:50 UTC 1997

Unfortunately, Gordon seems intent on spreading his views on this topic to
one an all venues, no matter the difficulties with his assessment.

To whit:

At 11:50 PM 11/17/97 -0500, Gordon Cook wrote:
>end of the summer, an attitude that since the ISOC CORE effect in Geneva

One problem is this lovely focus on Geneva, ignoring the rather
considerable oversight functions and constraints provided by the POC which
is not based anywhere and has global participation, with even more broad
review by the supporting signatories to the gTLD MoU.  Rather, it is more
convenient to paint CORE as part of ISOC which, of course, it is not.  Even
more interesting is the view that Swiss law is somehow an essential problem
with the gTLD MoU structure.

>We have been told that the idea of assistance in the creation of the
>database software needed by CORE has been tried out in negotiations for
>changes that would make the CORE Swiss cartel more 'democratic'. Having

An idea has been tried out?  What does this mean? For all this focus on US
government folks, the problem here is that the work being done by CORE is
being done by CORE and Emergent, with the relevant required assistance from
the Policy Oversight Committee, and by no one else.  Others may hold
whatever discussions they want but it's difficult to understand why they
are important.

And about the inflammatory, but incorrect, term cartel.  One tires of its
continued use as an effort to wave red flags at everybody.  My dictionary
says a cartel controls production, pricing, and marketing.  One could argue
that the gTLD MoU does control production, in the sense of regulating the
creation of one class of new TLDs, but it does not control pricing or

Criticisms about the control of available gTLDs ignore legitimate questions
about DNS scaling.

>believe that 1. he is the 'boss' of the IWG and will prevent Burr and
>Kahin from doing an end run around him in their desire to kill the NSI

This I like a lot.  The idea that they would do an end run around
Magaziner.  You'd have to have met these folks to realize how humorous that
idea is.  For starters, Magaziner explicitly directed Burr to to be the
point of contact on this topic.

>of the ITU, after the Secretary General admitted that he would like to
>have the ITU take over Internet governance, we believe that it is critical

The SG admitted no such thing.  He used a phrase along the lines of
"greater role in the Internet".  It takes a special degree of paranoia to
translate that into "take over Internet governance".  But what the heck,
the latter makes more exciting copy.

>control the Internet.  Stef has a profound understanding of these issues
>states that Mr. Magziner must realize that there is no crisis; and that no

It's always interesting to see those who are uninvolved in operations make
such firm assessments about operational requirements.  This makes it so
much easier to ignore the 3 1/2 year history to this topic and the fact
that the DNS operations community considered this a crisis ONE YEAR AGO.

>new top level domains should be added to the root servers until all

I'm sure that governments and organizations outside of the US will be
interested in seeing the United States government take such proprietary (or
paternalistic) actions towards an activity which is attempting to
facilitate entrepreneurial efforts for new registrars and provide
substantially better competitive benefits for consumers.

>parties have joined into a confederation using IETF processes to develop
>their own governance plan.  He concludes by pointing out that the ultimate

That's exactly what the gTLD MoU represents.  It was designed quite
carefully to reflect IETF-like processes. 

But where the IETF process fails, as do all others, is with those who are
constantly declaring that a topic needs further study.  I guess 3 1/2 years
is not enough.

Dave Crocker                                          +1 408 246 8253
Brandenburg Consulting                           fax: +1 408 249 6205  
675 Spruce Dr.                               dcrocker at brandenburg.com
Sunnyvale, CA 94086 USA                    http://www.brandenburg.com

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