not really ICANN approves .XXX red-light district for the Internet

Eric Brunner-Williams brunner at
Sun Mar 27 19:56:29 CDT 2011

On 3/27/11 5:50 PM, John R. Levine wrote:
>>> Arithmetic, mostly. There are 40,000 co-ops in the United States,
>>> 160,000 in Europe, and apparently several million world-wide, yet
>>> there are only 6700 domains in .COOP. I would find it hard to say
>>> that under 3% takeup was significant support.
>> Do you attach any significance to the restriction that the .coop
>> operator has to use non-cooperatives as sales channels and the
>> primary means of relations with cooperatives as registrants?
> No. They knew about that when they applied.

You are mistaken. This was a lively subject of negotiation involving 
Louis Touton and the parties. I was involved as well. There was real 
shock when Louis came back from the Registrar Constituency with the 
message that rather than the initial registrar-free budget of initial 
registrations, the working number was _0_.

> The application for .COOP is archived on the ICANN web site. They
> predicted with "90% confidence" that they'd have over 100,000
> registrations within four years and with "50% confidence" that they'd
> have 300,000 registrations. They failed.

See above.

>> Note, that cooperatives with registrations in the legacy monopoly
>> name spaces could be, but are not, accounted for revenue purposes,
>> as .coop registrants.
> Hmmn, counting people who've decided not to use .COOP as indications
> of support for .COOP. That's very creative. You sure you don't work
> for ICANN?

In 2007 I consulted for the IANA function, writing some perl code to 
process the RT queues and generate reports for the IETF, but 
otherwise, no.

Again, communicating is elusive. Verisign, Afilias, NeuStar and CORE 
all operate more than a single registry. The original SRS proposal by 
Kent Crispen, Dave Crocker, Roberto Gateano, and Sylvan Langenbach 
placed the locus of competition in the registry function. The choice 
to place the locus of competition in the registrar function does not 
prevent ICANN from revisiting that choice. The distinction between a 
registry as a contractual entity, and one or more back end operators, 
allows a registry to have a registrant as a revenue source, and a 
party back end operator, not necessarily the same corporate entity or 
an affiliate of the registry to have the same registrant as a revenue 
source. Just as Verisign was required to participate in the 
redelegation of .org, Verisign could be required to revenue share for 
registries its market power harms, in this case, a registry created 
for cooperatives.

>> The Nominalia issue is one registrar. The .cat name space has been
>> available for only 5 years, the .hk and .ch name spaces since 1986.
>> The rate of growth for .cat has been 10k/yr for each of five years,
>> and assuming no changes, will reach the relative densities of
>> western European national name spaces.
> Actually, if you look at the registry reports, there was a burst of
> about 18,000 domains in .CAT the first year, the annual growth rate
> has been considerably less than 10K/yr and it is if anything slowing
> down. From the Nov 10 report, the most recent one ICANN has published,
> to today, the growth is about 1000, which extrapolates to under
> 3500/yr, so it'll catch up with the nearby ccTLDs several centuries
> from now, if ever. I can't find the business plan of the .CAT
> application on ICANN's web site, but I'd be pretty surprised if it
> predicted numbers anywhere near that low.

I'll ask Nacho or Jordi tomorrow morning to comment. You could be right.


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