The Commercial and Business Users Constituency

NEWSLETTERS ARCHIVE - Issue 5: April 2004

Welcome to Bizconst News, the Business Constituency newsletter.  There is a wide range of issues under consideration at the moment, with two draft positions going through the BC consultation process (WHOIS and dot net).

The three BC reps, and the WHOIS Task Force reps continue to lead on issues on behalf of the BC and welcome and encourage the support and views of the membership.  This is particularly important for draft positions which need membership endorsement.  So a reminder for you to respond to the current drafts, which can be accessed from this newsletter.

It's also time to start thinking about the next ICANN meetings, which are to be held in Malaysia in July.  The organisers are not only proud to be hosting the event, but are making a real effort to showcase the hospitality and welcome that Malaysia can offer.  Details of pre-registration can be found below, and we recommend early booking if you wish to stay at the legendary Shangri-La Hotel, which is also the conference venue.

Finally, the main aim of this newsletter is to present members with a clear summary of current issues with ongoing links for further information.  The secretariat welcomes your comments on the newsletter in the hope that we can continue to develop it to meet your needs.

Best wishes


ICANN meetings took place in Rome, March 2004.  As well as the three BC reps and the secretariat, there was a good attendance from BC members.

Cross-constituency and BC meeting
A meeting of the BC, ISPCP and IPC constituencies took place the morning of 2 March.  In the afternoon, there was a Business Constituency meeting.

Statement to the Public Forum
The three BC reps delivered a statement at the Public Forum at the ICANN meeting in Rome, regarding finance and litigation.  This is not an official BC position as it was not possible to put it through the usual member consultancy procedure.


The final BC position on the three WHOIS Task Forces is now in circulation for comment. Please send your comments to the secretariat by the end of business on Friday 30 April. Non response will be assumed as acceptance of the position.

Members are asked to pay particular attention to the new issues which the position addresses - namely, the willingness to consider tiered access to WHOIS data, as long as there is an effective mechanism for legitimate users to achieve access.


A draft BC position is in circulation on the possible re-assignment of dot net. Under the terms of the existing contract, the dot net registry has to be made available for re-assignment away from Verisign this year. However, unlike with dot org, the incumbent registry Verisign may also re-apply.

This position paper will for the basis of the BC's views in the recently established GNSO Council sub-committee on dot net, for which the BC's Philip Sheppard, is the chairman.

The position is open for member comment until 3 May 2004.


On 19 March, 2004, ICANN announced that ten applications for new sTLDs had been received.  There is now a public comment period until 30 April 2004.  The applications will then be reviewed by an independent evaluation panel beginning in May 2004.

The BC is sending public comments based on the existing BC position.

New Registry Services
Following the community outcry over the proposed introduction of the wildcard service in dot com, the GNSO Council has been working as a task force on an Approval Process for New or Changed Registry Services. It has now developed a flow chart that outlines the key decisions and processes involved in evaluating proposed changes to Registry services.

At the start of April, the Council asked ICANN staff three questions. The first is one of scope: Do all changes require Board approval? The Council has also developed a set of criteria for assessing the impact of a proposed new registry service and, in its second question, has asked ICANN staff to clarify which of these criteria fall within ICANN's Mission. The criteria include ones on Adherence to standards, Security and stability, Impact on third parties, the Degree of community support, and Market forces. 

Finally, the Council has asked whether ICANN's existing appeals procedure is sufficient for this new process.

BC member David Fares attended this forum and provided the following summary as outlined by the chair, Jose-Maria Figueres.
In late March, the UNís Information and Communication Technology Task Force held a global forum in New York, meant to provide input to Secretary General Annan in the creation of his working group.  The large majority of participants at the meeting agreed that numerous expert bodies address issues related to Internet governance, and that such bodies should continue to be the focal points for future policy analysis.  In this regard, it was agreed, additional work is needed to ensure that developing countries can participate meaningfully in these expert bodies.  Finally, there may be some policy issues where additional international coordination is necessary.  The Chairman of the forum offered the following summary points:
  • This was not a negotiating forum and the discussions reflected this.
  • The Forum did not result in a definition of Internet governance.
  • No one said that we should discard the existing systems but rather we should support negotiations in existing expert organizations, including supporting ICANN's move towards greater inclusiveness and not reinvent the wheel.
  •  There was an emerging list of issues that need more dialogue, and more awareness raising/sharing of information.
  • UN ICT Task Force can possibly play a role in providing a forum for these dialogues.
  • There is a need to empower many actors to participate in existing expert bodies through capacity building, policy, language [translation], technology and logistics [i.e. travel costs].
  • There is a need for collective learning about what is out there, and better understand the gaps.
  • Developing countries were calling for existing processes to have more legitimacy, in their view, by making them more inclusive.
  • How to address the legitimacy and transparency concerns to make sure that we maintain creativity and entrepreneurship

ICANN Meetings Schedule
In Rome the ICANN Meetings Committee agreed upon the following location and dates:

April 4-8 Latin America
July 11-15 Europe
Dec 5-9 North America


March 27-31 Asia Pacific
June 26-30 Africa
October 30-Nov 3 Latin America


March 26-30 Europe
June 25-29 North America
October 29-Nov 2 Asia Pacific

ICANN Board Meetings
ICANN is actively soliciting proposals from organizations seeking to host an ICANN Board of Directors Meeting in 2005 and 2006. 

ICANN Job Announcements
ICANN has begun active recruiting for two staff positions -
Webmaster and and Chief Registrar Liaison. Recruiting continues for two additional positions, Ombudsman and System Administration Engineer. 

The next ICANN meetings will take place in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia on 19 - 23 July. Agenda items will include a report from the president's working group on the WIPO II proposals to provide a form of UDRP process for international organisation names and country names.
The next preparatory meeting of the World Summit on the Information Society will take place in Hammamet, Tunisia, from 24-26 June 2004.  Pre-registration will take place from May 2004.

Further information and details of the meeting can be found here:

WSIS has recently opened an online forum on Internet Governance, and encourages contributions from stakeholders:


Thank you to all members who have paid their fees for 2004.  Once all invoices are paid, the secretariat will update the member contact list. 


ICANN meetings, Malaysia 19-23 July 2004
WSIS meeting, Tunisia 24-26 June 2004