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[ga] Appendix U

I am sure that we are all appreciative of the fact that the ICANN Board has
signaled its intent to move quickly to launch the new TLDs.  A seven day
comment period, however, is a device that strains our ability to properly
respond to the many appendices being put forth, and carries with it the
implicit risk that within such a short time-frame critical policy concerns
might be overlooked by the volunteer participants to the DNSO.    The Names
Council in a prior resolution pointed to the general need for "due process
allowing a reasonable time for the constituencies to consider and comment."
This sentiment has been overshadowed by the Board's rush to implement these
new registries.   It is a reality that we must live with, but nonetheless
there is a profound danger in rushing too quickly.

Bret Fausett and others have rightly pointed out that fact that the
confidentiality provisions of appendix U in the proposed registry agreements
will delay the public evaluation of the testbed and the next round of TLDs -
a matter which is decidedly not in the public's best interest.  It appears
as if these registries (which have cited the need for confidential treatment
of approximately 60% of all such data) are utilizing this appendix as a
means to promote and solidify their own market share at the expense of the
registries that are "on hold".  At issue is whether the so-called
"confidential data" is truly proprietary or is merely an anti-competitive

At a time when organizations like New.net are entering many new TLDs into
the market and solidifying relationships with ISPs, we need to be concerned
about actions on our part that would further delay the entry of future ICANN
TLDs.   As some of this confidential data would be made available to the
public, at the earliest, in 2003 under the terms of this appendix, we need
to ask whether appendix U as currently written best serves the interests of
all our stakeholders.

We are running out of time to comment.  I ask all of you to review appendix
U.  The General Assembly should make its views known on these matters.

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