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Re: [gtld-com] Regarding seeking public comment on the committee'sdraft

Quoting Milton:

> Sorry to bother you all again. But Danny Younger has brought to my
> attention a discussion paper that addresses the IDN - TLD issues.
> Discussion Paper on Non-ASCII Top-Level Domain Policy Issues
> http://www.icann.org/committees/idn/non-ascii-tld-paper-13jun02.htm
> The paper provides a balanced view of the pros and cons.  I
> reproduce below the most relevant parts (seems that we have been
> reinventing the wheel on the Council gTLD-committee.)

This text makes explicit and significant reference to .museum. I
responded to it at the time on the indicated forum. As the issue is
now being revisited, my own earlier remarks follow as posted at,

 - - - - -

The policy basis for the existing .museum TLD is given by the
definition of "museum" stated in the Statutes of the International
Council of Museums (ICOM). This organization was created in 1946 and
is a non-governmental non-profit organization maintaining formal
relations with UNESCO and having a consultative status with the United
Nations Economic and Social Council.  ICOM is dedicated to the
development of museums and the museum profession, and operates
globally for the preservation of cultural heritage.

Committed to the promotion and facilitation of professional
cooperation, ICOM is a worldwide network for museum professionals of
all disciplines and specializations. The 17,000 members of ICOM in 140
countries participate in the activities of 108 National Committees and
28 International Committees.  Some National Committees have also
organized on a regional level to reinforce their action. ICOM is
affiliated with 14 international associations.

ICOM's publications and activities have long been produced and
conducted in a manner that reflects the diversity of languages used by
its membership, and the national committees conduct their primary
business in their native languages. More importantly, a national
committee may have its own implementation of central ICOM policies in
full accommodation of local conditions and concerns.

ICOM's global organizational network provides an ideal basis for
establishing an internationalized platform for the development and
maintenance of .museum policies and administrative procedures. This
was foreseen from the outset and is reflected in the Sponsorship
Agreement between ICANN and MuseDoma, for example, in the wording,
"Later in Phase 2 [the Full Operation Phase], MuseDoma will consider,
in consultation with the Sponsored TLD Community, whether the
provision of ENS [Eligibility and Name Selection] Services should be
distributed on a broader collaborative basis among appropriate
organizations selected by MuseDoma."

A national or regional node foreseen in this extended action might
include representatives of the National Committee of ICOM, any other
National Museums Association that may be in operation, and an
accredited registrar providing support in local languages. The
availability of different non-ASCII character semantic equivalents of
.museum would significantly heighten the potential utility of this
mode of policy distribution. It would do so by providing clearly
defined vessels for local implementations of the shared international
policies. It would also provide a vernacular basis for eliciting the
broader participation of museums in different language regions and
thus provide significant impetus to the growth of the global museum
community's Internet presence. This, in turn, would benefit the entire
community of Internet users.

The scope of ICOM's pre-existing efforts in accommodating the language
needs of its membership will be readily seen on the ICOM Web site. In
present context, however, they will be most clearly illustrated by the
mirror site maintained bilingually in Japan at:




The agency operating this service and MuseDoma are currently
discussing both a similar bilingual mirror of the MuseDoma site and
the establishment of a Japanese ENS node.

As clear as the benefit to be derived from the availability of
non-ASCII character semantic equivalents of .museum may be, there are
equally significant risks of counterproductive consequence if the
policy basis for their coordinated operation is not suitably

> Each TLD string should be treated differently, and should be open for
> proposals to any potential registry operator that can establish the basic
> requirements for a sponsored TLD, including support within the community
> to be served.

If this were permitted to serve as the normative basis for impending
action it would largely, if not totally, negate the effort currently
in progress to establish a unified presence for the global museum
community on the Internet. It is difficult to envision any
constructive purpose that would be served by mandating a heterogeneous
policy structure that might, for example, render a Korean museum
eligible to hold a name in the TLD string consisting of the Hangul
characters meaning "museum", without at the same time establishing the
same museum's eligibility for the present .museum sTLD.

In order to avoid any such negative effect, some central coordinating
body will be needed. I submit for your consideration that the .museum
Sponsoring Organization <http://musedoma.museum> has been established
in a manner that will enable it to assume this role without
difficulty. Should you perceive any utility in coordinating relevant
aspects of your own action with MuseDoma's efforts in the
international distribution of .museum policy oversight, I am at your
disposal for the discussion of how this might proceed. The
establishment of a viable basis for providing alternative character
set representations of .museum, sharing the same core policies and
providing a basis for the clear demarcation of local considerations,
would be a clear step forward in the development of the utility
provided by the Internet to its users.

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