[comments-dotorg] dot-org sponsoring organization
First of all, most of this report looks fine to me.
However, there are some points which cause some headache to me.
1. The task force seems to be enthusiastic about the idea that .org
should be delegated to a non-profit sponsoring organization.
Of course, this non-profit organization already shows up in the NSI
contracts and surrounding documents. However, as we have been told
all over the place, these contracts do not set policy, so the only
effect of a for-profit sponsoring organization would be to lose the
$5 million from NSI.
So, why does the sponsoring organization have to be a non-profit?
What's the rationale for this, beyond the NSI contract?
2. The report specifically says: "A new organization need not be
formally incorporated prior to submitting its application." There
should be specific requirements which should be fulfilled by such
non-organizations. In particular, even for a non-profit which does
not yet exist, a solid business plan, and access to the legal,
technical, and business expertise needed should be a requirement,
and should be demonstrated in an eventual proposal.
3. If the sponsoring organization wants to outsource registry
operations to a commercial service provider, a commitment from at
least one provider, and an outline of the outsourcing contract
should be part of the proposal, and should be considered by ICANN
when examining the individual proposals.
Particular attention should be paid to the contractual and practical
abilities the sponsoring organization has if it needs to enforce the
outsourcing contract (this includes, for instance, financial
reserves needed for possible litigation).
The proposal should make clear under what conditions the outsourcing
provider may be changed, and what conditions would apply to a new
If outsourcing is not planned, the proposal should make transparent
the conditions under which this can happen.
4. The task force report says that the sponsoring organization
should have "international support and participation from current
.org registrants and non-commercial organizations inside and outside
of the ICANN process". It should be a requirement that proposals
contain a plan on how this kind of participation is to be
implemented, and how "international support" is to be gathered.
5. The task force "specifically asks that the RFP not require a
non-refundable application fee larger than US$ 1,000". Frankly, I'm
in serious doubt that an organization which can't afford US$ 1,000
would be of any use as a .org sponsoring organization. In
particular, the cost for producing a sound and solid proposal will
produce non-refundable costs far in excess of $1,000 - after all,
$1,000 is just a few hours of a good lawyer's or consultant's time.
On the other hand, a considerably higher application fee may be a
suitable repellent for bogus proposals, and may for this reason be a
6. Let me re-emphasize that creating a sound proposal will require a
considerable investment without any guarantee of return, and it will
almost inevitably require negotiations with and commitments from
various sides. I'm in serious doubt that this is something a
special-purpose non-profit which does not even exist could achieve.
As a side note, I think that this task force's report demonstrates
that the task force process currently preferred over working groups
by the names council is seriously lacking.
Thomas Roessler http://log.does-not-exist.org/