Final Report of the Transfer Task Force on the WLS proposal

Final Report of the Transfer Task Force on the WLS proposal

Sunday, July 14, 2002
Submitted by Marilyn Cade, Chair

On behalf of the Transfer Task Force

This is the draft Final Report of the Transfer Task Force [TR-TF, or TF] on the Verisign WLS proposal; it includes the following information and elements:

  1. Recommendations of the TF on WLS
  2. Several areas where the TF still welcomes comment, identified in the recommendations section in bold.
  3. Background of the TF request to undertake comment/consensus on WLS
  4. Summary of the Work of the TF
  5. Summary statement on input received in various public fora
  6. PowerPoint Presentation presented to DNSO Names Council which offers a summary to the community, including the recommendations of the TF
  7. Notice that Minority Reports are expected from the Registry Constituency.
  8. Notice on how to submit comments on the Final Report and closing date of comments

Recommendations of the Transfer TF on WLS:

Background on Draft Recommendations:

The authority under which the TR-TF undertook examination of the WLS issue is not addressed in the final report. It is addressed in earlier documents.

After extensive examination and dialogue related to the issue of WLS, the Task Force presented a preliminary preview of its findings, and draft recommendations at the ICANN Bucharest Names Council meeting. This presentation, and draft recommendations were further presented to the public during the Public Forum, on 27 June 02. During their presentation at the Public Forum, Verisign made certain statements about possible modifications in their proposal. SnapNames and other supporters made extensive statements of support to the VS/SnapNames/WLS proposal. Public Forum comments continued to be received, opposing and supporting WLS.

The TF took note of the possible changes proposed by Verisign. In addition, the Board asked the TF to include its views regarding these modifications proposed by Verisign. The TF requested verification of the modified proposal to ICANN. E-mail from Chuck Gomes, Verisign Registry representative, dated Tuesday, 9 July 2002, verified the statement made in his presentation, but noted that the actual offer to ICANN had not been modified, pending determination that there was receptivity to such changes. The three changes were 1) implement of an interim grace period until official is implemented 2) no favored treatment of Snap Names holders 3) pricing to be simplified by removing rebates and charging one fixed price of $24 to registrars per subscription year.

The TF met via conference call to consider Web Forum input, GA submissions, TF discussions and submissions to the TF, and Public Forum input, as well as these modifications to the VS WLS proposal. Taking into account this information, modifications were made to the TF recommendations.

The recommendations are presented here, as part of the final report.

Recommendations of the Transfer TF related to Verisign WLS:

The TF has provided a primary recommendation, and an alternative. I and II.

Given that it is clear that the recommendations of the NC and its TFs are considered advisory to the Board, the TF has chosen to present its preferred outcome [I.], and an alternative, should the Board not accept its primary recommendation. [II.]

    TR-TR Preferred Recommendation:

  1. Recommendation to deny the WLS:

    1. The ICANN board move with all haste to implement and actively enforce the proposed Redemptions Grace Period for Deleted Names policy and practice
    2. The ICANN Board reject Verisign's request to amend its agreement to enable it to introduce its proposed WLS.
    3. The ICANN Board reject Verisign's request to trial the WLS for 12 months.

    The TF takes into account that the ICANN Board may not accept the policy recommendations noted above for a variety of reasons.

    Therefore, an alternative recommendation, with conditions, is provided.

  2. Should the ICANN board not accept the policy recommendations noted above and grant Verisign's request for a change to its agreement and a 12 month trial of its WLS, we would alternatively recommend that WLS be approved with conditions:

    1. The introduction of WLS is dependent on the implementation and proven (for not less than three months) practice envisaged in the proposed Redemption Grace Period for Deleted Names policy and practice and the establishment of a standard deletion period.
    2. Verisign has proposed an interim Grace Period. The TF recommends that any interim Grace Period have all the characteristics and conditions of the Redemption Grace Period now in implementation. [No support is indicated for a process, which differs from the ICANN Redemption Grace period.] [Verisign has described their proposed implementation of an interim period as manual, but restricted to names with WLS. This does not meet the TF's recommendations that any interim process has to be consistent with the ICANN Redemption Grace Period.] [The Task Force seeks comments on the requirement that any redemption grace period be consistent with the ICANN Redemption Grace period].
    3. Several Constituencies remain concerned that a standard deletion period be established and implemented. Some TF members believe that this could be considered separately from WLS. The TF seeks comment on whether this should be implemented separately from the timeline associated with WLS implementation or should be required in a time frame to coincide with the WLS implementation? Or should be required as a commitment, with a firm timeline, before approving WLS?
    4. The WLS include a requirement that notice be provided by the Registry (through the registrar) to the existing registrant of a domain name when a WLS option is taken out against that registrant's domain name. {Notice} [Service not included in VS WLS proposal. The TF seeks comment on this].
    5. The WLS include a requirement for full transparency as to who has placed a WLS option on a domain name and the registrar that actions the option. {Transparency} [Service not included in the VS WLS. The TF seeks comments on this.]
    6. Based on the above two points (notice and transparency), the price for the WLS be set at the same amount as the current registry fee for a registration - the cost of the WLS function being no more, an probably less, than a registration - plus any additional costs to "notice and transparency', based on Verisign's provision of such validating information on such costs to the Board/Staff.

Background of the TF Request to undertake Comment/Consensus on WLS:

The Status Report regarding Deletions, Solutions and WLS, Dated 4 June 2002, describes the request received by the TF. The ICANN Board referred this matter to the TR-TF, via the Names Council, via Resolution [02.53]. The Names Council referred this matter to the TF on 24 June 2002. Via Resolution [02.55] the Board invited public comment and established a web forum for such comment.

Summary of the work of the Task Force:

A status report was provided by the Transfer TF by 10 June 2002 to the board describing the TF work.

"Open conference calls" were held by the Task Force; comments received were forwarded to the TR-TF archives; review of the web forum maintained by ICANN was undertaken by members of the TF. Members of the TF attended and participated in the Public Forum in Bucharest.

The GA, BC, IPC, Registrar and Registry Constituencies have all submitted written comments, at various stages of the comment process. Verisign, SnapNames both submitted extensive documents, which addressed many of the questions raised on the comment forums.

Summary statement on input received in various public for a

Comments from the community can be categorized as 1) opposing Verisign WLS 2) supporting Verisign/SnapNames WLS 3) raising other questions about priorities which should be addressed first, including Redemption Grace Period and standardizing deletions period.

The Task Force has developed recommendations based on the input reviewed and received. In addition, on item 3, the Task Force has included these concerns in their alternate recommendation and has asked for community comment specific to those issues.

PowerPoint Presentation (attached as information to the community)


Notice that Minority Reports are expected from Registry Constituency:

The Registry Constituency has advised the Task Force chair that they intend to submit a minority report. Among their concerns are the legitimacy of the TF's work on WLS; the process followed, areas discussed.

The issue of legitimacy of the TF involvement has been addressed in the Task Force publications to date. ICANN staff have been invited to several of the TF calls. The nature of the request, forwarded from the board, has been shared with all TF members.

The Constituency has been assured that their minority report will be forwarded to the NC. They have also been asked to elaborate on their specific concerns to the TF so that the TF can address them.

*Other Minority Reports

Should any other constituency/GA have a minority report, it will be forwarded to the TF.

Notice on how to submit Comments on the Final Report and closing date of comments:

Please submit comments for a period of 7 days starting Monday, July 15, to Monday, July 22.
Email address for public comments comments-deletes@dnso.org
archives at http://www.dnso.org/dnso/dnsocomments/comments-deletes/Arc01/

Posted comments will be reviewed by the Transfer TF, and will be forwarded to the ICANN Board.

Note: this issue has been thoroughly vetted via public lists, via the Task Force preliminary briefings in Bucharest. The short final public comment period is intended to provide a final opportunity for the community and Constituencies and GA to provide final input specific to the recommendations of the Task Force.

Minority opinions are invited from DNSO Constituencies and should be provided to the TF meeting on July 22, for forwarding to the NC on July 24. The Task force Final Report will be presented to the Names Council on July 24 at the NC meeting. The NC will then forward a final recommendation to the BoD on July 26.