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The gTLD Constituency is pleased to provide its input to the Council on the
proposed agreement between VeriSign and ICANN.

We believe that the proposed agreement, called Plan B, should be concluded
and that it provides significantly greater benefits to the Internet
community when compared with the status quo, or Plan A.  Among these are:

* The normalization of VeriSign's relations with ICANN.  Under the 1999
agreements (Plan A), the relationship between VeriSign and ICANN is
contractually quite distinct from the relationship between any other gTLD
registry and ICANN.  The proposed agreement would, for the most part,
establish the ICANN--VeriSign relationship on the same footing as the ICANN
relationship with other gTLD registries.

* The elimination of the 1999 contractual limitations on NSI's (now
VeriSign's) financial contributions to ICANN.  These limitations could well
impose a burden on all other registries and on other members of the ICANN
community because under them, regardless of the circumstances, the VeriSign
registry is limited to annual contributions to ICANN of $250,000 and the NSI
Registrar to annual contributions to ICANN of $2 million.  The elimination
of these limits would be an important aspect of the normalization of
relations between VeriSign and ICANN under Plan B.

* The separation of the .com, .net, and .org registry functions in a way
that makes it likely that VeriSign will continue to operate the registry for
.com, but would end VeriSign's operation of the .org registry, and would
place the operation of the .net registry in a competitive situation in which
VeriSign and others will be competing by 2005 for its future operation.

* The enhancement of the stability of the Internet in general and the .com
environment in particular by placing the ICANN-VeriSign relationship on a
sound long-term footing in which VeriSign can, and will, make long-term
investments that will ensure the continued efficient and smooth operation of
this critically-important element of the Internet.

In contrast with these benefits to the Internet community, we have heard no
persuasive reason to support Plan A or not support Plan B.  As regards
VeriSign's continued ownership of the NSI Registrar, ICANN management has
disclosed that the market share held by the NSI Registrar has dropped
dramatically since the 1999 agreements were executed; with the ongoing, very
rapid growth of ccTLD registrations and the advent of several new gTLD's,
there seems little reason to assume that this trend will change.  ICANN
management also reports that VeriSign's implementation of the Organizational
Conflict of Interest (OCI) provisions of the 1999 agreement  --which would
be continued under the proposed agreement--  has been very successful and
actually generated no complaints (until the proposed agreement was
announced); there seems little reason to assume that this practice would
change.  In fact, under the Plan B, VeriSign would for the first time locate
the NSI Registrar in a separate subsidiary.  And finally, ICANN management
has disclosed that under Plan A, VeriSign would likely be both a major
"re-seller" of registrations and re-enter the market as an ICANN-accredited
registrar anyway.  

In conclusion, we believe that Plan B would serve the interests of the
Internet community and the ICANN community far better than would Plan A and
we have found no persuasive reasons to oppose Plan B.

Roger J. Cochetti

 -----Original Message-----
From: 	Philip Sheppard [mailto:philip.sheppard@europe.com] 
Sent:	Monday, March 12, 2001 11:13 PM
To:	council@dnso.org
Subject:	[council] Verisign ICANN agreement - DNSO input

Further to the ICANN Board's request for DNSO input on the substantive
issues of the proposed revision to the Verisign ICANN agreement the
following timetable will apply:

1. Constituency and GA input
All constituencies and the GA are requested to discuss the issues and send a
short report via their NC reps to the council list latest 12 noon (your
local time) SUNDAY 25 MARCH 2001.

Please keep reports short, listed in note form and focused on the
desirability of the status quo (old agreement) and the new agreement. What
are the pros and cons ? Which agreement do you prefer?

(If you are able to cooperate with other constituencies and make a joint
position - even better.)

2. DNSO and NC consolidation
I will then review these reports for common ground and produce a proposed
DNSO statement. It will have an umbrella DNSO statement where there is
common ground and list the Constituency positions thereafter.

There will be a special NC teleconference at 15:00 Paris time Wednesday 28
March at which the NC and GA chair will agree to a statement based on the
consolidated document.

That statement will be forwarded to the ICANN Board to meet their deadline
of 31 March 2001.

Philip Sheppard
NC Chair

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