5 December 2005

NRO Statement on ICANN-VeriSign Agreement

NRO Statement on ICANN-VeriSign Agreement

The Number Resource Organization (NRO), acting in its capacity as the Address Supporting Organization (ASO) has read the proposed settlement agreement between ICANN and VeriSign. The ASO has noted the various aspects of the agreement and comments that have been made by various ICANN constituencies. We are concerned that regardless of the legal propriety of the settlement, there exists a strong, perceived sentiment that this agreement maintains the existence of what can be characterized as questionable business practices. The ASO believes that this detracts from ICANN’s ability to fulfill its role to provide stability in the technical coordination and management of the Internet.

The ASO has concerns regarding sub paragraph c of the Root Server Management Transition Completion Agreement which states in part that ICANN and VeriSign will

“Work together to establish a timetable for the completion of the transition to ICANN of the coordination and management of the ARPA TLD…”

The ASO believes this to be in contravention of a letter from the US Department of Commerce to ICANN dated 28 April 2001 which states:

“The Internet Architecture Board (IAB), in cooperation with the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN), is currently responsible for managing the Top Level Domain (TLD) name “arpa”.

The letter further states that the “…Department of Commerce requests that, as part of the IANA functions, ICANN undertake administration of the arpa TLD in cooperation with the Internet technical community under the guidance of the IAB, as a limited use domain for Internet infrastructure applications…”

The ASO requests that ICANN specifically clarify this apparent exclusion of the IAB from this process and apparent exclusion of the IAB from future management of the TLD name arpa.

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