December 15, 2000
LATHAM & WATKINS
Perry J. Viscounty (Bar No. 132143)
Mark A. Finkelstein (Bar No. 173851)
650 Town Center Drive, Suite 2000
Costa Mesa, California 92626-1925
Telephone: (714) 540-1235
Facsimile: (714) 755-8290
Attorneys for Petitioner
The .TV Corporation International
The .TV Corporation International
1100 Glendon Avenue, 8th Floor
Los Angeles, CA 90024
Telephone (310) 481-3728
Fax (310) 481-3889
Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN)
4676 Admiralty Way, Suite 330
Marina del Rey, CA 90292
Re: Reconsideration of the dotNOM Consortium and the dotPRO Consortium Applications for the New Top Level Domain ("TLDs"): .nom and .pro
Dear Reconsideration Committee:
On behalf of the dotNOM and dotPRO Consortia, The .TV Corporation International ("dotTV") hereby formally requests reconsideration of the denial of the applications for the .nom and .pro TLDs. As set forth more fully below, the dotNOM and dotPRO Consortia respectfully submit that the ICANN staff failed to consider, or improperly disregarded, considerable evidence demonstrating that the dotNOM and dotPRO Consortia were appropriate selections for new TLDs. In addition, the dotNOM and dotPRO Consortia submit that the compressed time frame in which the TLD selection process took place gave rise to considerable errors and a failure to afford either Consortium an adequate opportunity to respond to ICANN staff concerns. Based upon the treatment afforded the dotNOM and dotPRO Consortia applications, dotTV also believes that other applicants were similarly mistreated. Pursuant to the Reconsideration Policy requirements, dotTV submits the following information:
On behalf of the dotNOM and dotPRO Consortia:
Anthony J. Bishop, Senior Vice President and General Counsel
The .TV Corporation International
1100 Glendon Avenue, 8th Floor
Los Angeles, CA 90024
Telephone: (310) 481-3728
Fax: (310) 481-3889
Reconsideration is sought for the denial by ICANN of dotNOM Consortium's application to operate a registry for the .nom TLD and dotPRO Consortium's application to operate a registry for the .pro TLD. Both the dotNOM and dotPRO applications were denied in the process of ICANN's threshold review and not allowed to proceed to the second level of comparative review with other applications. According to ICANN's own policies, all applications were to proceed to the second phase of evaluation unless both the technical team and the business/financial team each independently concluded that an application was unsound or infeasible. ICANN's compressed review period and elimination of critical review procedures resulted in a factually inaccurate conclusion that the dotNOM and dotPRO applications did not meet the threshold review criteria. ICANN wrongly awarded the new TLDs without properly completing the selection process.
ICANN selected the new TLD registry operators on November 16, 2000.
The dotNOM and dotPRO Consortia have each been denied the opportunity to operate a new TLD registry. ICANN's hurried procedure for the selection of new TLDs failed to provide an opportunity for a full and fair review and discussion of the dotNOM and dotPRO applications.
In addition, as an entity entrusted with certain aspects of the oversight of the DNS, ICANN has a duty to ensure that its public statements concerning the TLD selection process are truthful. The applicants and public at large are damaged when ICANN issues statements or conclusions that are factually inaccurate. ICANN represented to the Internet community that its award of new TLDs was based on a thorough and judicious examination process. ICANN did not, however, provide a full and fair review of every application. ICANN's rejection of the dotNOM and dotPRO applications without an adequate review process is one example of this. ICANN may have similarly damaged other applicants by granting TLDs without adequately ensuring the accuracy of its statements in its "Report on TLD Applications." ICANN's only opportunity to rectify this materially flawed procedure is to re-open the TLD selection process and complete the procedure in a fair and complete manner.
A. Failure to Comply with Bylaw Requirements
1. ICANN Bylaws Article III, Sec. 1 state: "The Corporation and its subordinate entities shall operate to the maximum extent feasible in an open and transparent manner and consistent with procedures designed to ensure fairness."
a. ICANN failed to conduct the TLD selection process in an open, transparent and fair manner. ICANN's award of new TLDs was conducted in violation of Article III, Sec. 1. of its own bylaws.
(1) From the outset, ICANN did not organize the TLD selection process to ensure fairness and maximize transparency. The selection criteria were vague, and applicants were not provided with any advance guidelines regarding the relative weight to be assigned to each criterion. Also troubling is the fact that applicants were not informed that they would not be given an opportunity to respond to staff criticism. Additionally, ICANN failed to explain at the outset of the TLD selection process that applicants would have to meet subjective threshold criteria in order to have an application fully reviewed in comparison to other applications.
(2) The time period for review of the applications was unreasonably compressed and inconsistent with ICANN's stated requirement of designing procedures to ensure fairness. On October 2, 2000, ICANN received 47 TLD registry operator applications, many consisting of well over 100 pages. On November 10, 2000, the ICANN staff issued its report on the applications. By attempting to consider nearly fifty applications in just five weeks, ICANN was unable to conduct its review in the fair manner required by its own bylaws. The unfortunate result of this cursory review process was that ICANN's staff report contained serious factual inaccuracies. This flawed staff report formed the basis for refusing to allow certain applications to proceed to the second level of review and ultimately for denial of such applications.
(3) The review process was conducted in a closed forum where applicants had no opportunity to discuss staff concerns prior to or after issuance of the staff report. In addition, the scheduled iterative part of the review process was eliminated due to time concerns. ICANN's refusal to conduct its review of the TLD applications in an open and transparent manner directly contravenes Article III. Sec. 1. of its own bylaws.
(4) The factually inaccurate staff report was issued one day prior to the commencement of the ICANN conference in Marina del Rey. Instead of acting to ensure fairness, ICANN's decision to issue its report immediately prior to the conference effectively deprived applicants of any opportunity to discuss or contest the report.
(5) The three-minute time period allotted to applicants to justify or defend their applications in front of the board was inadequate in light of (1) prior staff recommendations, (2) the factually inaccurate staff report, (3) the hundreds of pages of application material and (4) the shortage of time to critically examine the staff report with respect to other applications. It is unlikely any of the TLD applicants believe ICANN's allowance of only a three-minute rebuttal was a procedure designed to ensure fairness.
B. Mistreatment of the dotNOM Consortium Application
1. ICANN failed to properly address dotNOM Consortium's business/financial capabilities and therefore wrongly refused to allow the dotNOM Consortium to proceed to the second level of review.
a. As stated in Part II of this Request, ICANN's own rules concerning its TLD selection process demand that ICANN's technical and business/financial teams each independently determine that an application is unsound or infeasible. While a team may exclude an applicant based on a determination that the application was less persuasive than the other proposals in the same group, that conclusion must be based on the grounds of soundness and feasibility. ICANN's staff report fails to explain how dotNOM Consortium's application was determined to be unsound or infeasible by the business/financial team. While the report does discuss dotNOM's marketing plan, nothing in the report explains why the business/financial team concluded that this narrow element of dotNOM's proposal made its application unsound or infeasible. Therefore, ICANN wrongly excluded dotNOM Consortium from the second level of review.
2. ICANN also failed to properly address dotNOM Consortium's technical capabilities and therefore wrongly refused to allow the dotNOM Consortium to proceed to the second level of review. Specifically, ICANN's Report on the TLD Applications states: "The technical team concluded that the application of the dotNOM consortium did not demonstrate the technical ability to operate a TLD targeting a large group of potential registrants and end users with high reliability, good performance and strong security."
a. The technical team's conclusion is inaccurate because dotNOM Consortium's application thoroughly demonstrates the Consortium's technical ability to operate a TLD targeting a large group of potential registrants and end users with high reliability, good performance and strong security. The following excerpts from dotNOM Consortium's application demonstrate why the technical team's assessment of the Consortium's reliability, performance and security is incorrect.
(1) In specifically responding to section D15.2.11 concerning "System Reliability," dotNOM Consortium's application clearly states: "All of dotTV's web and DNS server hardware is Linux based and is clustered in quantities of a minimum of 10 servers per function. That is, in the Data Center, there are 10 Linux servers for web servers and 10 separate Linux servers for DNS services. The network hardware is duplicated within each data and DNS center and we use two manufacturers of the hardware to provide even further reliability. The database system was chosen because of its long history of use in high volume transactional situations. Further it is one of the few database systems that can be configured for near real time updates across a large geographical distance between the servers. Thus, if a disaster were to befall one or the other coasts the data center on the opposite coast should be available to continue operations with minimal or no interruption of services, DNS responses or data integrity issues." This portion of dotNOM Consortium's application adequately demonstrates the Consortium's ability to provide reliable operation of the .nom TLD. Therefore, ICANN's staff report to the contrary is inaccurate.
(2) dotNOM Consortium's application also directly responds to ICANN's concerns over its ability to provide good performance. For example, in describing its database capabilities, dotNOM Consortium s application provides: "Under its outsourcing arrangement with dotTV, DNC will utilize dotTV s current registry database which is IBM's DB2 Enterprise-Extended Edition. Its characteristics are very favorable for use in a registry model. It has extensive disaster recovery, fail over and "shared nothing" operational states. The web user interface application operates on top of the database. This application has been used by dotTV for a number of months providing registry functions for the .tv ccTLD. It incorporates requisite adding, deleting, and modification of data routinely as part of a registry's business. Features include durations of registrations, reminder of renewals, and financial reporting. dotTV s web and database interface is state-of-the-art, allowing requests and updates to be executed in seconds. This allows numerous updates of the zone file each day meaning that new registrants will be able to begin using their domain within a few hours of registration."
By questioning dotNOM Consortium's performance capabilities, ICANN directly contradicts the conclusion it reached in its preliminary TLD Application Analysis Chart. Released on November 9, 2000, the preliminary analysis credits the dotNOM Consortium with possessing the necessary experience and infrastructure to administer a new registry, concluding that the dotNOM Consortium "respond[ed] to all elements" of the application process, and possessed "wide Internet and technology experience." ICANN s reversal of this position in its staff report is inexplicable and inappropriate.
(3) ICANN s concerns regarding dotNOM Consortium s security strength are also unfounded. dotNOM Consortium s application directly responds to ICANN s security inquiry by stating: "Under its outsourcing arrangement with dotTV, DNC will utilize dotTV s existing security systems as described below. dotTV s current technical staff has previous experience securing e-commerce company web sites. This experience and conventional best practices for securing e-commerce sites is applied to dotTV s ccTLD data center sites and to each of the remote DNS centers. These measures currently include: limited port availability, SSH . . . wherever appropriate, and other data integrity reviews to ensure adequate security. These policies will continue to evolve as more is learned about best practices in Internet e-commerce security." Thus, dotNOM Consortium not only explained that it would utilize dotTV s existing successful security measures, but also related to ICANN its commitment to implement new e-commerce security measures as they improve and develop.
b. The practical experience and technical framework of dotNOM Consortium s technical registry service provider, dotTV, renders ICANN s criticisms regarding reliability, performance and security invalid.
(1) dotTV is one of the few operating registries that participated in the new gTLD application process. Unlike most of the other TLD applicants, dotTV possesses actual knowledge of what is required to successfully operate a registry. This experience is invaluable. As dotNOM Consortium s technical provider, dotTV s existing record of reliability, performance and security in connection with the .tv ccTLD is strong evidence that dotNOM Consortium will also excel in these areas.
(2) In addition to the benefit of registry operation experience, dotTV also provides dotNOM Consortium with an outstanding infrastructure. Built with state of the art equipment and designed for maximum reliability, performance and security, dotTV s existing technical capabilities should carry great weight with ICANN. Compared to other applicants that have only white board notions of how they intend to build their registries, dotTV s existing, market-tested technical abilities should have been regarded as superior to the other applicants and at a minimum should have survived ICANN s threshold review.
dotTV s registry function uses the conventional Berkeley Internet Name Domain, or BIND, application in each of its DNS Centers and a proprietary DNS service from an outsourced provider. The outsourced service is built upon an Oracle database that maintains domain names as indexed fields, rather than the flat file look-ups that the BIND protocol uses. Building the DNS service on top of a database enables much faster look-ups and DNS responses. dotTV s combined DNS infrastructure, DNS centers and outsourced DNC service allow dotTV to support up to 300,000 lookups per second on a global basis.
dotTV s technology platform is designed to handle a large volume of domain name registrations, domain name look-ups and general web site traffic. Each of dotTV s DNS sites was designed to handle the load that the .com, .net and .org sites currently handle across all of their 13 centers. This over-building provides dotTV a safety net that no other operating registry currently has and anticipates significant growth in the registry business of not only .tv but also other top level domains. As of September 30, 2000, dotTV was only using approximately one percent of its available capacity.
c. If the ICANN staff had any questions about the reliability, performance or security of dotNOM Consortium s technical infrastructure, the minimum appropriate response should have been to ask for clarification. Indeed, under any standard of fairness in the application process, ICANN should have provided dotNOM Consortium with an opportunity to respond to its concerns. As it was, however, ICANN did not ask dotNOM Consortium a single question regarding its technical capabilities, and it published statements that wrongly criticized dotNOM Consortium s technical abilities. ICANN s failure to provide dotNOM Consortium with the opportunity to address the specific technical concerns of performance, reliability and security contributed to the inaccuracy of ICANN s staff report.
3. ICANN s Report on the TLD Applications states: "The technical team concluded that the technical plan as presented was inconsistent with and insufficient for the load predicted by the applicant for the TLD, particularly at startup."
a. This statement is inaccurate because dotNOM Consortium s application materials clearly explain that its technical capabilities will enable it to more than adequately handle anticipated demand by any proposed standard.
(1) In the Statement of Policies accompanying its application, the dotNOM Consortium states that there will be heavy traffic in the startup period, and predicts an initial demand of 200,000 registrations per month. At the time the application was submitted, dotTV s servers could handle up to approximately 20,000 registrations per day. This translates to a capacity of 600,000 registrations per month and does in fact exceed demand expectations. Currently, dotTV s servers can handle approximately 50,000 registrations per day, or 1.5 million per month, which greatly surpasses any demand estimate.
(2) The dotNOM Consortium application clearly states: "DNC s peak capacity capabilities will be subject to the capacity capabilities of dotTV s existing infrastructure . . . dotTV believes it currently has the ability to process approximately 10,000 registrations a day at each of its two data centers. This is based on the cluster of 10 web servers and adequate credit card processing capacity. Each of the data centers clusters can easily be expanded to handle additional volumes of transactions.The vault space currently leased by dotTV would be adequate to grow the web server cluster to handle well over 2 million registrations per month. If further growth needs to be accommodated this could be addressed simply through leasing more collocation space, thereby allowing for virtually unlimited scalability." Thus, both the application and dotTV s actual operating registry infrastructure contradict ICANN S finding.
b. While ICANN may have felt dotNOM Consortium s statement of policy underestimated initial demand, the language in dotNOM Consortium s application should have alleviated any concerns regarding scalability and demand load. At a minimum, ICANN should have alerted dotNOM Consortium to its concern and provided an opportunity for clarification.
4. ICANN s Report on the TLD Application states that "the technical team also found the description of the security mechanisms to be unsatisfactory when compared with other proposals in this group."
a. As mentioned above in Part B.2.a.(3), dotNOM Consortium s application clearly and capably addresses ICANN concerns regarding the security of its registry operation.
b. dotTV, which provides dotNOM with technical registry services, currently applies the conventional best practices for securing e-commerce sites to its ccTLD data center sites and to each of its remote DNS centers. These best practices include: limited port availability, SSH, wherever appropriate, and other data integrity reviews to ensure adequate security. These policies will continue to evolve as more is learned about best practices in Internet e-commerce security. Additionally, dotTV incorporates a variety of security measures designed to protect domain name registration data. For example, dotTV s technology platform handles domain name updates through a [SSL]-protected web page instead of using conventional email templates. Also, the data passed over dotTV s secure channel is encrypted and digitally signed. dotTV s security features make its system less vulnerable to domain name deletions, rerouting and other disturbances that have from time-to-time plagued other registries. These facts were overlooked by ICANN and should have eased ICANN s concern s regarding dotNOM s security measures.
c. If the ICANN staff had any questions concerning dotNOM Consortium s security mechanisms, the minimum appropriate response should have been to ask for clarification. Both the dotNOM application language and dotTV s actual security mechanisms contradict ICANN s finding. ICANN failed to alert dotNOM Consortium of this concern and dotNOM Consortium was denied the opportunity to defend its security measures.
5. ICANN s Report on the TLD Applications states that the business team made the following conclusion: "[T]he application of the dotNOM Consortium was not as strong in significant ways, including its marketing plan and overall assessment of the market, as the other four applications."
a. ICANN s comment is unjustified because ICANN failed to adequately consider the utility of dotTV s prior TLD marketing experience, or the marketing and Internet experience of dotNOM s broad global consortium.
(1) dotTV has already acquired significant knowledge on how to market new TLDs by successfully launching the .tv TLD in April 2000 and growing it at an impressive rate. As dotNOM Consortium s provider of technical registry services, this experience and success answer any criticisms ICANN might have concerning dotNOM s specific application language.
(2) dotNOM Consortium members themselves also possess significant marketing and Internet experience that ICANN failed to properly consider. For example Lycos, Inc. is one of the leading Internet search and navigation engines and portals and has extensive relevant experience in marketing and Internet issues in general. XO Communications, Inc. is the largest holder of fixed wireless spectrum in North America, and SK Telecom Co, Ltd. is the largest wireless telecommunications company in Korea. These experienced companies are proficient in marketing and are at the forefront of their technological field. Two ICANN-accredited registrars make up the last two members of the consortium. 7DC, Inc. s recent emergence in Korea, and OnlineNIC, Inc. s status as the oldest accredited registrar in China bring to the Consortium invaluable marketing and Internet experience from the Far East. As the dotNOM Consortium application clearly indicates, the members of the Consortium provide additional depth to dotTV s existing marketing experience. Therefore, ICANN is unjustified in questioning dotNOM Consortium s ability to adequately market and promote the .nom TLD.
b. ICANN s conclusion concerning dotNOM Consortium s marketing assessment and ability contradict ICANN s previously articulated viewpoint. In its "Summary of Application of dotNOM Consortium," ICANN stated: "The strengths in this application lie in its understanding of the general marketplace . . . Overall, its treatment of its marketing plan, market size, estimated demand and resources to meet such demand appear to be adequate." ICANN s reversal of its analysis concerning dotNOM Consortium s marketing assessment and ability is inexplicable and inaccurate.
c. If the ICANN staff had any questions concerning dotNOM Consortium s marketing plan and abilities, the minimum appropriate response should have been to ask for clarification.
6. Had dotNOM Consortium s application been allowed to proceed to the second level of review, it would have met many of ICANN s stated objectives and benefited the Internet community.
a. dotNOM Consortium consists of a geographically diverse group of companies.
b. dotNOM Consortium proposed an attractive $3.50 registry fee that is substantially lower than the fee proposed by other applicants.
c. dotNOM Consortium has substantial Internet, marketing and registry operation experience.
d. dotNOM Consortium has the backing of substantial companies and is ready to commit substantial resources to the new TLD.
e. dotNOM Consortium is amenable to working with ICANN by adopting ICANN-determined best of class solutions to TLD roll out procedures.
1. The ICANN Staff Report failed to address dotPRO Consortium s technical capabilities and therefore improperly refused to allow dotPRO Consortium to proceed to the second level of review.
a. As stated in the ICANN Report, both the technical team and the business/financial team must reach independent conclusions that an application does not meet the threshold criteria to prevent the application from proceeding to the second phase of evaluation. Although dotPRO Consortium s application did not make it past ICANN s threshold review, the ICANN Report did not discuss any deficiencies found by the technical team in the application. In fact, the ICANN Report did not even address dotPRO Consortium s technical capabilities at all. Therefore, under its own rules, ICANN improperly excluded dotPRO Consortium s application for the .pro TLD from the second level of review.
2. The ICANN Staff Report failed to address dotPRO Consortium s business/financial capabilities and therefore improperly refused to allow dotPRO Consortium to proceed to the second level of review. Specifically, ICANN s Report on the TLD Applications states: "The dotPRO Consortium used the same assumptions and pro forma figures for its .pro application as it did for its .nom application. Since the professional name space and the personal name space have different competitive profiles, demand expectations and adoption curves, the business/financial team concluded that the dotPRO Consortium s application lacked a level of specificity and the figures were more applicable for the .nom application."
a. The market for domain names is growing rapidly and is highly uncertain. The dotNOM and dotPRO Consortia conducted independent analyses into the market sizes of .nom and .pro and determined separately that they are likely to be similar in size. ICANN wrongly cited the dotPRO Consortium application as inaccurate because its financial assumptions mirror those of the dotNOM Consortium. dotPRO Consortium s use of a comparable model in a highly uncertain market should not cause its application to fail.
b. One reason for the similarity of the models is that dotPRO Consortium s vision of the dotPRO domain was much more open than that conceived by other applicants. dotPRO Consortium s application clearly stated that its .pro TLD would be self-regulating and that no certifications or restrictions would be required. The scalability of this model is likely to be much closer to the .nom domain than that to a .pro domain which has unrealistic and unscalable requirements of physical review and evaluation of professional documents from around the world. ICANN s decision to categorize dotPRO Consortium s application as "Restricted Commercial" (a category that did not even exist at the beginning of the application process) and the conclusions drawn from such reclassification demonstrates a fundamental misunderstanding of dotPRO Consortium s proposal and an inappropriate reason to exclude the application from the second stage of analysis.
c. As an applicant who paid the $50,000 application fee, dotPRO Consortium s proposal should have been evaluated on its own merit and without regard to dotNOM Consortium s proposal.
d. If ICANN had any concerns about the similarity of the two models, the minimum appropriate response should have been to ask for clarification.
3. Had dotPRO Consortium s application been allowed to proceed to the second level of review, it had many attributes that meet ICANN s stated objectives and that would have benefited the Internet community.
a. dotPRO Consortium consists of a geographically diverse group of companies.
b. dotPRO Consortium proposed a $3.50 registry fee that is substantially lower than the fee proposed by other applicants. In fact, ICANN selected a registry operator who proposed a $6 registry fee for the .pro TLD. dotPRO Consortium s management of the .pro TLD would result in savings of $2.50 per domain name registered. This fee reduction of nearly 42% per domain name would be a tremendous benefit to the Internet community. ICANN disserved the public by refusing to allow dotPRO Consortium s application to proceed to the second level.
c. dotPRO Consortium has substantial internet, marketing and registry operation experience
d. dotPRO Consortium has the backing of substantial companies and is ready to commit substantial resources to the new TLD
e. dotPRO Consortium is amenable to working with ICANN by adopting ICANN-determined best of class solutions to TLD roll out procedures.
In response to this Request for Reconsideration, ICANN should cease negotiating any contracts with applicants selected as registry operators on November 16, 2000. As an entity entrusted with supervising certain aspects of the DNS, ICANN must complete the TLD selection process in a fair and proper manner. Any selection process failing to meet these criteria undermines ICANN s authority as the organization overseeing the technical coordination of Internet addresses. The existing TLD selections lack legitimacy since ICANN failed to conduct a thorough and judicious application process. Serious mistakes were made in the evaluation of the dotNOM and dotPRO applications, as detailed above, and it is likely that serious mistakes were also made in the evaluation of other applications. ICANN must therefore re-open the new TLD selection process and provide a fair opportunity for every applicant to address ICANN s concerns and defend its proposal. By taking such action, ICANN will not only enhance its own reputation as an entity worthy of supervising the DNS, but will also establish legitimacy for the applicants eventually awarded the new TLDs.
dotTV, on behalf of the dotNOM and dotPRO Consortia, requests a temporary stay of all of the November 16, 2000 TLD awards. In the alternative, dotTV, on behalf of the dotNOM and dotPRO Consortia, requests a temporary stay of the .name and .pro TLD awards.
Failure to grant a temporary stay of the new TLD awards will result in irreparable harm to the dotNOM and dotPRO Consortia as well as all other rejected applicants. First, neither of the consortia will ever obtain the ability to operate a registry for the .nom or .pro TLDs. Other applicants similarly denied will also be deprived of this same opportunity. Additionally, without a stay of the new TLD awards, all applicants will be denied the opportunity to have their applications fully and fairly reviewed. Unless a stay is granted, ICANN will have illegitimately awarded new TLDs without properly assessing each application. Further, the public s confidence in the ability of registry operators awarded TLDs through such a closed and unfair process may be damaged. Ultimately, ICANN runs the risk of undermining its own legitimacy unless it halts negotiations and re-opens the TLD selection process.
ICANN already possesses all of the documents supporting this request.
 According to the Reconsideration Policy adopted pursuant to ICANN Bylaws, Art. III, Sec. 4(a), "Any person affected by an action of the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers may request review or reconsideration of that action by the Board of Directors."
 See Report on the TLD Applications: Methodology, <http://www.icann.org/tlds/report/report-ii-09nov00.htm>. "Where the technical team and the business/financial team each independently concluded that an application did not demonstrate soundness and feasibility or did not demonstrate these factors as persuasively as other proposals for the same or similar TLD string, that application did not proceed past initial threshold examination, except as specified in this report. All other applications proceeded to the second phase of evaluation, even if they were deemed lacking by one of these two teams."
 See Report on TLD Applications: Application of the August 15 Criteria to Each Category or Group, <www.icann.org/tlds/report/report-iiib1b-09nov00.htm>.
 See supra, note 2.
 See infra, Part V.B.5. (vigorously opposing ICANN s criticism of dotNOM s marketing ability and assessment).
 See supra, note 3, at Personal Group.
 Registry Operator s Proposal: The dotNOM Consortium, at D15.2.11.
 Id. at D15.2.3.
 Preliminary TLD Application Analysis Chart, November 9, 2000.
 Registry Operator s Proposal: The dotNOM Consortium, at D15.2.9.
 See supra, note 3, at "Personal Group".
 Registry Operator s Proposal: The dotNOM Consortium, at D15.2.10.
 See supra, note 3.
 See supra, note 3.
 Summary of Application of dotNom Consortium, <http://www.icann.org/tlds/report/nom2.html>.
 See supra, note 2.
 Report on TLD Applications: Application of the August 15 Criteria to Each Category or Group, Restricted Commercial Group, <www.icann.org/tlds/report/report-iiib1b-09nov00.htm>.