Cc: Hans Kraaijenbrink; Amadeu Abril i Abril; Ken Fockler
Subject: Reconsideration Request 99-3
In response to your reconsideration request [99-3] (posted at <http://www.icann.org/committees/reconsideration/recon-committee.htm>),
the Reconsideration Committee of the ICANN Board has made the following
[RC 99-3] The Reconsideration Committee recommends that the Board deny
Reconsideration Request 99-3. The request asks the Board to reconsider
its decision to block registration of ?.com and ~.com. Because the ICANN
Board has made no decisions relating to whether or not those domain
names can be registered, there is no decision that can be reconsidered.
Since the implementation of the Internet domain-name system in the
1980s, the specifications published and implemented by the Internet
community have not permitted labels making up domain names to have characters
other than letters, numbers, and internal hyphens. Througout this period,
the specifications for the format of domain names have been well-known
throughout the Internet technical community. They have been set forth
in several RFCs, including RFC
1035 (published in 1987) <ftp://ftp.isi.edu/in-notes/rfc1035.txt>
and RFC 1123 (published
in 1989) <ftp://ftp.isi.edu/in-notes/rfc1123.txt>.
The commonly accepted specifications are reflected in the functional
specification for the Shared Registry System, through which competitive
registrar services were introduced in the .com/.net/.org top-level domains
last year, which requires that labels contain letters, digits, or internal
hyphens. The use of domain names in a noncompliant format presents
interoperability problems. Among other things, domain names that violate
this format have the potential of causing software written in reliance
on these formats to malfunction, and several instances of actual malfunctions
have been identified.
The Reconsideration Committee finds the domain names identified in
Reconsideration Request 99-3 to be incompatible with the functional
specifications contained in the Shared Registry System. Any proposed
change in those specifications should be advanced through the appropriate
Internet standards-development organization, in this case the IETF.
This recommendation will be forwarded to the ICANN Board and will be
considered at the next ICANN Board meeting.
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