C19. Please describe in detail mechanisms that you propose to implement
to ensure compliance with ICANN-developed policies and the requirements
of the registry agreement.
The DotOrg Foundation plans to fully comply with ICANN policies, including
the requirements of the ICANN Registry Agreement and the .org TLD registrar-registry
agreement ("RRA") to be executed between the DotOrg Foundation
and ICANN-accredited registrars. Any deviation of the .org RRA from the
current RRA in place for new gTLDs will be negotiated by the DotOrg Foundation
and ICANN. In short, the Foundation will be legally bound to comply with
current ICANN policies and future policies developed through the ICANN
consensus process per 4.4 of the ICANN Registry Agreement. The Foundation
will be prepared, per its agreement with ICANN, to submit to independent
audits of such compliance.
The DotOrg Foundation will have the resources and informed guidance of
a Board of Directors, Advisory Council, and staff, including legal and
policy counsel, to ensure implementation of ICANN policies. The DotOrg
Foundation will require Registry Advantage or any other vendors delivering
registry services to likewise comply, and it will have the staff and processes
designed to oversee their compliance with ICANN policies and the requirements
of the Registry Agreement and the RRA. In fact, the DotOrg Foundation
has already insisted on the right to require its vendors to supply such
information as may be needed for audits, which would be used to monitor
compliance. See Attachment F1.
In an important sense, compliance with ICANN policies is already in place
today. The DotOrg Foundation vendor for registry services - Registry
Advantage – has extensive operational experience in managing DNS-related
entities consistently with ICANN’s policies and technical management responsibilities.
Vendor Experience enabling Compliance
The DotOrg Foundation will require Registry Advantage to implement ICANN
policies, including equal treatment of all registrars using the system,
protection of registrars’ confidential information, registrars’ equal
access to the Whois database, compliance of the registration system with
the UDRP, compliance with privacy issues, and other such registry issues.
The Foundation will oversee such implementation; but the experiences of
Registry Advantage and Register.com described below illustrate that the
Foundation can rely on Registry Advantage’s existing knowledge of and
compliance with ICANN policies:
- Register.com was the first testbed registrar to register .com, .net
and .org domain names, and as such, helped to shape initial domain name
registration policies and practices. Register.com has operated for
over four years consistently with ICANN’s technical and policy management.
- Registry Advantage participates in the Internet Engineering Task
Force (IETF) working groups on technical management of the DNS, in particular
working on the evolving next generation registry-registrar protocol.
Registry Advantage will continue such collaboration in order to ensure
continued compliance with IETF policies and protocols.
- Register.com was instrumental in two successful new gTLD registry
bids - .info and .pro – whose accomplishment relied upon – and whose
implementation continues to rely on - understanding and compliance with
- As the registry operator for RegistryPro’s .pro gTLD, Registry Advantage
must already comply with the requirements of the ICANN Registry Agreement,
including the appendices thereto. Registry Advantage’s systems and
facilities have been built with those specifications in mind, and its
staff trained to comply with Equal Access and Code of Conduct restrictions.
Since the .pro Registry Agreement is substantially similar to the .org
model Registry Agreement, Registry Advantage is prepared at the outset
to offer the level of compliance that ICANN would need.
- In order to operate the .org TLD in a manner that is consistent with
ICANN’s function and responsibilities, Registry Advantage has agreed
to DotOrg Foundation oversight of vendor compliance.
- Finally, Registry Advantage already offers technical, billing and
customer service operations for ccTLD registries consistently with ICANN’s
policies and technical management of the DNS.
Key ICANN Policies and Mechanisms to Comply
Among the ICANN policies embodied within the requirements of the registry
agreement, it is useful to highlight some key compliance measures that
the registry and its sub-contractors will meet:
- Operate and maintain in a stable and secure manner the authoritative
primary and secondary name servers of the .org, TLD adequate to resolve
names within .org for users throughout the Internet, and any sub-domains
over which they retain administrative authority, and ensure that the
zone file and accurate and up-to-date registration data is continuously
available to ICANN for purposes of verifying and ensuring the operational
stability of the .org domain. The DotOrg Foundation has insisted
in its vendor agreement and commitment letter (see Attachment F1) that
Registry Advantage’s technical commitments in the final, signed Services
Agreement meet ICANN requirements.
- Inform ICANN in a timely manner of any changes to .org TLD's contact
information held by ICANN. Same commitment.
- Ensure the safety and integrity of the registry database, including
the establishment of a data escrow for the registry data. Same commitment.
- Abide by ICANN developed policies concerning: interoperability of
.org with other parts of the DNS and Internet; operational capabilities
and performance of the registry; and the obtaining and maintenance of,
and public access to, accurate and up-to-date contact information for
.org registrants. Same commitment.
- Provide an interactive web page and centralized Whois service, with
public query-based access to a real time updated database. Operate the
centralized, authoritative and shared database of .org domain names,
in compliance a new service level agreement. Update the database, per
commands received through registrars. Same commitment.
- Pay the registry’s contribution to ICANN's cost of operation in accordance
with an equitable scale, based on ICANN's total funding requirements
(including reserves), developed by ICANN on the basis of consensus.
The DotOrg Foundation will sign a Registry Agreement requiring it
to pay such contribution, and has already accounted for the current
level of ICANN fees in its budget.
- Comply with the UDRP or other applicable dispute policies, including
providing for registry hold or take down of domain name registrations
as appropriate. In doing so, the registry will cooperate with WIPO
and ICANN. As an existing TLD, .org does not require a Sunrise Period
of the type implemented by new TLDs. The DotOrg Foundation will monitor
intellectual property developments, including any new Whois requirements,
and implement new ICANN policies or require Registry Advantage to implement
such policies in providing the Registry Function.
- Provide equivalent access to registrars and charge them equal fees.
The DotOrg Foundation expects to sign a Registry Agreement and RRAs
with registrars requiring these commitments. Under the Foundation’s
oversight, Registry Advantage will operate a registry system that provides
equivalent access. Moreover, Registry Advantage’s commitments to 24/7
technical support for registrars, provision of toolkits, staged transition
plan, and high level service level commitments will ensure that no registrar
faces undue hurdles in access and operability.
Finally, other appropriate ICANN consensus policies, such
as those relating to dispute resolution, stability, innovation, and competition,
may directly effect ICANN’s technical management of the DNS. The DotOrg
Foundation and its vendors will also abide by such policies.
Not only will the DotOrg Foundation make commitments necessary
to comply with ICANN policies, it will sign contracts with participating
registrars, based on the current registry-registrar agreements found in
Exhibit F to the current gTLD contracts, such that registrars’ compliance
with ICANN policies will also be mandated.