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The gTLD Registries Constituency Statement concerning the VERISIGN SETTLEMENT AGREEMENT

This statement responds to the request from Vint Cerf dated November 10, 2005, for constituency input on the VERISIGN SETTLEMENT AGREEMENT.

I. Constituency Position

The Registry Constituency welcomes the progress made to date between ICANN and VeriSign to settle the .COM litigation and to develop a more constructive relationship for the future.

The Registry Constituency supports the approval of the proposed settlement of the pending litigation.

While the registry constituency does not have a consensus position concerning the merits of individual terms of the proposed .com agreement, inclusion of certain terms exclusively in this agreement and without any apparent commitment by ICANN that such improvements will be offered to other registries, raises a question.

To eliminate the possibility that the settlement could afford the dominant player an unfair competitive advantage, ICANN should commit to extend certain specific contract improvements, such as presumptive renewal, to similarly situated registry operators on an equitable and non-discriminatory basis.  While the diversity of registries precludes an exhaustive list of specific terms, principals of equity and fairness should guide ICANN’s contractual relationships with registries.

II. Method for Reaching Agreement on RyC Position

The Registries Constituency position was adopted by the Constituency’s members at a meeting dated 1 December 2005. VeriSign and NeuLevel abstained from voting.

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