ICANN—Now and Then: ICANN’s Reform and Its Problems

By: Kim G. von Arx

This paper sheds some light upon the major problem arising from the current normative infrastructure of the DNS and provides a possible solution to the current physical problem of the DNS. The paper’s main focus is the single-entity control of the A Root. The paper uses as a starting point the Blueprint prepared by the Committee on ICANN Evolution and Reform and raises the question: Has this reform done anything to resolve the single-entity control of the A Root? The paper argues that the reform has done nothing to solve the problem because the international privatization of the DNS merely substitutes the administration of the DNS function without making changes to the normative infrastructure of the DNS. In light of the above, the paper argues that there is a need to declare independence from a one-entity controlled DNS. The suggested approach is to share authority over the root by acknowledging that countries that are accountable to their populations are the authorities for their own ccTLDs. Once technical and political independence has been achieved, the technical and, to some degree, political management of the DNS should be exercised through an international body. In order to initiate a discussion for a truly international body this paper offers nine principles that a new international ccTLD cooperation organization should observe when working on its own creation.

Cite: 2003 Duke L. & Tech. Rev. 0007