ICANN ' S management of theInternet Domain Name and Addressing System (DNS)
Dear Mr. Einzinger,
The United States Department of State asked the Embassy to convey to you the attached demarche and seek your input and views concerning ICANN ' s management of the Internet domain name and addressing system (DNS).
In 2006, the United States Government must make a series of policy decisions regarding its relationship to the InternetCorporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN). These are domestic decisions to be made by the Department ofCommerce (DOC), through the National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA), but they will be watched closely by the international community, particularly given the ongoing debate over the issue of Internet governance. The oversight and contractual roles currently played by the DOC in relation to ICANN have generated considerable international attention and have become targets for criticism from countries as demonstrated in the deliberations at the 2005 UN World Summit on the Information Society (WSIS). The perception of unilateral United States Government control of the Internet DNS continues to fuel proposals to either transfer United States Government oversight of ICANN and our responsibility for changes to the authoritative root zone file to some form of multilateral/UN oversight, or to turn these resources completely over to ICANN. It is in this context that the United States Government ' s decisions regarding its relationship to ICANN over the course of the coming months are of particular importance to the international community.
Given that the current Memorandum of Understanding of 1998, under which DOC entered into a joint partnership project with ICANN to achieve the transition to private sector management of the DNS, expires on September 30, 2006, NTIA,through a Notice of Inquiry (NOI), is seeking input from all interested parties on the progress to date of the transition of thetechnical coordination and management of the Internet DNS to ICANN. The NOI has been issued in the Federal Register and NTIA has announced a public meeting (July 26, 2006) to discuss issues associated with this transition. The full text ofthe NOI is available at: www.ntia.doc.gov
The United States Department of State asked the Embassy to use the talking points provided in the attachment below to inform the Austrian Government as well as private sector and civil societies, of NTIA ' s public consultation process andinvite your participation. You may be sent input in writing to NTIA at: dnstransition (a) ntia.doc.gov. Further details onsending views may be found in the NOI. Comments received will be posted to the NTIA site at: www.ntia.doc.gov.
The United States Government appreciates your cooperation and comments, of which we would appreciate receiving acopy.
With best regards,
Economic and Political Section
1090 Vienna, Boltzmanngasse 16
Phone: (43)(1)313 39 - 2387
Fax: (43)(1)313 39 - 2900
Internet e-mail:janotahx (a) state.gov
National Telecommunications and Information Administration