Steinberg, attorney and
consultant, represents himself
and "quite a few of the
unaligned people who are
interested in this arcane
subject." Governments ask his
opinion, he says, "but I don't
1998 by Dan
position is that is it is not necessary to
have just one winner in this shoot-out. So
why lock into one solution? Why not give
everyone a chance? Three principles:
1. Apply KISS to
It is not a good
idea nor is it practical for registrars to
play censor, court, tribunal, board, etc.
Registration for domains should be
first-come-first-served. No other scheme
makes any sense and creates inequities.
Complaints can and should be dealt with
through the courts, even domain/trademark
2. Monopoly TLDs,
Shared TLDs, who cares?
There is no
technical reason why competing registries
and competing registration models
(monopoly vs. shared) cannot co-exist. As
long as there is no TLD conflict, all
models are possible. There is no real
technical limit on the number of TLDs
possible. Because of the legal uncertainty
surrounding some domains like .web, the
experimental (Alternic, eDNS, uDNS, etc.)
should all be grandfathered as monopoly
TLDs. They all work together already
without breaking the net.
3. Rule of Law,
Orderly Transfer, yada, yada, yada.
Who cares who
really 'owns' the Internet? It doesn't
matter and only a few people really care.
What is required is an orderly transition.
Let the US govt. state who they are
transferring interim control to, and let
the Internet get on with self-governance.
A broad-based conference should be
convened, inviting backbone providers,
ISPs, content providers, code providers
like Microsoft and Netscape, standards
A few working
groups (to get rough consensus and running
code to propose) may be needed in the
beginning. The key is that the working
groups are formed from broad-based
consensus, not on an ad-hoc basis. When
you get people in a room, it is easier to
get agreement. When everything is done via
e-mail, personality defects get in the