The Internet Assigned Numbers Authority (IANA), as part of the administrative functions associated with management of the Domain Name System root, is responsible for receiving requests for delegation and redelegation of top-level domains, investigating the circumstances relevant to those requests, and reporting on the requests.
This report gives the findings and conclusions of the IANA on its investigation of a request for redelegation of .GD, the country-code top-level domain (ccTLD) for Grenada.
Grenada is a Caribbean country with a population of approximately 90,000, forming the southern part of the Grenadines. The country is assigned the ISO 3166-1 alpha 2 code of “GD”.
On 3 June 1992, IANA approved a request for the initial delegation of the .GD ccTLD. The assigned administrative and technical contacts were Loretta Simon and Felix Ramos respectively. The registration activities appear to have been undertaken by the University of Puerto Rico by Mr Ramos.
In May 2000, the IANA received a request to redelegate the .GD domain to the Government of Grenada, with technical support provided by Sean Jackson — the manager of AdamsNames, a registry services company. The motivation for the action was that the domain was not being operated in the national interest, and that the government wishes to commence an improved service.
This was followed by a protracted evaluation, which ultimately did not result in a delegation. According to IANA’s research, this does not appear to be due to a defect in the application. The records support that it was due to delays caused by contractual negotiations, as well as complications caused by a simultaneous redelegation of another ccTLD, which involved a number of the same parties.
On 1 December 2005, a new redelegation request was lodged with IANA. This request, which is now under evaluation, seeks delegation of .GD to the National Telecommunications Regulatory Commission (NTRC). It is proposed that the Chairman of the NTRC, Dr Linus Spencer Thomas, fill the administrative contact role — with the technical contact role fulfilled by Amaryllis Investments Ltd.
IANA received a formal letter of government approval, dated 6 February 2006, from Gregory Bowen, the Minister of Agriculture, Lands, Forestry, Fisheries, Public Utilities and Energy. In that letter, it is noted that the National Telecommunications Regulatory Commission has been appointed under the auspices of Act No. 31 of 2000.
In order to meet the technical competence requirements for redelegation, IANA ascertained that Amaryllis Investments is a wholly owned subsidiary of AdamsNames, a registry services provider. They have informed IANA that in practice, the domain will be operated by the AdamsNames organisation. AdamsNames is currently responsible for the operation of domains such as .MS, .TC, and .VG.
IANA attempted to contact the Administrative and Technical Contacts associated with the domain name to obtain their assent. Loretta Simon, the Administrative Contact, no longer works for the Supporting Organisation, appears unreachable, and is no longer involved in the day-to-day administration of the organisation. She did however instigate the original request for redelegation in 2000 to assign the domain to the government and AdamsNames, so it can be reasonably inferred that she was supportive in lieu of any additional responses.
The Technical Contact at the University of Puerto Rico consented to the reassignment as requested in response to questioning by IANA.
On 18 July 2006 the ICANN Board of Directors considered the request, and authorized the President of ICANN to move forward with the delegation of the .GD top-level domain to the National Telecommunications Regulatory Commission.
This report is being provided under the contract for performance of the IANA function between the United States Government and ICANN. Under that contract, ICANN performs the IANA function, which includes receiving delegation and redelegation requests concerning ccTLDs, investigating the circumstances pertinent to those requests, and issuing a report documenting IANA’s findings.
In its role as investigator of delegation requests, IANA is guided by the practices summarized in:
“Domain Name System Structure and Delegation” (RFC 1591). This document describes the practices relating to delegations at its publication in 1994.
“Internet Domain Name System Structure and Delegation” (ICP-1). This document represents an ICANN-written update of the portions of RFC 1591 dealing with ccTLDs and reflects subsequent evolution of the policies followed by the IANA through May, 1999.
“The Governmental Advisory Committee Principles for Delegation and Administration of ccTLDs” (GAC Principles). This document serve as “best practices” to guide governments in assuming proper roles with respect to the Internet's naming system.
In considering the delegation of a ccTLD, IANA seeks input from both the requesting party as well as from persons and/or organizations that may be significantly affected by the change in the top-level DNS hierarchy, particularly those within the nation or territory the ccTLD designates. As noted in ICP-1, the parties affected include the relevant government or public authority: "The desires of the government of a country with regard to delegation of a ccTLD are taken very seriously. The IANA will make them a major consideration in any TLD delegation/transfer discussions."
Taking these three documents into consideration, the evaluation of a delegation request involves determining facts that relate to the applicant’s capacity to meet the following criteria:
Operational and technical skills
Operator in country
In summary, the applicant’s credentials as they relate to the enumerated criteria are:
Operational and technical skills.
The operator will be AdamsNames, which has a well established history of performed ccTLD registry operations.
Operator in country.
The supporting organisation is the National Telecommunications Regulatory Commission of Grenada, with the administrative contact as the Director of that organisation.
The applicant has made undertakings to IANA that registrations will be performed on a first-come first-served basis that is fair and equitable.
The ICANN Government Advisory Committee Principles observes that the Internet’s naming system is “a public resource … administered in the public or common interest.” In general, ICANN’s GAC recognizes that each government has the ultimate responsibility within its territory for its national public policy objectives, however in the case of a redelegation, this may be tempered by ICANN’s responsibility to ensure the Internet DNS continues to provide an effective and interoperable global naming system.
The Government has been the initiator of the request, and actively supports the reassignment. The Supporting Organisation is proposed to be an arm of the government, with day-to-day operation outsourced to a competent registry operator.
Based upon investigations and research, IANA believes the applicant has met the basic criteria to support the redelegation request, and the ability of the new operators to establish a fully functioning registry should improve the ability of the local Internet community to utilise the .GD domain.
According to RFC 1591 and ICP-1, IANA needs to respect the ability for a local Internet community as well as local law and local government to make decisions about the operation of a TLD.
IANA therefore recommends that the .GD domain be redelegated to the National Telecommunications Regulatory Commission of Grenada as per their request.