Congratulations to ICANNwatch: They have moved their entire system to Slash, and it even seems to work. Let's hope that the moderation mechanisms built into the new software help to improve the style of discussions there.
A brief reminder: The extended comment period in response to the WHOIS Task Force's final report is about to run out. So far, only two individuals have made use of the opportuntiy to comment. Meanwhile, preparations are going on for the "implementation committee" which will consist of a considerable number of registrar (and registry, I suppose) representatives and a few task force members from "user" constituencies.
From Martin Schwimmer's trademark.blog: Registrar Immunized Under CDA Regarding Fictitious Whois Info.
Stuart Lynn has sent a letter to the IAB asking for technical advice on Verisign's latest changes to the .com/.net registry. Apparently, this step was taken in response to an e-mail from Paul Hoffman (known from the IETF's IDN working group) in which Paul points out a number of reasons why Verisign's latest additions are basically crap. He suggests that ICANN should demand that Verisign "stop giving incorrect answers to any query in .com and .net." That brings up the real question: What's an incorrect answer?
That's not a technical question: Technically, returning these A records is just fine, although it will confuse the hell out of users, and although the system may have been implemented poorly. The technical standards tell Verisign how to "say" something, not what to "say."
Instead, we are dealing with a contractual question: What records may the registry return in response to queries which don't correspond to registered domain names?
What makes this one even more interesting is the analogy to .museum's search service: Go to http://air.museum, for instance, and you'll be redirected to an index of third level domains. Basically, Verisign is just delivering a poor imitation of this service.
Another resolution from the January 20 meeting of the ICANN board: The date of the ICANN meetings in Carthage later this year has been changed from December 1-5 to October 27-31.
You can forget about WHOIS privacy problems, bulk access, and all the like: Today, you get that information for free, from NSI. They just sent me 1.7MB worth of e-mail addresses. Yes, that's right: I got a message from firstname.lastname@example.org with the subject ".ORG Domain Name Update" (they are the registrar of record for does-not-exist.org). That message contained about 86,000 e-mail addresses, from R over Z to _. One address per line. Time to do a transfer.
Ross points to another recipient of the message.