166 page report describes plan to completely scrap WHOIS as we know it.
Last year I wrote about a plan to scrap Whois as we know it and replace it with a new Registration Directory Service (RDS).
The initial proposal, created by an ICANN working group, was rather complicated and 49 pages long.
Now the Expert Working Group has issued its final report. It weighs in at 166 pages and is sure to be a hot topic at the upcoming ICANN meeting in London.
I read the executive summary and started wading deep into the report. It’s really long. It’s really complicated. The nuance will be debated for many years before anything like what is proposed is enacted.
Rather than get into the weeds, here’s my 30,000 foot view.
The proposal takes what is a very simple, yet somewhat flawed, system. It considers the competing demands of registrants, law enforcement, intellectual property interests…and creates an extremely complicated system. A system that will certainly have unintended or unanticipated consequences.
The report’s authors suggest that the proposal needs to be accepted in whole. Changing an item here or there will make the whole point of it crumble.
This reminds me a bit of plans to cut the debt in the U.S. A group gets together, comes up with a plan to accomplish the goal and says this needs to be all or nothing.
But of course it’s never all or nothing. Interests get involved, cut out the meat of it, and you’re left with something that doesn’t accomplish the original goal.
That’s what’s going to happen here.
If you care about Whois, you should read this introductory blog post and take a look at the report.
Grab a big cup of coffee before you get started.