WHOIS is a online information service that requires the publication of the name, address and telephone number of all registrants of second level domain names. The WHOIS issue is one that ICANN has been struggling on for a very long time.  It is the tussle between the requirements of Privacy and the requirements of Law Enforcement Agencies and others, including consumers, to know who is responsible for the of web content that is shown under a domain name such as yourname.gay. The GNSO currently has 3 Working Groups and ICANN has one Expert Working Group (EWG) engaged on this topic, and all of them are close to making recommendations that will affect the registrants of all new domain names, including those in .gay.

The topics under discussion in the WHOIS working groups includes topic such as  under what jurisdiction is a person’s private information governed and the methods of recording international information in languages other than English.  the EWG is concerend with the larger issues of data collection by authorities and privacy.  this group is working on a recommendation that all data on all registrants, including the registrant for yourdomain.gay, be kept in one globally available database.

 


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