TELECOM Digest OnLine - Sorted: Owner of Stolen '' Can Sue VeriSign - Court

Owner of Stolen '' Can Sue VeriSign - Court

Patrick Townson (
Wed, 27 Oct 2004 20:12:01 -0500

This message originally appeared here in this Digest a little over
a year ago. I thought it was worth repeating now in view of the
readers who claim my lawsuit should be against Bealo, SA (regardless
of how inconvenient that may be) instead of the easier to reach
Public Interest Registry. PAT]

----- Original Message -----
From: "Monty Solomon" <>
Newsgroups: comp.dcom.telecom
Sent: Friday, July 25, 2003 10:04 PM
Subject: Owner of Stolen '' Can Sue VeriSign - Court

> By Elinor Mills Abreu

> SAN FRANCISCO, July 25 (Reuters) - The owner of ","
> once considered one of the Internet's hottest addresses, can
> seek payment from the company that improperly transferred the
> domain to a "con man" who later fled to Mexico when ordered to
> pay $65 million, a court ruled on Friday.

> The Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals in San Francisco ruled that
> "computer-geek-turned-entrepreneur" Gary Kremen can hold VeriSign
> Inc.'s (NASDAQ:VRSN) Network Solutions unit liable for handing the
> Web address over to a "con man."

> The decision has widespread implications for companies that register
> domains, which until now have not been held responsible when Web sites
> are switched from their rightful owners, a lawyer for the plaintiff
> said.

> -

Here is the way I see it:

1) Bealo Group SA are con artists and shysters. 2) I cannot force
them to do anything if they are in Switzerland, just as Kremen could
do nothing with the defendant having fled to Mexico. 3) In the above
case, we see that registrars *can* be held accountable for errors they
make. Now you are probably asking 'what errors did Public Interest
Registry make?'

1) what makes .ORG different than .COM is the nature of the web site.
2) .ORG was always traditionally defined as for use by non-profit
organizations, public service places, etc. ICANN did not
just toss .ORG into the same pot as .COM for good reasons; they are to
serve different categories of web sites.
3) I will suggest *it is possible* that PIR deliberatly and wilfully
chose to accept a porn site into the .ORG domain. I certainly do not
think their 'charter' as per ICANN rules allows that.

I would like to see the PIR charter, issued to them by ICANN or
whoever. I would like to see where in that charter it states that PIR
is free to (and as Mr. Kiprusoff states elsewhere in this issue)
*must* accept all applicants for web addresses **regardless of the
nature of their activities.** We are not speaking about _two_ history
web sites squabbling over the same address and which one is the better
of the two or 'more entitled' to the address or who got to the
registrar first, etc. I would not impose on PIR to sort that out,
nor be responsible. But when you have an established web site which
meets the criteria in (2) above for placement in .ORG and a web site
comes along _the very same day_ which has no place in .ORG to start
with -- by traditional net definitions, etc -- who pounces the instant
a domain becomes available for whatever reason and PIR makes no effort
to clarify the matter at all -- I will suggest is very negligent, if
their own charter is the guidepost -- then it becomes an actionable

Thank you, Mr. Kiprusoff for mentioning the PIR charter and its
obligations and responsibilities. Let's get it out here and look at
it, shall we? Either the charter for PIR *does* say those things, and
ICANN (which probably choreographed it) is guilty of trying to rewrite
years of internet traditions or it does not say those things and PIR
is the party fixing to get sued. And if it *does* say those things in
reference to the .ORG domain -- note I did **not** say the .COM
domain, where anything goes, it seems -- that seems rather careless
since Bealo SA could have as easily moved in on an .EDU domain where
someone was late paying the bill, unless you are now going to suggest
that ICANN wrote up this one very special charter for .ORG which makes
it equivilent to .COM in its activities.

Oh, and lest I forget, thanks also for your compliment on my writing
skills where X-Files was concerned. Anyway, let's go over that
charter. You want to fetch it and go first, or should I?


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