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Public Comments on the "Consultation Paper on the Review on Administration and Assignment of Internet Domain Names and Internet Protocol Addresses in Hong Kong"

Consultation Paper on the Review
on Administration and Assignment of Internet Domain Names
and Internet Protocol Addresses in Hong Kong


Thank you for the opportunity to review the proposals on administration and assignment of Internet domain names. I obtained comments from several staff with special expertise in this area, several of whom informed me they had also had opportunities earlier in the process to provide input. Their comments are quite supportive of the approaches recommended in the consultation paper. My comments below touch on a few of the major issues.

2. The allocation of second level names under the .hk country code by the JUCC and its predecessor has served the community well during a period of rapid and growth and expansion. As the universities were in the forefront of the new Internet technologies, as evidenced by the fact that Hong Kong's first ISP began as a community service provided by HKUST, the university-based organization was ideally placed to make sure that local developments kept pace with the international trends. However, as the focus of the Internet has shifted from the academic community to the private sector, it is clearly time to move this activity to a more independent body. We agree with the reasoning of the Task Force and support its recommendation to establish a non-statutory non-profit-making corporation for this purpose. If Government accepts the Task Force's recommendation that JUCC play a role in spinning off such a corporation, we will do whatever we can to support this development.

3. The Task Force has identified a number of complex issues regarding domain name registration, and we support its conclusions and recommendations. To a significant extent, the Task Force wisely recommends leaving alone those procedures that have been working well and can be foreseen to continue to work well. In the areas where improvements are either needed now or can be anticipated, it has made sensible recommendations.

4. The recommendations on dispute resolution are particularly timely. As use of .hk domain names increases, the likelihood of disputes will rise steeply. The Task Force has proposed a sensible procedure based on the international model adopted by ICANN. This certainly seems workable in the interim, and consideration of setting up a more formal tribunal can await experience with this approach.

5. I hope these comments will be of some assistance.


Peter N. Dobson, Jr
Associate Vice-President for Academic Affairs