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Request to ICANN's President not to sign the .aero agreement (4 December 2001)

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Date: Tuesday, 04 December 2001
From: Edward Hasbrouck
Subject: Signing of .aero agreement
To: Mr. M. Stuart Lynn, President, ICANN <>

Dear Mr. Lynn,

This morning I submitted a request for reconsideration of the .aero agreement, and for a temporary stay pending reconsideration, to the Committee on Reconsideration of the Board of Directors of ICANN.

I appeal to you not to sign the .aero agreement until the Reconsideration Committee and the Board have acted on my request for a temporary stay.

Nothing the Board has done requires you to sign the .aero agreement. At most, interpreting the action (or inaction) of the Board on .aero in the broadest terms, you might be authorized — not required — to sign the draft of the .aero agreement that was posted 20 November 2001 to the ICANN Web site.

Even if you consider yourself authorized to sign the .aero agreement, it would be a permissible, and an appropriate, exercise of your discretion not to sign the .aero agreement while a request for a stay of signing is pending.

All of the reasons for a stay given in item 6 of my request for reconsideration are also reasons for you not to sign the .aero agreement while the request for a stay is pending. Only in circumstances of urgent necessity should action be taken while a request for a stay of that action is pending. There is no such urgency in this matter.

Under the Reconsideration Policy, the Reconsideration Committee will endeavor to complete its work and submit its recommendation to the Board within 30 days of the filing of my request. The request for a temporary stay should be acted on much sooner.

Waiting less than 30 days for the Reconsideration Committee to consider and act on my request for a stay will cause only minimal delay, and no significant or irreparable damage.

On the other hand, if you sign the .aero while the request for a stay is pending, ICANN might be bound by that agreement even if the Reconsideration Committee finds that it is unauthorized, contrary to ICANN’s Bylaws, or for any other reason should not be signed. Thus, if you sign the agreement now, it might be impossible for the Reconsideration Committee to order any meaningful corrective action. This would deprive both the Reconsideration Committee and the party requesting reconsideration (me) of the opportunity for meaningful reconsideration.

Please feel free to contact me directly if you would like to discuss this request, if you have any questions, or if you would like any additional information or clarification.

I’m sorry that it is necessary for me to take up your time, or that of the Reconsideration Committee, on this matter. In August 2001, as soon as I began to suspect that the .aero agreement might be significantly different from the original .aero proposal, I made my concerns known to ICANN in my comments to the ALSC, and I asked SITA for more information and for an opportunity to participate in the policy-making process. I deeply regret that both ICANN staff and SITA chose to proceed with the drafting and negotiation of an agreement which they knew was objectionable to affected stakeholders, without providing any opportunity for participation in the process until the draft was complete and posted for Board approval.


Edward Hasbrouck

  • Passenger air travel and travel e-commerce consumer advocate, author, and FAQ-maintainer
  • Member-at-large of the Air Transport Community and the “.aero” gTLD constituency

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