The Boston Group

The International Forum on the White Paper (IFWP) began an open, international, focused process through which more than a thousand people from all parts of the world came together at meetings held around the world to discuss the future of the Internet with particular emphasis on the management of Internet names and addresses.

These meetings produced a set of consensus points and proposals regarding the character and nature of the entity to be formed to assume this management role.

On September 17, 1998 a joint proposal was issued by Network Solutions, Incorporated and IANA.  This proposal contained a draft  Articles of Incorporation and the By-Laws of an "Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers" (ICANN).  That proposal was reissued on September 28 as a so-called, fifth iteration.  We have reviewed those documents and find that it still lacks any system of democratic checks or balances.  We have, however, incorporated certain changes in that September 28 version into our own proposal that we are submitting here.

It is our considered opinion that the IANA/NSI proposal is neither a product of the IFWP process nor does it conform to the IFWP consensus points.

Nor does it meet the standards required by the NTIA White Paper, either in terms of content or the process through which that proposal was derived.

A group of IFWP participants gathered at an open meeting on the weekend of September 19 and 20th, 1998 to see whether it was possible to reconcile the NSI/IANA draft with the IFWP consensus points.

We believe that we succeeded.

Our work is based on the input of the several hundred individuals and organizations who attended the four IFWP meetings in Virginia (USA), Geneva (Switzerland), Singapore, and Buenos Aires (Argentina) plus the input from several hundred more individuals who participated in debates on the IFWP, Domain Name Policy, and IETF mailing lists.

Our prime guide is  the list of consensus points reached by the participants in the IFWP.

We tried as much as possible to preserve the NSI/IANA joint draft.  Indeed, for the most part we made no changes.  We limited our work to those areas where we felt that change was essential, and even then we tried to minimize the impact on the existing documents.

It is our strong assertion that the these proposals represent a far more broadly based consensus than those found in the NSI/IANA draft.  In addition, all of our processes have been open - we have never had a single meeting which was closed to outsiders - and subject to open review, comment and modification.

Since the initial publication of our work we have received many comments and many public endorsements.  We  gratefully acknowledged the endorsements, and we have tried to incorporate such comments in the latest version of our proposal, which we present here.

As such we claim our work to represent a real consensus of the Internet Community as arrived at through a broad and open process, and to represent a true response to the NTIA White Paper.

These web pages contain the results of our work, an letter of submission to the United States, an Articles of Incorporation, and a By-Laws.

Summary of Changes

Letter of Submission

Articles of Incorporation


Articles of Incorporation


IFWP Background Materials

Updated: Tuesday, September 29, 1998 11:43:34 PM