[WSIS CS-Plenary] Governance implications of the Macedonia story
mueller at syr.edu
Tue Oct 5 01:42:48 BST 2004
The suspension of domain name registration service to
Macedonia and other targeted countries is a very important
story that reveals the need for a more rationalized approach
to Internet governance.
This incident is very instructive and anyone interested
in the WGIG should pay attention to how it happened
and how it is handled in the future. It involves the use of
IP addresses as a regulatory tool, the globalization of
the registrar business, and the nature of the global
contracts through which ICANN's internet governance
Cheers for Veni for bringing it to the ICANN Board's
attention. In reading Vint Cerf's message, however, I
hope he will modify his observation that "businesses have
no obligation to do business in every country."
I agree with that norm, but in this case the registrar has
*already* chosen to collect money from Macedonian
customers and is cutting them off from managing their
domains. That is not a legitimate business choice, that is
"take the money and run," i.e. theft. Registrars should be
required to transfer legitimately paid for domains to other
registrars if they choose to suspend service to an entire
>>> webmaster at nilebasin.com 10/2/2004 6:38:33 AM >>>
From: owner-gkd at phoenix.edc.org [mailto:owner-gkd at phoenix.edc.org] On
Behalf Of Marta A.Tomovska
Sent: Friday, October 01, 2004 9:42 AM
To: gkd at phoenix.edc.org
Subject: Re: [GKD-DOTCOM] Cyber-Security and E-commerce
Dear GKD Members,
This discussion on cyber-security and e-commerce is a very crucial and
immediate one for us in Macedonia.
I work with Unet, the first ISP in Macedonia, which currently serves
than 15,000 customers with Internet connectivity services, more than
customers with web design, development and maintenance services, and
than 1,000 customers for Domain registration services.
We are registering domains for our customers under the .mk extension
also top level domains under .com, .net, .org, .biz extensions. To
register the top level domains we are using the services of a few
companies' websites like Secureserver.net, Securepaynet.net,
Turbosales.com, Searchhostdirectory.com, Domainlinks.com,
Virtualvision.net, Domains.compuweb.com etc.
We are paying these organizations for domain registration for periods
at least 1 year. For that period of time, we are supposed to have
to our registered domains in order to manage them, renew them, change
their DNS's etc.
In June of this year, when we tried to log into
Cheap-DomainRegistration.com, we have noticed that we cannot access
login page. We sent an e-mail to their support team, but there was no
reply. Then we used our hotmail e-mail account and we received the
> Thank you for writing customer support. We are unable to process
> transactions originating from the following countries: Bulgaria,
> Indonesia, Malaysia, Nigeria, Pakistan, Romania, Vietnam, Ghana,
> Also, the US Government asks that we do not conduct business with
> nations: Cuba, Iran, Iraq, Libya, North Korea, Sudan, Syria
> If your credit card is from one of these countries, or if you reside
> in any of these countries, you will not be able to view or complete
> purchase from our website. I apologize for any inconvenience this
> cause you. We recommend either using a connection that does not use
> local IP address (such as through a internet cafe for example), or
> contact a trusted party outside of your area to log in and approve
> domain name transfers to move your domain to a registrar that you
> Nick P.
> Customer Service
This is not just an isolated case. Please check what yahoo says:
It is evident that Macedonia is blacklisted and anyone with a
IP address is blocked from access to all the above and many more
There are many problems and issues of lack of fairness related to this
situation. One of the problems is that we -- and our customers as well
-- are not receiving the services we and they have paid for.
An additional problem is that there is no chance to re-register
registered domains with another company, so a number of Macedonian
websites will become unavailable on the net very soon!
And of course, the worst and biggest problem is that we have
access to the global network and therefore, are not able to have fast
information exchange with the world, which, if added to the current
situation on the Macedonian Internet market (raised prices for
services from the Incumbent monopoly fixed line provider), will keep us
the dark age.
While doing some investigation on the net covering this problem, I
found one very interesting reading at the following address:
I recommend you to check it!
Perhaps the worst part of this terrible problem is that we are working
tremendously hard here in Macedonia trying to build our country's
We are a small country and our economic future depends on our becoming
part of the global economy. We have apparently been accused of not
enough cyber-security but it is as though the entire country is
and punished for cyber-fraud! I can assure you that if there is any
of cyber-fraud from Macedonia it is far, far smaller than it is in any
developed country. We are accused but there is no way for us to clear
name! The accusation just floats around the world on the Internet and
there is no judge or jury or even global administrative body who we
appeal to and prove our innocence and regain our right to enter into
e-commerce with all the other nations. There is no process or procedure
can take (that we know of) that will let us fight this blacklist and
our name! After everything we have been through in the past decade,
is a terrible blow to us and our hopes for building our economy.
Finally, we have a message for anybody concerned with this problem or
has a good will and belief in our country's potential. Please, please
us by lobbying to the responsible instances or institutions in the
to delete Macedonia from the IP blacklists. Let us know what
you need to help us clear our name and be able to participate like
everyone else in e-commerce. Macedonians are not cyber-pirates!
Member of Macedonian IT cluster
e-mail: marta at unet.com.mk
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