[dns-operations] What happend to UM?

Edward Lewis Ed.Lewis at neustar.biz
Mon Jul 16 12:22:08 UTC 2007

In case this was missed, buried in the middle of the minutes of an 
ICANN board meeting is a resolution on .UM 
(http://www.icann.org/minutes/minutes-17jan07.htm).  By buried I mean 
there is no HTML anchor to give, so I'll cut and paste it here.

Revocation of .UM [United States Minor Outlying Islands]

The Chair asked Kim Davies to provide background information on this item.
Kim advised that in 1997, management of .UM was delegated to the University
  of Southern California's Information Sciences Institute. At that time it
also operated the IANA function, and the registry was run by ISI staff.
However, when ICANN assumed operation of the IANA function, and the .US
registry was spun out of ISI, the .UM registry remained at ISI.

He reported that the .UM registry had no usage, and for much of 2006 was a
"lame delegation" in the root zone. In October 2006, ISI formally
communicated to ICANN that it no longer wished to operate the zone, that
it was empty, and that the delegation should be removed. ICANN's view is
that this would be an appropriate action, and would not prevent a suitably
qualified operator from running .UM in the future if they met all the normal
criteria for delegation of a ccTLD.

The Chair said there might be side effects if people are using software that
tests for the existence of valid country-code domains. He added that as long
as there was widespread notice of the re-delegation, then this should not be
an issue.

Paul Twomey pointed out that this would be the first country-code domain to
be removed from the root that wasn't the result of ISO 3166 changes caused by
a country changing its name or dissolving (such as Zaire and Czechoslovakia).
Kim Davies clarified that this would bring the list of undelegated
country-codes to five, the others being Montenegro (ME), North Korea (KP),
Serbia (RS), and Western Sahara (EH).

Steve Crocker asked whether there were particular difficulties with
reinstituting the name, should it be necessary or desirable. David Conrad
advised that there were no more difficulties with resurrecting this domain
than in other ccTLD delegations.

Paul Twomey pointed out that ICANN already had a consultation process on the
revocation of TLDs, however it was clarified that this is a separate matter
only involving countries that no longer existed. In this case, UM is still
recognized as an official code by the ISO 3166-1 standard.

Following this discussion Susan Crawford moved and Rita Rodin seconded a
request for a vote on the following resolution:

    Whereas, the .UM top-level domain was originally delegated in December
    1997 <http://www.iana.org/root-whois/um.htm>.

    Whereas, the currently assigned operator is the University of Southern
    California's Information Sciences Institute.

    Whereas, the .UM domain is not in active use, and the current operator
    no longer wishes to operate it.

    Whereas, ICANN has reviewed the request, and has determined that the
    returning the domain to unassigned status is the appropriate action to
    reflect its status.

    Recognizing, this would not prohibit future delegation of the domain to
    another party that meets the regular ccTLD delegation criteria.

    Resolved (07.04), that the delegation of .UM be removed from the DNS
    root, and that it be returned to unassigned status.

The Board approved the resolution by roll call vote 12-0. In addition 
to the Board Members not present for the call, Steve Goldstein was 
not available to vote.

Edward Lewis                                                +1-571-434-5468

Think glocally.  Act confused.

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