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The underlying legal basis for ICANN was also the subject of a newly
released law review article by Prof. Michael Froomkin of the University
Miami School of Law. The lengthy article is available at
http://www.law.miami.edu/~froomkin/articles/icann.pdf. Prof. Froomkin is
highly critical of the relationship between ICANN and the U.S.
Department of
Commerce. He states: "ICANN is formally a private nonprofit California
corporation, created in response to a summoning by U.S. Government
officials, to take regulatory actions that the Department of Commerce
unable or unwilling to take directly. If the U.S. government is
its policy making through ICANN, it violates the [U.S. Administrative
Procedure Act]; if ICANN is, in fact, independent , then the federal
government's decisions to have ICANN manage a public resource of such
importance, and to allow indeed, require -- it to enforce regulatory
conditions on users of that resource, violate the non-delegation
doctrine of
the U.S. Constitution." It remains to be seen whether a U.S. court will
adopt Prof. Froomkin's view of ICANN's legal status.

Howard Flack        http://www.unige.ch/crystal/ahdf/Howard.Flack.html
Laboratoire de Cristallographie               Phone: 41 (22) 702 62 49
24 quai Ernest-Ansermet             mailto:Howard.Flack@cryst.unige.ch
CH-1211 Geneva 4, Switzerland                   Fax: 41 (22) 702 61 08

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