The Internet Society (ISOCNZ) will hire an interim chief executive to manage Domainz, its .nz domain name company, until a working party report into the structure of the registry operation in New Zealand is completed. “We want to be able to select a chief executive who is appropriate to the new focus rather than getting somebody in now and then changing it all underneath them,” says Domainz chairman Robert Gray. The current head, Patrick O’Brien, has resigned, effective from the end of September, although he will “be available until the end of the year to answer questions and that sort of thing”. A confidentiality agreement hides the details about O’Brien’s contract, and Gray would not comment on whether O’Brien will be paid the remaining three months of his contract. “We reached a mutual agreement.” The working group headed by John Hine, professor of computer science at Victoria University, is reviewing the structure of the registry in New Zealand. Domainz has sole control of the register of domain names, but the ISOCNZ annual general meeting saw a change in policy direction for the society towards a freeing up of control. The draft report calls for Domainz to become a “thin registry”, only looking after the register of domain names and having little or nothing to do with the end user. That commercial relationship would be handled by registrars, usually ISPs, although anyone can become a registrar. The registrar would be the only commercial contact with the end user; currently Domainz bills some end users directly for services which some of the ISPs claim they are offering. A copy of the draft report is available at: http://www.isocnz.org.nz/consult/ “A lot of the criticism of the new system was on the lack of consultation so we’re being careful not to make the same mistake again.” The new system cost has blown out to around $700,000 and has been the target of animosity from a number of ISPs.
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