Name.Space.Info on Thu, 1 Apr 1999 21:38:46 +0200 (CEST)

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<nettime> Name.Space Files Appeal in NSI Antitrust Case

New York
March 31, 1999
For Immediate Release:


The pioneer Internet Domain Name Registry Name.Space filed an appeal today
at the US Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit in an ongoing antitrust
battle against Network Solutions, Inc. (NSI), the publicly traded Virginia
company who was recently granted antitrust immunity by a lower court, and
the National Science Foundation (NSF).

Name.Space filed the antitrust suit on March 20, 1997 after NSI refused
the company's request to add new toplevel domains to the root directory of
the Internet, which NSI controls under a contract with the US Government.  
On March 19, 1999, two years after the suit was filed, district court
Judge Robert P. Patterson ruled in favor of NSI and the NSF, granting NSI
immunity from antitrust laws, recognizing NSI's contract with the NSF, and
later the NTIA, as protection from prosecution. The Court's opinion also
dismissed Name.Space's First Amendment claims stating that domain names
are like telephone numbers and are not free speech.

Name.Space Founder and CEO, Paul Garrin, comments that "the Court's
decision was a political decision and not a legal one.  I believe that the
Judge did not fully understand this case or the Internet, as he admitted,
and would not make a decision on the present legal issues, so he simply
rubberstampped the Defandants' briefs.  I am glad to take the case on to a
higher court where I hope it will be more seriously reviewed."

Name.Space offers new and innovative domain services and new top level
domain names (TLDs) such as "art." "cam." "law." "media." and "sex." and
hundreds of others which they believe are a needed change to the legacy
"com." "org." and "net." domains that have become over-crowded and limit
market choice and free expression.  Since the beginning of its operations
in 1996, Name.Space has processed thousands of requests for new top level
domains and believes that the demand will grow as more users connect to
the Internet.

Name.Space believes that NSI is unfairly using its monopoly position to
control the market while hiding behind its government contract. The
artificial scarcity imposed by limiting consumer choice to "com." "org."
and "net." has allowed NSI to realize substantial monopoly profits and a
huge market capitalization while eliminating competition from firms as
such as Name.Space.

Since 1996 Name.Space was the first to have a fully functional real time
domain registry specializing in new toplevel domains and later adapted to
resell the legacy domains.  Name.Space is a leader in developing new
services to enhance the domain name system, and bring a wider range of
services at a lower cost to the consumer.

Glenn Manishin, lead counsel for Name.Space said that "the district
court's decision extends antitrust immunity never contemplated by Congress
and would provide blanket protections against any claim for all government
contractors.  The court's cavallier treatment of the serious First
Amendment issues arising from TLDs and internet domain names will merit
more rigorous analysis on appeal." Name.Space is confident that it will
prevail in the appeal on legal grounds, and intends to pursue its claim
for treble damages under the antitrust laws.



Glenn Manishin:   202.955.6300
Stephanie Joyce:  202.955.6300

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