On November 28, 2005, CFIT filed an anti-trust action against VeriSign, Inc. and ICANN in the United States District Court Northern District of California San Jose Division. To see a copy of the complaint as filed, click here.
A request made of U.S. District Court for the Nothern District of California by CFIT on November 28, 2005 when it filed papers seeking a restraining order preventing the contract from being signed in the interim has been transformed by the court into a petition for preliminary injunction. A hearing date of February 10, 2006 has been set. To see a copy of the order, click here.
In those papers, ICANN confirmed that the settlement agreement would not be put to a vote during the ICANN Vancouver conference (though the Board might decide at its December 4 meeting to determine the timing of such a vote) and that no futher Board meetings were scheduled for this year. On the basis of ICANN’s representations, the imminent threat of signing the new deal appears to have been removed, allowing the judge to convert CFIT’s call into application for a preliminary injunction.
Here are the documents that were filed during the proceedings seeking to stop the signing of the settlement agreement in the short term:
Application for the Temporary Restraining Order
Memorandum in Support of the Temporary Restraining Order
Declaration of Michael Geist
Declaration of Keith Butler
Declaration of Richard Chambers
Declaration of Tony Farrow
Declaration of Taryn Naidu
ICANN Brief in Response to TRO
VeriSign Brief in Response to TRO
Declaration of Jesse Markham, Jr.
CFIT Reply Brief
On November 29, CFIT formally asked the European Commission to begin an investigation into anti-competitive behavior of VeriSign and ICANN. The focus of that investigation will be the pending .com proposal and the already signed .net registry agreement. The letter to European Commissioner Cecilio Madero Villarejo, who heads the Information Industries, Internet and Consumer Electronics unit, makes this key point:
“There is no doubt that the European Commission is the competition authority in Europe best placed to investigate this anti-competitive behaviour. Internet-related services are of concern to all European businesses and consumers, and any attempt to monopolize Internet-related services knows no national borders.”