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Re: [openny] Help write Open NY Forum's history…

From: Tom L.
Sent on: Thursday, September 6, 2012 5:04 PM

There was a conversation on the New York Internet Society list today about an upcoming conference that invited as follows:
Join Crain's New York Business and Partnership for New York City for the FUTURE OF NEW YORK CITY CONFERENCE to take part in a discussion about the agenda for the next mayor.
A board member chimed in that they should consider a note about the role of the .nyc TLD. I of course on in noting that the opening speech was about the Competitive Advantage of New York and that .nyc certainly was an appropriate topic. Another board member said "what's the competitive advantage of .nyc" to which I put together the below.

It's perhaps not on point with Open-NY, but might be worth considering.

I will be there this evening but not arrive until 8 or so. Save me a cold one.




Good point Joly. And with the understanding that this is a new development with little experience to build upon, allow me to ramble on a bit about the Competitive Advantage that we might achieve through a thoughtfully developed .nyc TLD.

1. Imagine .Milano institutes a detailed Internet of Things protocol, giving a domain name to everything that doesn't move in the city. This presents efficiencies for city operation and for those who want to use these place-based objects in new media developments - apps and the like (e.g., drag in And New York didn't have this because it rushed, unthinking, into the issuance of .nyc domain names.

2. Imagine .Paris assigned domain names to every street in the city and assigned the respective domain names to entities that would develop various layers for these properties under contract. So for example, when someone enters Champs-Elysees they are presented with a page that facilitates access.

3. Imagine .Paris creates a structure that optimizes the domain name. And that New York City sells via an auction to Macy's.

4. Imagine that 20 years down the road we've run out of good domain names - those that are short, descriptive, and memorable - with the elderly squatting on these, paying a minimal annual renewal fee for their names. And .Amsterdam has high renewal fees which are dedicated to facilitating Net education and toward encouraging a sustainable TLD. 

5. Imagine visiting .Istanbul and entering english.Istambul and finding everything you need.

6. Imagine as a collaborative resource that provides residents and visitors with accurate and timely information about our city

7. Imagine neighborhood domain names that serve the residents of their respective neighborhoods, so that addresses the civic and family needs of that neighborhood's 55,000 residents rather than those of the global beer conglomerate.

8. Imagine as as place where money doesn't matter. Where candidates for public office present their case for office and the Netizens vote them up or down.

9. Imagine a regional city unencumbered by a plethora of governance structures - there are 800 in the 90 mile radius of the Empire State Building - simplifying and reducing the cost of government. And a place where where institutional barriers to business are diminished.

10. Finally, the .nyc TLD will prove itself when dog owners get their along with their dog license. Then New York City will have made obsolescent the adage “No one knows you’re a dog on the Internet.”  ;)

So Joly, if we're talking about "competitive advantage" here's an hour's worth of reasons why the conference should think about the .nyc TLD. Two qualifiers: I've not provided the negatives on most of the above but will gladly do so those that require it. Also, one can easily see non-TLD ways to provide most of these resources. But here's what one can do at a modest cost with a virgin TLD.

It's clearly a "Use it or loose it" situation.


Tom Lowenhaupt

P.S. We worked on a somewhat related document called the Paris Understanding in 2008. "Competitive Advantage" concerns from various cities hindered its progress over the past several years. I intend to renew the effort at ICANN 45 in Toronto next month.

On 9/6/2012 2:10 PM, noel hidalgo wrote:
Good afternoon everyone,

It is hard to image that we are approaching our fourth year of organising for a more Open New York! Over the past few months, there have been quite a few conversations about the future. How do we sustain our work? How do we make a lasting impact on future NYC Governments? How do we broaden the umbrella of open advocates while helping stimulate economic development and enshrining Open Data as a civil right? 

Answering these questions are not easy… But help is on its way!

To give our group a solid foundation, the organizers have started to write the "history of Open NY." While mostly grounded in events, we would love input and feedback. Feel free to click on this link < > or email me your comments to the document below…


Mission Statement:

The OpenNY Forum provides a space in which members of New York's many civic-minded communities and institutions can work together to build a better a more open city and state. We focus on the intersection of open government and civic technology. Our group is non-partisan in its approach, focused instead on common goals and improving our shared systems and infrastructure.


Originally organized as “Open Government NYC Meetup”, this community started meeting in March of 2009.

Meetup group created: September 15, 2008
First meeting: March
Founder: Matt Cooperrider
Current Organizers: Noel Hidalgo & Philip Ashlock (Circa Fall/Winter 2009)
Reported Members: 500 +
Meetup URL (Primary site):
Google Group (direct, defunct):
Google Group (related, quiet):
Related Meetups:

Timeline of events:


- March, Matt Cooperrider starts meetup group and runs first event called "Mapping the Territory” - and 35 people attend, with local media coverage:
- Participation Camp, in the lead up to Personal Democracy Forum's annual conference, Open NY hosted a two day unconference focused on new ideas and tools to support citizen participation in Government. < > and < >
- Community testimony to Coucilmember Brewer's committee on a proposed Open Data Law.
- Organised three BigApps Dev Camp to seed the's call for datasets and idealised apps.
-- BigApps Dev Camp #1 -
-- BigApps Dev Camp #2 -
-- BigApps Dev Camp #3 -
- Demanded that BigApps campaign/challenge become more transparent < >.
- CapitolCamp: Collaborated with the New York State Senate and New York State Chief Information Officer / Office of Technology to produce CapitalCamp, the first unconference inside a State Capitol building. < >
- Open NY Summit & Codeathon, a continuation of Participation Camp where attendants briefed on the status of projects and tools. YouTube Playlist for this event: (7 vids, including Matt’s summary of OpenNY past and present)


- Coordinated with Personal Democracy Forum's evening salon.
- Provided testimony to NY City Council on Open Data (June 16)
-- Video testimony
-- Committee Blog
-- NY Senate CIO, Andrew Hoppin,
-- See Click Fix
-- Digital Democracy
- Lobbied the organizers of NYC’s BigApps campaign to host public information sessions around datasets and goals of the competition. < >
- Organized a panel sesion for Re:Group, beyond models of consensus < >. This was a series of conversations, workshops, and installations at Eyebeam focusing on authorised and unauthorised "crowd sourcing".


- Partnered with New Work City, an NYC coworking office space, to be part of New Work University. New Work City University < > was a series of monthly classes and workshops focusing on cutting edge conversations affecting the NYC technology / start up community.
- Introduced NYC's Chief Digital Officer to the technology community.
- Hosted OpenGov Camp, an unconference about tools for change. < >
- In Spring, spearheaded the creation of the Transparency Work Group linking together NYC's civil liberty organisations and policy technologists to advocate for the passing of's open data legislation.
- At, a municipal hackathon to reimaging, members of the Open NY community won the best interface award
- Through Spring and into winter, Open NY’s organizing efforts are invested in working and negotiation with NYC’s Department of Information Technology and Telecommunications (DoITT) and NY City Council to bring about the right legal language we want to see in the City’s Open Data Law.


- Focused efforts on private conversations with City Councilmembers and NYC’s DoITT to further developments on (then Intro-29a) Local Law 11 and open data efforts in NYC.
- Local Law 11 is passed. This law is heralded as the most progressive municipal open data law. < > and < >
- NYC Open Data Policy Hack Day < >, members of the community preorganized responces and atteneded with a list of suggestions that were incorperated into the OpenData Standards < >.
- Members of the Open NY community organize PDF Applied < >, bringing leading civic “hackers” together with practitioners in government and NGOs to build tools that enhance civic life through technology-driven innovation.


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