pgMedia Files Motion For A Preliminary Injunction

press release from 05-14-98

NEW YORK - On May 14, 1998, pgMedia, Inc. d/b/a/ Name.Space(sm), a New York-based registrar of Internet domain names, filed a preliminary injunction motion with the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York, requesting that the Court prohibit Network Solutions, Inc. ("NSI") from continuing to deny pgMedia access to the Internet's "root zone file."

This motion is the latest step in pgMedia's ongoing litigation with NSI over access to the root file, which by managing the part of Internet addresses known as top level domain names ("TLDs"), functions as the main "traffic cop" directing Internet communications and allowing Internet users to communicate with all other Internet users. pgMedia seeks to make available to the Internet community a variety of new and creative TLDs other than NSI's generic TLDs, i.e. .com, .org and .net. However, to provide consumers with choices, pgMedia and other competitors need the ability to place their TLDs in the root zone file. So far, NSI, which has exercised monopoly control over the root zone file as a result of a government contract, has refused to do so, even though no agency of the U.S. has been authorized by Congress to restrict the number of Internet TLDs, and even though the addition of virtually unlimited TLDs is technically feasible and would not harm the functioning of the Internet.

In its motion, pgMedia invoked a well-developed and long-standing antitrust principle known as the "essential facilities" doctrine, prohibiting a monopolist that controls a vital means to competition from denying reasonable, nondiscriminatory access to competitors. It is the same principle that the government used in 1984 to require AT&T to allow other telephone companies to access AT&T's lines, eventually providing consumers with choices in long-distance service.

"This is a classic 'essential facilities" antitrust case." said Glenn Manishin, litigation counsel for pgMedia. "There can only be one 'root" for the Internet, or else the very essence of the seamless interconnectivity of the Net is destroyed. We believe that if the Court applies these settled precedents, it must rule in favor of pgMedia and order that the Internet be opened to an unlimited number of new and innovative TLDs. NSI is the only game in town, so the law says that they cannot refuse to deal with competitors like pgMedia."

Addressing the Clinton Administration's ongoing policy review of domain name issues, pgMedia argued in its motion that the U.S. lacks authority under International law to restrict the number of TLDs.

If pgMedia prevails on its motion, the ability of users to communicate and advertise through Internet addresses will improve significantly. Both US and global consumers, for the first time, will be free to register a variety of new TLDs without being cut-off from the rest of the Internet. For instance, all Internet users will be able to communicate with pgMedia's customers who currently employ such practical TLDs, as .sports, .law or .computers and use of communicative TLDs, like for.president and beyond.hope.

"Open competition is critical to the growth, creativity and success of the Internet," said Paul Garrin, President of pgMedia. "We expect a favorable decision in this case, which will be at the forefront of many court decisions showing that antitrust principles are still alive and well in the technology era."

For more information, please contact Glenn Manishin at
(202) 955-6300
or Henry Perritt, Jr. at (312) 906-5010 or

Name.Space website can be reached at http://TIME-TO.MOVE-OVER.COM

Preliminary Injunction Document is at http://Name.Space-Slams.Com
(this address should work whenever as NSI updates it database)