[CCWG-ACCT] Fwd: [CCWG-Advisors] jan comments on 17 april ccwg materials

Jordan Carter jordan at internetnz.net.nz
Tue Apr 21 10:02:38 UTC 2015

Thanks Jan for this thoughtful and thought-provoking piece.

I especially liked this because it draws attention to a weakness in our
mode of operation. our CCWG is appointed by ICANN stakeholder groups, along
with open participation from the community. But those who will have to come
to consensus on its outcomes are all (by construction of the group) ICANN
insiders, and it is ICANN SOs and ACs that will have to approve the output.

In that context it is tricky to see how we can in particular assure both
ourselves and the broader Internet community that we are dealing adequately
with #5 in Jan's list. I certainly have not had the chance to analyse our
proposals with this in mind.

Seems to me these are questions we will have to come to grips with as we
get community comment, and could help guide us to some questions to ask the
community (as I am sure we will get responses from well beyond the
"insiders"). Our final proposal when it does emerge in September or October
will certainly need to deal with this.


On 20 April 2015 at 22:01, Mathieu Weill <mathieu.weill at afnic.fr> wrote:

>  Dear Colleagues,
> Please find below a contribution on our draft public comment report by Jan
> Aart Scholte, in his capacity as one of our Advisors.
> Best regards,
> Mathieu
> -------- Message transféré --------  Sujet : [CCWG-Advisors] jan comments
> on 17 april ccwg materials  Date : Mon, 20 Apr 2015 07:19:58 +0000  De : Jan
> Aart Scholte <jan.scholte at globalstudies.gu.se>
> <jan.scholte at globalstudies.gu.se>  Pour : CCWG-Advisors
> <ccwg-advisors at icann.org> <ccwg-advisors at icann.org>,
> jordan at internetnz.net.nz <jordan at internetnz.net.nz>
> <jordan at internetnz.net.nz>
>  Hello All
> Great to see that CCWG continues to make impressive headway after the
> productive Istanbul meeting. Many thanks, Adam, for your thorough briefing
> accompanying the documents circulated on Friday. My read of the materials
> prompts the following thoughts, mainly concerning the community empowerment
> mechanism:
> (1) The community empowerment mechanism increasingly looks to be based on
> SOs and ACs. A key question of course remains with what distribution of
> seats, and also whether any other body such as GAC or SSAC would have a
> voting representation.
> (2) Would any adjustments in the AC and SO constructions be advisable at
> this juncture, concurrent with the IANA transition, in order that 'the
> Community' as institutionalised in the empowerment mechanism aligns
> sufficiently closely with the present actual constellation of ICANN
> stakeholders in the world at large?
> (3) How (and how readily) could the the formula which constitutes 'the
> Community' in the empowerment mechanism be adjusted in future, as and when
> the prevailing arrangement is found inadequately to reflect the
> constellation of ICANN stakeholders at that future time? Consider how
> difficult it has been to adjust membership of the UN Security Council and
> the Boards of the Bretton Woods institutions, which remain largely frozen
> in the world of 1945. The world of 2045 is likely to be quite different
> from that of 2015 - will ICANN's constitution allow it readily to change
> with the times?
> (4) Related to (3), could overly high supermajorities have unwanted
> consequences of excessive constitutional conservatism? To be sure, too low
> a threshold could invite constitutional instability, but too high a
> threshold could invite institutional ossification. For example,
> constitutional reform of the International Monetary Fund has been so
> difficult in good part because an 85% vote is needed to alter the Articles
> of Agreement, which has effectively entrenched a US Government veto.
> (5) Then there is that ever-present thorn of the accountability of those
> who hold ICANN to account. How will participants in the empowerment
> mechanism be held accountable to wider stakeholder circles, both within
> ICANN (i.e. the ACs and SOs) *and beyond*? Legislators in democratic
> nation-states are subject to election by the general population, but
> delegates in the ICANN 'parliament' would only be elected by ACs and SOs,
> whose connections to wider constituencies - and that so-called 'global
> public interest' - can be quite thin? How does one ensure that the
> community empowerment mechanism does not become a vehicle for capture of
> ICANN by insider activists?
> Happy for this note to be made available to all CCWG if thought suitable.
> Not sure about the protocols of advisors' communications.
> Greetings
> Jan
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Jordan Carter

Chief Executive

04 495 2118 (office) | +64 21 442 649 (mob)
jordan at internetnz.net.nz
Skype: jordancarter

*A better world through a better Internet *
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