[CCWG-ACCT] Who is managing the lawyers and what have they beenasked to do?

Greg Shatan gregshatanipc at gmail.com
Sat Jul 4 06:41:09 UTC 2015


To your first point, the billing rates were clearly stated in the law
firms' engagement letters.

To your second point, I'm sure we could all think of other projects and
goals where the money could have been "better spent."  You've stated
yours.  But that is not the proper test.  This was and continues to be
money we need to spend to achieve the goals we have set.  Under different
circumstances, perhaps it would be a different amount (or maybe none at
all).  But it was strongly felt at the outset that the group needed to have
independent counsel.  Clearly that counsel needed to have recognized
expertise in the appropriate legal areas.  As such, I believe we made
excellent choices and have been very well represented.

As to your "better spent" test, I just had to have $4000.00 worth of
emergency dental work done.  This money definitely could have been "better
spent" on a nice vacation, redecorating our living room or on donations to
my favored charitable causes.  But I had no choice, other than to choose
which dentist and endodontist I went to, and I wasn't going to cut corners
-- the dental work was a necessity.  Similarly, the legal work we are
getting is a necessity and whether we would have preferred to spend the
money elsewhere is not merely irrelevant, it is an incorrect and
inappropriate proposition.  Many of us are investing vast quantities of
time that could be "better spent" elsewhere as well, but we are willing
(grudgingly sometimes) to spend the time it takes to get it right, because
we believe it needs to be done.  This is the appropriate measure, whether
it comes to our time or counsels' time.  If we believe in this project, we
have to invest in it, and do what it takes to succeed.

Of course, this investment has to be managed wisely and cost-effectively,
and by and large, I believe the CCWG has done that reasonably well -- not
perfectly, but reasonably well and with "course corrections" along the way
intended to improve that management.  It's certainly fair to ask, as Robin
has done, for a better understanding of that management as we go along.
But asserting that the money could have been "better spent" elsewhere sets
up a false test that we should not use to evaluate this important aspect of
our work.  Instead, we need to focus on whether the money was "well spent"
on these critical legal services. If you have reason to believe it was not,
that could be useful to know.  That would at least be the right discussion
to have.


On Sat, Jul 4, 2015 at 1:13 AM, "Kleinwächter, Wolfgang" <
wolfgang.kleinwaechter at medienkomm.uni-halle.de> wrote:

> HI,
> and please if you ask outside lawyers, ask for the price tag in advance.
> Some of the money spend fo lawyers could have been spend better to suppport
> and enable Internet user and non-commercial groups in developing countries.
> Wolfgang
> -----Ursprüngliche Nachricht-----
> Von: accountability-cross-community-bounces at icann.org im Auftrag von
> Robin Gross
> Gesendet: Fr 03.07.2015 14:57
> An: accountability-cross-community at icann.org Community
> Betreff: [CCWG-ACCT] Who is managing the lawyers and what have they
> beenasked to do?
> After the legal sub-team was disbanded, I haven't been able to follow what
> communications are happening with CCWG and the independent lawyers we
> retained.
> I understand the lawyers are currently "working on the various models" and
> will present something to us regarding that work soon.  However, *what
> exactly* have the lawyers been asked to do and *who* asked them?   If there
> are written instructions, may the group please see them?  Who is now taking
> on the role of managing the outside attorneys for this group, including
> providing instructions and certifying legal work?
> Sorry, but I'm really trying to understand what is happening, and there
> doesn't seem to be much information in the public on this (or if there is,
> I can't find it).  Thanks for any information anyone can provide.
> Best,
> Robin
> _______________________________________________
> Accountability-Cross-Community mailing list
> Accountability-Cross-Community at icann.org
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