[CCWG-ACCT] way forward and minority statements

Steve DelBianco sdelbianco at netchoice.org
Thu Jul 30 15:59:01 UTC 2015

The compromise text says "fundamental human rights of the exercise of free expression and the free flow of information”.

But I do not find “free flow if information” on the UN list of fundamental human rights.   Where is that right stated as fundamental?

From: <accountability-cross-community-bounces at icann.org<mailto:accountability-cross-community-bounces at icann.org>> on behalf of Greg Shatan
Date: Thursday, July 30, 2015 at 11:47 AM
To: Stephanie Perrin
Cc: "accountability-cross-community at icann.org<mailto:accountability-cross-community at icann.org>"
Subject: Re: [CCWG-ACCT] way forward and minority statements

Nobody has to publish their confidential information to the world in order to register a domain name.  Privacy/proxy services are readily available and there is no formal proposal to take that away from anyone.  I agree we can and should take this debate elsewhere, since it is a nuanced one, and there has been much misinformation spread on the topic.

However, if adding the proposed language to the Bylaws changes how ICANN should "determine where the human rights obligations fall" in the policy-making process relating to this issue, then this is a very significant change.


On Thu, Jul 30, 2015 at 11:31 AM, Stephanie Perrin <stephanie.perrin at mail.utoronto.ca<mailto:stephanie.perrin at mail.utoronto.ca>> wrote:
No actually I am referring to scammers, spammers, doxxers, and really irritating (but not criminal) commercial elements who mine the WHOIS database to pursue innocent folks who have to publish their confidential information to the world in order to register a domain name.
A public directory is not the way to control lawbreakers who hide behind proxy services, as has been amply debated in the recent PPSAI public comments period.
Anyway lets take this debate elsewhere as it does not contribute much to the topic.  Except, I would point out, that the risk balance between the harm done by public disclosure through WHOIS has changed in the 17 years that the Internet has been growing up, and it is time to revisit who is at risk, and determine where the human rights obligations fall.  As you can tell, I believe privacy and the people who need it are more at risk today than law enforcement operations (who can find the registrars and the ISPs, and request the data they need there, in addition to more relevant info such as payment details). Disclosure of address and phone numbers is permanent and irrevocable thanks to value added services that have grown up to mine the WHOIS data.
kind regards,

On 2015-07-30 11:18, Greg Shatan wrote:

Are you referring to the criminal element who knows how to use WHOIS to hide themselves?  That is certainly a huge problem and not limited to violations of criminal law -- it is also a huge problem with regard to lawbreakers whose actions are not criminal in nature.


On Thu, Jul 30, 2015 at 11:05 AM, Stephanie Perrin <stephanie.perrin at mail.utoronto.ca<mailto:stephanie.perrin at mail.utoronto.ca>> wrote:
Totally agree Nigel, but providing access to law enforcement is not the same as publishing to the world, and the criminal element who know how to use WHOIS.  At the moment, options for nuanced disclosure are limited.

On 2015-07-30 11:00, Nigel Roberts wrote:

The whole debate about the right to private and family life is more nuanced.

Without turning this list into a discussion on how respect for human rights is guaranteed on this contintent, it's worth pointing out that respecting the right of privacy does NOT mean closing off domain registration data to law enforcment. Quite the opposite.

The privacy right is a qualified right -- so it CAN be interfered with

- lawfully, when necessary in a democratic society; so long as it is
- proportionate.

And I don't think that conflicts with anybody's 'marching orders'.

On 30/07/15 15:53, Stephanie Perrin wrote:
I hate to complicate this discussion, but I feel duty bound to point out
that the first human right many people think of these days with respect
to the domain name registration system is privacy.  Freedom of
expression and the openness of the Internet rolls more easily off the
tongue....but if anyone says what about privacy, the WHOIS would have to
be re-examined.  This of course conflicts with the marching orders that
the NTIA has had for ICANN since its inception.
Stephanie Perrin

On 2015-07-30 5:59, Erika Mann wrote:
In addition to Avri's points, such a provision could help as well to
ensure that future business models that relate to more sensitive
strings (.gay for example) will continue to be treated as any other


On Thu, Jul 30, 2015 at 11:42 AM, Avri Doria <avri at acm.org<mailto:avri at acm.org>
<mailto:avri at acm.org<mailto:avri at acm.org>>> wrote:


    Off the top of my head, I think a first thing we would have to do
    be to start understanding the impact, if any, of ICANN operations and
    policies on human rights.  Some of this work is already starting
    in the
    human rights working party (HRWP), though that is a rather informal
    beginning.  I would also think that some part of the staff would
    need to
    start taking these issues into consideration.  I do not think that it
    would cause any serious changes in the near future but would make us
    more aware as time went on, and would give us a basis for discussion
    both in the HRWP and in the ACSO and Board.

    In terms of the specific things it might limt us from, and this would
    require some analysis on specifc events, might be creating any
    kinds of
    policies or operations that forced  limitation of content, beyond the
    limitations required by law for incitement, on domain named sites.  It
    would in fact strengthen our postion in that respect.

    Most important though, it would cover a hole left by the loss of the
    NTIA backstop, on any issue concerning freedom of expression, free
    of information or openness of the Internet.


    > On Jul 30, 2015, at 11:01 AM, Chris Disspain <ceo at auda.org.au<mailto:ceo at auda.org.au>
    <mailto:ceo at auda.org.au<mailto:ceo at auda.org.au>>
    > <mailto:ceo at auda.org.au<mailto:ceo at auda.org.au> <mailto:ceo at auda.org.au<mailto:ceo at auda.org.au>>>> wrote:
    >> Keith,
    >> This looks interesting. Could we think of an example of something
    >> concrete ICANN would have to do if it made this commitment? Or
    >> something it would not be able to do?
    >> Cheers,
    >> Chris
    >>> On 30 Jul 2015, at 18:16 , Drazek, Keith <kdrazek at verisign.com<mailto:kdrazek at verisign.com>
    <mailto:kdrazek at verisign.com<mailto:kdrazek at verisign.com>>
    >>> <mailto:kdrazek at verisign.com<mailto:kdrazek at verisign.com> <mailto:kdrazek at verisign.com<mailto:kdrazek at verisign.com>>>> wrote:
    >>> Hi Avri,
    >>> In order to tie your suggestion directly to the language in
    >>> Secretary Strickling's April 2014 written congressional testimony
    >>> (included in a prior email) and to reduce concerns about scope
    >>> creep, would language along these lines be acceptable to you?
    >>>> "Within its mission and in its operations, ICANN will be
    >>>> to respect the fundamental human rights of the exercise of free
    >>>> expression and the free flow of information."
    >>> Speaking personally, I could probably support this formulation. To
    >>> be clear, I have not discussed this with the RySG, but it's
    >>> consistent with the requirements outlined by NTIA so I think it's
    >>> certainly worth considering.
    >>> I'm not advocating including this in the Bylaws, but I'm not
    >>> objecting to it either. However, if we don't reach consensus for
    >>> adding to the Bylaws, I definitely think this is worth further
    >>> consideration in WS2 and would support an explicit reference using
    >>> this or similar language and timetable for doing so.
    >>> Regards,
    >>> Keith

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