[CCWG-ACCT] A modest proposal to start the week
gregshatanipc at gmail.com
Mon Jun 1 15:18:49 UTC 2015
I agree in large part with Jonathan's remarks, though I do believe that
concrete and focused discussions of (f)actual issues that arose can be of
some value. Data can be useful; it's the vague and ominous remarks and
hardening into "camps" that tends to be counterproductive. It is possible
to have discussions about root causes of trust issues, and about clarifying
why the Board does what it does and why those things are seen as right by
the board even if not popular, as long as the goal is mutual understanding
and refining the work of the group. Otherwise, this is just one of several
thematic "rat holes" that we tend to go down from time to time.
Just to respond briefly to Avri:
First, I don't see the main purpose of membership as "having a better
chance in court." A membership organization is fundamentally different
from a non-membership organization in terms of accountability and power
structure. In a member organization, the Board owes a fiduciary duty to
the corporation *and to the members*. The members essentially sit *above* the
Board in the corporate hierarchy. This is the basis of the rights (a/k/a
"mechanisms"), as well as the ability to enforce those rights, as well as
the tools (including but not limited to litigation) to implement
enforcement if need be.
Second, it is interesting to see the observation that "Membership moves
the problem from accountabity of one ICANN to the accountabilty of the many
UA. We move the problem of accountability to a space which is historically
not very transparent in its bottom-up mechanisms." and "We have close to no
experience in insuring that constituencies, stakeholder groups, RALOs, ACs
or SOs are accountable to their members." I read this as a mistrust of or
concern regarding the stakeholders, or really the existing stakeholder
groups that claim to represent stakeholders. Maybe I'm interpreting this
wrong, as it comes from someone who I see as a champion of the
multistakeholder model and voice in ICANN. I agree that we have not (in
this group) explored the accountability of stakeholder entities to their
members, or the accountability of stakeholder entities (singly and
collectively) to the larger community, or for that matter, the
accountability of stakeholder entities to their non-member (and
If this is truly a deep concern, then it could be seen as a fundamental
flaw in our entire plan, which is based on the existing stakeholder
entities -- no matter how you design it (members, designators, delegates,
etc.). I am not going to say that there is perfect accountability (and
transparency) flowing from stakeholder entity leadership to members, or
from active members to all members, or from entities to non-member
stakeholders, or from entities to the larger stakeholder community, etc.
In fact, I think there is real work to be done to improve stakeholder
entity accountability -- maybe even work for the CCWG in Workstream 2.
However, I don't think that it is so fundamental an issue that stakeholders
as represented by the existing stakeholder entities should not be empowered
with oversight and enforcement powers to hold ICANN accountable. In other
words, I have sufficient (but not blind) trust in our multistakeholder
community to take on the roles envisaged in our draft proposal.
On Mon, Jun 1, 2015 at 10:24 AM, Avri Doria <avri at acm.org> wrote:
> On 01-Jun-15 06:24, Edward Morris wrote:
> > We all have different background and pet peeves. Jonathan's appears to
> > be in the area of Board - Community history / mistrust. Some of these
> > discussions have actually hardened my belief that we need the strong
> > enforcement provisions provided by membership: if feelings are this
> > strong less concrete enforcement mechanisms simply won't work. In that
> > way these discussions have been valuable to me. My pet peeve are the
> > many posts by those who don't understand basic legal principles,
> > concepts or definitions, resulting in questions that are innane and
> > conclusions that are inaccurate and harmful to our progress. Yet I
> > would never ask people not to post such ill conceived ideas because
> > every so often in the midst of the their garbage there is a gem I
> > hadn't considered. That is truly valuable.
> Do you mean like my strong belief that having a better chance in court
> when suing (something we have not done but could have) is _not_ a valid
> reason for creating all of the organizational upheaval required for
> Or my belief that by creating these membership organizations we do not
> solve the accountability problem but compartmentalize it, so that we
> need to insure the accountabilty of all of the independent UAs instead
> of ICANN as an overall entity. Membership moves the problem from
> accountabity of one ICANN to the accountabilty of the many UA. We move
> the problem of accountability to a space which is historically not very
> transparent in its bottom-up mechanisms.
> I think we have seen that the community can already mobilize to affect
> the Board when needed (apologies for resorting to history). Adding
> mechanisms like Board member removal, improved RR and IRP, can only make
> that better. We have close to no experience in insuring that
> constituencies, stakeholder groups, RALOs, ACs or SOs are accountable to
> their members (again apologies for resorting to history).
> Happy to still be able to proffer potential garbage on this list.
> This email has been checked for viruses by Avast antivirus software.
> Accountability-Cross-Community mailing list
> Accountability-Cross-Community at icann.org
-------------- next part --------------
An HTML attachment was scrubbed...
More information about the Accountability-Cross-Community