[atrt2] Draft Report - version 1 for review

Olivier MJ Crepin-Leblond ocl at gih.com
Thu Oct 10 10:41:30 UTC 2013

Hello all,

I've read this thread with interest although I think it might have
slipped on a tangent.
Referring to an older message in the thread:

On 09/10/2013 21:15, Avri Doria wrote:
> In general, I thought that all SO/AC Operating Procedures go through at least a vetting by the Board and that is preceded by a public comment.  I certainly thought this was the case for GNSO Operating Principles.  Not sure if this was the case for the ALAC change that just went through, but I thought it was. I don't understand why this would not be the case for SSAC as well.
> Or should we take this to mean that no SO/AC needs to go through public comment before changing it Operating procedures?

The ALAC has its function defined in the ICANN Bylaws. On the other
hand, it has its own Rules of Procedures which vary in the level of
detail, focussing primarily on elections, selections, appointments etc.
and leaving it to the Chair of the ALAC to define the way policy
discussion and other operational matters are undertaken.
The ALAC, when it had its Review, went through the normal process with
the SIC, with public comment period etc.
As noted, the ALAC Review was presented to the Board Structural
Improvements Committee (SIC), with all the bells & whistles that this
entices. The Full Board needed to agree on two changes in ICANN bylaws -
one to define the ALAC's Mission and the other to create Seat #15 on the

However, when reviewing its own internal Rules of Procedures, another
process it carried out independently, it did not need a resolution from
the Board nor a public comment. The one thing that the ALAC did,
however, was to pass the whole document by ICANN Legal to make sure
nothing in those Rules clash with ICANN Bylaws and other ICANN operating
documents. And of course, the ALAC voted on the document.

All of the ALAC's processes are published, including its process for
structural improvements and its own internal improvements to its Rules
of Procedures. I gather this is what Avri would like to see of the SSAC.
I personally am in favour of lifting shrouds of Secrecy from all ICANN
SOs/ACs, wherever possible. Possibly the most "Secret" of all ICANN
Committees, the NomCom, has undertaken such opening of its processes, to
the satisfaction of a lot of people in the Community. I haven't reviewed
what information the SSAC is currently publishing about its processes so
cannot judge if this is enough, but the litmus test on this is whether
the  Community understands how the SSAC operates or not.

A comment by Steve has surprised me: "They don't actually talk about
secret stuff, which I think is a limitation."
Actually I know for a fact that they do have some confidential
information that they discuss and sometimes work on. For example, newly
found DNS weaknesses which require patching and action before they are
announced. The Chair of the SSAC has shared such information with me in
the past and I have shared it with his agreement, with select members of
our community that work on technical security issues.

For the record, I agree with Steve on being against the ATRT2 and/or
other external Community processes imposing a structure on SSAC and/or
other advisory committees. The members of SSAC know better what helps
them most in their work. Whilst this may be documented today, perhaps
should this be formalised by the SSAC itself -- and maybe I'm just
stating the obvious and SSAC has already done that.

Kind regards,


Olivier MJ Crépin-Leblond, PhD

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