[bc-gnso] Elections

George Kirikos icann at leap.com
Thu Sep 3 16:38:03 UTC 2009

Liz, Liz, Liz,

(long message ahead, folks don't have to read it if they don't want to!)

On Thu, Sep 3, 2009 at 3:34 AM, Liz Williams<lizawilliams at mac.com> wrote:
> I am very disappointed with the conduct (not the results) of the elections

It would have been more appropriate to voice those concerns during the
election, rather than ex post, where it comes off as sour grapes. Had
you won the election, instead of experiencing a resounding defeat (62%
to 30% for Mike Roberts), would we have ever heard about election
problems? I think not.

> and have set out below my suggestions for a way forward.  The problems with
> the election illustrate again, despite months of discussion about
> accountability, transparency, charter improvements and policy development
> processes that we still haven't got things right.

I'm glad you're finally coming to the realization of what a lot of
members know, that there are a lot of things that need improvement in
the constituency. Members like myself have been pushing those positive
changes forward, and until now the "establishment" has been pushing
against them, and indeed as we've seen with the totalitarian draft
charter of a few days ago, are attempting to weaken the base of the
constituency even further.

Indeed, this is the first time the BC has voted on *any* matter since
the officers imposed a budget that did not reflect the wishes of the
members, and violated our charter by issuing a statement in support of
the IRT without the requisite vote, amongst other examples of poor
leadership. It was a poor strategic decision to align yourself so
closely with the "establishment" (you were "their" candidate, after
all, with the nomination/blessing of one of the officers, Philip
Sheppard). Not only were people voting against you (an incumbent, who
had every advantage in this election), not only were they voting for
Mike Roberts, a candidate of great stature, but the vote represented a
repudiation of the leadership of this constituency, given the first
opportunity to vote in a manner that would send a message.

It's been 2 days since that repudiation, and hopefully they have heard
that loud and clear. It would seem so, given the lack of open support
by them (and indeed anyone) in your attempt to take the Large-Business
rep NomCom position.

> I preface my remarks by saying how delighted I am that Mike Roberts has been
> encouraged to join our efforts -- the test for him will be whether he
> actually joins the constituency and takes an active role in its operations.

These backhanded compliments really reveal another reason people might
have voted against you. You've done this before:


when initially praising Mike Roberts, but instead of leaving it at
that, you tossed in a big "However........" It does not take a great
level of sophistication to see this, and I'm sure I'm not the only one
who noticed.

> place.  I
> was asked for and I submitted a note to the Councillors expressing my
> interest in volunteering for the Large Business representative seat, should
> no other nominees be received.  I don't know whether Waudo was given that
> option.

As Marilyn noted earlier, it's educational to see all the back-room
maneuvering that took place here, another "strike" against the
leadership of this constituency. As she wrote:

"However, I strongly object to the officers approaching someone
engaged in an active election and offering them a different seat than
the one they were standing for. That step however, was entirely
unknown to the membership so did not affect the vote of any member. In
fact, we are learning about it only now, from Liz, who has volunteered
this information to us.  Of course, theoutreach should not have
happened, and really, the offer deserved to be declined as

On the RAP Workgroup, I've recently written up the topic of "front
running", which involve the use of insider information.


Had the plan succeeded, it would have been a classic case of the use
of "insider information" to gain an unfair advantage.

> 2.  We are now in a situation where two candidates have lost the election
> who could have been selected for the position as runners-up.  There is
> nothing in the By-laws that would have prevented that happening, except that
> the nominees may not have wanted to.

It was not even a close election. An incumbent candidate with 30% of
the votes is in no position to be asking for the job as "runner up."

> Waudo and I have been significantly disadvantaged in the choices open to us

Oh, but you had seemingly every advantage that you neglected to
mention. You had the blessing of an officer. You had the officers
choosing the timing of the election. You had the ability to vote for
yourself (Mike Roberts didn't vote for himself, as he had no votes at
all). You had pre-campaigning on the mailing list (and an attempt to
eliminate Mike Roberts from the ballot) in July:


You had a year in office to "prove yourself" and meet people from the
constituency at meetings around the world, with travel fully paid for

Those don't sound like "disadvantages" to me.

> -- as a representative of WITSA Waudo is qualified to represent large
> business interests; having worked for large corporations I am qualified to
> do the same.  Indeed employment with a large organisation is not a
> requirement of this post -- sensitivity to the various needs of large
> businesses is much more important.

I've bought a Big Mac, but it doesn't qualify me to run McDonald's or
represent their needs. All the alchemy and incantations in the world
cannot transform bronze into gold, or a Category 3 member of the BC
into a Category 1 member that represents large businesses, like Rick's

> Having said that, I would support Rick's candidacy because he is able,
> highly critical of the constituency and may have some influence on making
> positive changes.  My issue is that the process was not public beforehand
> and candidates have not been treated equitably.

Indeed, it's nice to see you stand up so publicly to talk about people
being treated "equitably." Where was that sense of equity, justice and
due process when you and the officers tried to have me removed from
the constituency in the past few weeks, issuing private "warnings",
convening a "star chamber" without any evidence or proof? Dear lady,
when all is said and done, people value honesty more than fake
civility, a lesson I hope you have learned from all this. They'll keep
people like me around who are honest and plain speaking, because
people like me are for "positive changes." This has been a year of
"change" and the ones that go are the ones who stand in the way of it.

This election has been a litmus test that the officers who cling to
"power" and "titles" know went against them. There are people in life
who want to "be somebody", but there are others who want to "DO
something." There's a big difference. Most people have outgrown high
school cliques, outgrown "running for class president." That's why the
power flows from the *members* who want to *DO* something. Officers
are there to *serve* the members, seek their input and follow their

> 4.  With respect to Mike Roberts' nomination, it was very unfair that
> neither Waudo or I were given the chance to have a detailed statement of

Yes, yes, so many disadvantages and so much unfairness (yawn)......see above.

> If we are to be taken seriously as representatives of business interests, we
> need to smarten up immediately -- not sometime in the future, not when a
> notional charter is completed, not when we get around to it but immediately
> in every action we take.   I say this across the board in our operations --

That's one thing we can all agree on, not just now after you've lost
an election or before seeking the other position, but *always.* But,
glad to see you're embracing the need for change.

> from working on the Credentials Committee assessing new member applications
> & being involved in disciplining members; in my work on developing the new
> charter and encouraging a deliberate move to a new and broader mode of
> operation and in our work on policy development process improvements.  On

You started to "campaign" again here, but then "oops" on the
"disciplining members" -- you're talking about me, right? :) And the
charter? That's not something to be proud of, it was totalitarian and
even the NCUC has been mocking it:


If we want to get an acceptable new charter, it's so hard to modify
the draft one it might simply be easier to copy verbatim another
constituency's charter, perhaps even the one Dirk drafted for the


which followed the GNSO new template very well, although it would of
course need to be tweaked for the BC.

> the latter, no BC representative has been present on the Working Group on
> PDP improvements for many months.

Ouch, are you "calling someone out" for not showing up, just as I did at:


which might have prompted some scary "discipline"? Oh, please do tell:


there are only 2 BC members on that work team, yourself and Mike
Rodenbaugh, the same Mike Rodenbaugh who hasn't shown up at the last 2
RAP workgroup calls, and came on in the last couple of minutes of the
prior one, yet proudly trumpets all the "work" he does for the
constituency. Yet, has time to post comments in a "personal capacity"
on the Council list:


that have never been cross-posted to the BC list. Comments which I
agree with, as to conflicts of interest, but which are highly amusing
and ironic coming from him, given what's been said on this list before
re: applying for new gTLDs!

Let's agree that the constituency needs more "work horses" and fewer
"show horses."

> I am also making an official request that the results of the election are
> made public showing who voted for whom and how the weighted votes were
> applied.

It's funny, because in the "star chamber", where I was told from on
high I should appreciate the "special privilege" of giving direct
input into the new charter, I advocated transparent voting, using
systems like BigPulse.com that is used by ALAC, or like the Registry
Constituency who uses the "workgroup" model of showing who voted in
favour of a position, and those who didn't could create a minority
position that appears in final statements. Did those get reflected in
the new draft charter? Of course not!

But, since you asked, I'd be happy to tell you I cast all 3 votes of
my company (you had the chance to change the small business definition
too, so that companies like me get lower fees and only 1 vote) against
you, against the officers, and for change in the right direction, for
excellence, for Mike Roberts.


George Kirikos

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