[bc-gnso] CSG charter and knock-on effects to BC charter

Deutsch, Sarah B sarah.b.deutsch at verizon.com
Fri Sep 24 20:51:33 UTC 2010

Just to weigh in here, we have a deadline to work on our CSG Charter revisions.  It looks like we've tweaked the timing of the BC meeting in October to discuss the CSG Charter first thing in the morning with the CSG reps and any others who wish to attend.  This timing will make sure that those of you who don't want to be tortured by this discussion don't have to attend so early.  Of course, anyone who is interested is more than welcome to join.  Again, just to reiterate our discussion of this topic in Brussels, the CSG Charter should be a noncontroversial exercise.  It will be high level document leaving much of the actual policy decisionmaking to each Constituency.

Mikey is correct that the BC Charter was only supposed to be an interim document.  The same new GNSO Structural Improvements/Operating Procedures, which our Councilors voted in favor of now require us to update the BC Charter.  Mikey lists below an excellent summary of many of the issues that need to be addressed.  In addition, some of the other areas these procedures now require us to address include adding provisions about term limits, transparency, financial accountability and record keeping, voting remedies, etc.

This is not to say we need to scrap the current Charter we all worked so hard to create.  It will primarily be an exercise of updating and adding.  

Philip asks whether the BC has better things to do and whether some of the elected officers have "sufficient experience" to work on the BC Charter update.  I've only been the CSG rep for a short time, but I think we realize that we are all volunteers here. I personally have nearly 25 years working as an attorney on many legal issues that are much more complicated than a Charter update.  My recommendation is that since we are required to update our Charter anyway, it seems to make sense to take a shot at it now.  We can talk to other constituencies, ask questions of ICANN staff and make sure that this is an open, collaborative and cordial process.  Or we could wait and hope that next year's officers have "sufficient experience."   


Sarah B. Deutsch 
Vice President & Associate General Counsel 
Verizon Communications 
Phone: 703-351-3044 
Fax: 703-351-3670 

-----Original Message-----
From: owner-bc-gnso at icann.org [mailto:owner-bc-gnso at icann.org] On Behalf Of Mike O'Connor
Sent: Friday, September 24, 2010 8:39 AM
To: bc - GNSO list
Subject: Re: [bc-gnso] CSG charter and knock-on effects to BC charter

hi all,

i've read through our current charter just to remind myself of the major issues we were working on when we drafted it.  my sense when we passed it on up the chain was that it was an interim document that was going to get revised once we had a better feel for the CSG charter (one "layer" above us in the GNSO) and after we'd had some experience with its day-to-day implementation (the kinds of things that i bet Chris has on his list).

so i'll join the chorus that is saying that this review of our charter is a Good Thing, and that this is about the right time to do it.

here are some of the big issues that i recall (hastily constructed after a quick reading, i'm probably missing a few);

-- membership -- whether/how consultants and new-gTLD-applicants fit in our membership focus.  

-- disclosure -- whether consultants/lawyers/etc. needed to disclose their clients and the interests of those clients (we've got a new framework from the GNSO to incorporate into this one)

-- Credentials Committee -- processes for members to appeal if their application is denied, and processes for disciplining members  

-- GNSO Council representatives -- the "each constituency elects 2" structure was an interim thing awaiting decisions further up the food-chain

-- Executive Committee -- this charter created the Executive Committee and their roles out of thin air, so there well may be a number of tweaks that need to be applied based on experience

-- Finance and Policy Committees -- again, created from whole cloth.  experience may be a good teacher here as well.

-- Policy-development process -- thresholds for adopting policy positions, process, etc.

-- role and supervision of the Secretariat -- this was substantially changed, again experience may be a good teacher

-- standards of behavior -- a very tough issue that may be informed by subsequent work of various players

-- the level of accountability, authority and responsibility that apply to (and between) Council reps, Excom members and the constituency -- this one clearly needs work and clarification

as i say, this is just the highlights through a foggy memory -- but i think it's a reasonable starting point for an "issues list" for discussion.  i'm not sure we need to revisit all of these, but i'm perfectly fine with the decision by our leadership to take a look at the charter now that we've had some experience with it.


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