[bc-gnso] New Developments with implications for business and role of governments within ICANN

Marilyn Cade marilynscade at hotmail.com
Thu Oct 10 05:58:14 UTC 2013

This week, two interesting developments in the road to determining more -or less intergovernmental influence or simply more governments oversight at ICANN took place. Some BC members are following these developments closely, but others may be just becoming aware, so I am calling these developments to BC members attention, and suggest that we include a discussion about this, in our preparation for ICANN 48, along with our work on policy priorities. 

There are undoubtedly some interesting views on how this move by the CEO of ICANN will impact ICANN focus and perhaps the implications or larger external agendas geopolitically that implicate business interests both within and external to ICANN. It is definately a shift away from the Crocker earlier hope that ICANN would stay narrowly focused on its own agenda and seek co existence with other players. 

What happened this week:
First, the I* organizations (ICANN, ISOC, IETF, IAB, RIRs, W3C) announced the Montevideo Agreement.  Members will have already read this on the ICANN front page of website and perhaps wondered what it meant, and why there was no consultation with ICANN stakeholders before such an announcement.

Then, just yesterday, the ICANN CEO/President flew to Brasil for a face to face with Brasil President and announced a new Summit to determine the fate and future of governance and oversight of ICANN and the IANA functions, stating a call for more governments to be engaged in governance of ICANN.


This email does not include my personal perspective on whether this is a wise strategy, but is an attempt to make other BC members aware of new developments.

What does this mean for the long run at ICANN in terms of focus on issues of priority to BC members is a good question.
Where did this come from, and how did it get so well developed, without a consultation with the broader community of stakeholders

I am just leaving the open consultation at the ITU on WSIS + 10 follow up, which of course, does include discussions about coordination fucntions, such as those performed by ICANN, but are much broader.  This process culminates in a high level event presently scheduled for Egypt, April 2014, following the two week ITU Development Conference.  Allies to the multi stakeholder approach to governance of the Internet public policy issues were successful at this just past meeting in resisting suggestions by a country -or three - to directly address IG, agreeing that these issues belong at Commission for Science and Technology, and at the IGF.  ICC-BASIS and USCIB are following the Open consultation closely, as well as some individual BC members, and both may have additional comments. 

I suggest that the BC membership, and leadership will want to be aware of the external activities driven by the CEO that call for a change in both oversight, a change in the role of governments within ICANN.  

Surprise announcements of this nature mean a lot of questions will develop.  

If anyone wants more details, I am happy to respond. 

Marilyn Cade
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