[ianatransition] Jurisdiction (was Composition of the ICG)

Richard Hill rhill at hill-a.ch
Mon Aug 4 15:53:37 UTC 2014

Dear John,

I agree with what you say below.

Regarding the political aspect, historically it arose when the US government
disregarded the community consensus proposal (the IAHC MoU) and unilaterally
asserted control.  As I've said before, we now have to figure out how to
back out of that.

The issue has been political, as Parminder says, for the past 15 years. That
is a fact.  Maybe it can be de-politicized, maybe not.

To be clear: what is political is not the performance of the IANA function,
but the stewardship/external accountability.

And we are discussing the transition of that stewardship, so we are
discussing a political issue.  Personally, I think it should never have been
a political issue, but it is, and we have to face that.  I think that this
message from Jean-Jacques Subrenat is worth reading:


If there were immunity of jurisdiction (or something equivalent) and the
IANA function were strictly limited to implementing decisions taken
elsewhere (as it is now), then indeed the IANA function properly speaking
should not be political (in an ideal world).

But there still would be a political issue regarding the decisions, so the
discussion would just take place at a different level.


> -----Original Message-----
> From: John Curran [mailto:jcurran at istaff.org]
> Sent: lundi, 4. aout 2014 17:38
> To: rhill at hill-a.ch
> Cc: Andrew Sullivan; ianatransition at icann.org
> Subject: Re: [ianatransition] Jurisdiction (was Composition of the ICG)
> On Aug 4, 2014, at 10:50 AM, Richard Hill <rhill at hill-a.ch> wrote:
> > The fact that a US court might order IANA to transfer IP
> addresses implies
> > that the issue raised by Parminder is something that needs to
> be worked on
> > also with respect to addresses, and not just names.
> Richard -
>   You left off the phrase "contrary to adopted policy", i.e. the
> fact that a
>   court might order IANA to transfer IP addresses _contrary to
> adopted policy_
>   is a significant concern of some folks.  Note that a court
> ordering IANA
>   to maintain one of the registries in accordance with policy is
> actually a
>   feature, i.e. something that might be sought in enforcement of
> a contract
>   between IANA and a registry policy development body.
>   The global success of the Internet does mean that governments have every
>   right to be interested and involved in policy development for
> the various
>   registries, as there is always the potential for real-world governance
>   implications given the global & pervasive nature of the Internet. To the
>   extent that means that registry policy development may have "political"
>   implications, so be it.
>   I believe the confusion that arises is whether the IANA record-keeping
>   (as opposed to policy development for IANA registries) is inherently a
>   "political" matter... I acknowledge that having these
> registries nominally
>   under the control of a single government today makes it such,
> but thought
>   that the goal was to establish mechanisms such that the IANA is
> free from
>   any risk of ad-hoc changes from any source, governments
> included. The IANA
>   performs a set of technical tasks that are record-keeping, and proper
>   execution can be objectively measured, so I'm having trouble
> understanding
>   your (and parminder's) view that IANA's performance is inherently a
>   political matter.
> Thanks!
> /John
> Disclaimer: My views alone.

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