[Internal-cg] FAQ - Question 18, accountability

WUKnoben wolf-ulrich.knoben at t-online.de
Tue Oct 7 04:28:21 UTC 2014

Thanks Milton,

I fully agree to your analysis and recommendation. I think the ICG -
together with the community - should explore potential ways to isolate
accountability parameters related and important to the IANA stewardship
transition. This could be a first step for ICANN commitments to reforms and
maybe seen as sufficient in the transition context.

There may be a conditional relationship to the second step to fulfill the
accountability demands with complete reforms but not a conditio sine qua non
to execute the IANA stewardship transition. I think your redraft of Q18
leaves space enough for discussion.

Best regards


-----Ursprüngliche Nachricht----- 
From: Milton L Mueller
Sent: Monday, October 06, 2014 4:00 PM
To: Manal Ismail ; Alissa Cooper
Subject: Re: [Internal-cg] FAQ - Question 18, accountability

There are quite a few unresolved issues on question 18 regarding
Also, in her comments on Question 12 Narelle seems to imply that the FAQ
should not be saying anything at all about accountability, which I think is

Let's go back to the relevant charter section. Here it is in full:

"The IANA stewardship transition process is taking place alongside a
parallel and related process on enhancing ICANN accountability. While
maintaining the accountability of Internet identifier governance is central
to both processes, this group's scope is focused on the arrangements
required for the continuance of IANA functions in an accountable and widely
accepted manner after the expiry of the NTIA-ICANN contract. Nevertheless,
the two processes are interrelated and interdependent and should
appropriately coordinate their work."

This clearly means that we must:
a) pay attention to whether the new arrangements proposed by the OCs provide
sufficient accountability after the NTIA goes away - accountability is
"central" to the process.
b) coordinate with the other accountability process.
c) recognize and somehow deal with the interdependence of the two processes.
They are interdependent because _regardless of what the OC's propose_ many
constituencies don't want the US to let go of IANA until they think ICANN as
a whole has made sufficient reforms regarding accountability.

Furthermore, Wolf-Ulrich has raised an important issue, namely that the
ICANN enhanced accountability process almost certainly will take longer than
our transition process needs to take. So how do we coordinate with a process
that is probably on a more extended time frame than ours? On the other hand,
people involved in the other process will likely oppose going forward with
the transition unless they are satisfied that ICANN has either executed or
is completely committed to sufficient reforms related to accountability.

Worse, you all need to understand is that our final proposal will not just
go to the NTIA, it will become meat for US Congressional committees to pick
over, and that Congressional scrutiny will be more concerned ICANN
accountability than with the IANA transition per se. Or, to put it
differently, if the accountability elements of our final proposal are not
deemed strong enough to let ICANN off the hook, and if the other ICANN
accountability process is not finished yet, we can expect strong opposition
to execution of our approved transition plan.

Because of its role, the ICG will be right in the middle of the two
processes, and this will probably prove to be one of the most difficult
aspects of our task. We will need to discuss this a lot more in LA.

With that in mind here is a proposed redraft of Q18

18. What is the relationship between the work of the ICG and the process
concerning ICANN accountability?

The ICG charter says that accountability is "central" to our process. The
ICG has asked the operational communities to consider oversight and
accountability in their proposals.  After receiving consensus proposals from
the operational communities regarding IANA, the ICG will conduct an analysis
and assessment of their implications for ICANN accountability. At that point
it will liaise with the ICANN accountability process and advise it on how
the results of our process affects their requirements.

I think this modification addresses Russ's objections and Wolf-Ulrich's
warning. It does not second-guess the OC results and it does not lock our
results to the completion of the other accountability process, though it
does try to coordinate them.

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