[CCWG-ACCT] The Internet's design and ICANN responsibility (was Re: GPI)

David Post david.g.post at gmail.com
Thu Jan 7 22:00:19 UTC 2016

At 12:03 PM 1/5/2016, Paul Rosenzweig wrote:
>At last, something everyone can agree on.  The question then is 
>HOW?  How do we set up an accountability system that confines ICANN 
>to this function.
>Our chosen method (which I continue to support) is to a) narrowly 
>define the mission in writing; and b) allow people outside the 
>corporation to invoke a
>neutral arbitral mechanism (the IRP) to call the corporation to 
>account when/if it goes beyond the mission assigned.

I guess I'd ask the question this way:  Even assuming that we agree 
with the method we've chosen (i.e., to narrowly define the mission, 
and to allow people outside the corporation to invoke a
neutral arbitral mechanism (the IRP) to call the corporation to 
account), do we think that the recommendations as currently 
formulated implement that approach in a way that is likely to be 
effective?  And if not, why not?

Personally, I have some concerns about that.  First, I worry that the 
mission has become watered-down and so tangled up with qualifying 
language that it will not serve as an effective brake on ICANN's 
actions, and that the central role of "consensus" in ICANN's 
decision-making has been diminished to the point where it too won't 
be an enforceable constraint; and second, I am not yet convinced that 
the neutral arbitral mechanism, the important details of which have 
yet to be fleshed out, will, much like the current IRP, be 
unwilling/unable to enforce meaningful constraints on ICANN's actions.


>-----Original Message-----
>From: David Post [mailto:david.g.post at gmail.com]
>Sent: Tuesday, January 5, 2016 9:52 AM
>To: Andrew Sullivan <ajs at anvilwalrusden.com>
>Cc: accountability-cross-community at icann.org
>Subject: Re: [CCWG-ACCT] The Internet's design and ICANN responsibility (was
>Re: GPI)
>At 04:19 PM 1/2/2016, Andrew Sullivan wrote:
> >Hi,
> >
> >So, I don't think "the global public interest", whatever that means,
> >does anything to help us to understand what ICANN should do.  ICANN
> >should pay attention to its well-understood and needed functions.  It
> >should not go adventuring out into global governance issues that
> >distract from that narrow set of responsibilities.  And it should not
> >embrace language that distracts from the narrow responsibilities --
> >lest such language become an attractive nuisance that encourages people
> >to think ICANN has power it never has had and (given the design of the
> >Internet) can't get.
>Very well put.
>David G Post - Senior Fellow, Open Technology Institute/New America
>Foundation blog (Volokh Conspiracy)
>book (Jefferson's Moose)  http://tinyurl.com/c327w2n music
>http://tinyurl.com/davidpostmusic publications etc.
>Accountability-Cross-Community mailing list
>Accountability-Cross-Community at icann.org

David G Post - Senior Fellow, Open Technology Institute/New America Foundation
blog (Volokh Conspiracy) http://www.washingtonpost.com/people/david-post
book (Jefferson's Moose)  http://tinyurl.com/c327w2n
music http://tinyurl.com/davidpostmusic publications 
etc.  http://www.davidpost.com

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