[council] RE: [pdp-pcceg-feb06] Statements of Interest

Ross Rader ross at tucows.com
Thu Jun 8 02:38:24 UTC 2006

Marilyn -

While I appreciate your effort to help move council operating policy
move forward by trying to catalyse the development of a standardized
interest management process that the GNSO can use at a variety of
levels, I feel that reaching out ICANN's General Counsel in this way is
premature and inappropriate.

The affairs and processes of the GNSO that are not covered by ICANN's
bylaws are solely an internal concern of the GNSO. It is not the
responsibility of the office of the General Counsel to specify our
operating policies.

I believe a more constructive approach would be to raise this issue at
our next council meeting, accompanied by a process or policy proposal
that we could consider, or failing that, identifying this is a pressing
issue that requires our immediate attention.

Would it be possible for you to withdraw your request and help us deal
with the issues as an internal matter for the consideration of the Council?


Marilyn Cade wrote:
> Dear John
> For some time now, it has been a good idea to bring the Council, and
> therefore its TFs, into alignment with a single ICANN approach on statements
> of Interest and Conflicts of Interest. 
> There has even been discussion of this at the Council level, and I know that
> you have had some thoughts relevant to this, from our discussions when I
> asked you to clarify the ICANN policies re conflicts and "interests" when I
> launched my new business, and left AT&T.
> I would assume that the same requirements of the Board, should be
> generalizable to the SOs, and their TFs. 
> I hereby request that the General Counsel's office attend the next Council
> call and provide clarification of what is the ICANN policy and how it is
> complied with by the Board, and any members of the Advisory Committees, and
> then, perhaps we can discuss how to create a mirror process for at least
> this SO. However, given that conflicts apply to all SOs and 
> Advisory Committees, perhaps a unified approach makes sense.
> I have attempted to address the questions raised, and it seems to me that
> there is no standard approach across the SOS, and consistency with the Board
> practices on how client relationships are declared - e.g. I  understand that
> the list of clients is provided confidentially to a "conflicts" committee,
> or something line that. Perhaps we can just enlist the same  Board committee
> to be the recipient of the "client" lists of any Councilors, or TF members.
> I think this is a short list of those who might be providing such a list,
> and it should not be onerous to the Board committee to provide that same
> "repository and review". That may not be the answer, but I'm sure that there
> is one that is appropriate.
> In the interest of fairness and non discriminatory treatment of all
> Councilors and TF members, this seems the most appropriate step to take.
> As you know, I have previously raised the need for this process.  We are all
> very busy, and I respect that. 
> However, given the concerns expressed by a colleague of mine from industry
> [see string below], I urge that this issue be addressed quickly. 
> Best regards,
> Marilyn Cade
> -----Original Message-----
> From: owner-pdp-pcceg-feb06 at icann.org
> [mailto:owner-pdp-pcceg-feb06 at icann.org] On Behalf Of David W. Maher
> Sent: Wednesday, June 07, 2006 3:40 PM
> To: Marilyn Cade; pdp-pcceg-feb06 at gnso.icann.org
> Cc: 'John Jeffrey'; Bruce Tonkin; council at gnso.icann.org
> Subject: RE: [pdp-pcceg-feb06] Statements of Interest
> Dear Marilyn:
> Thank you for your message.
> I do not believe that disclosure of your clients related to the 
> single letter names is adequate.
> Are you saying that your only clients who might have an interest in 
> the outcome of the PDPFEB06 are "AT&T and Overstock.com."?
> If you have other clients that might have an interest, they should be 
> disclosed, publicly and promptly.
> As I said, the PDP participants are entitled to know who is paying 
> you to promote the positions you take.
> Best regards
> David
> At 10:56 AM 6/7/2006, Marilyn Cade wrote:
>> Dear David,
>> Thank you for raising your concern openly so that it can be responded to
> and
>> address any concerns or questions that may exist on the part of any TF
>> member, or members of the ICANN community.
>> In Brussels, I named my clients related to the single letter names in our
>> discussion, and again, yesterday, on the call I stated that the clients for
>> the area of reserved names were AT&T and Overstock.com. As it turns out,
>> AT&T is not interested in single letters, but "symbols". Not to bore
>> everyone here but symbols have different technological issues than single
>> letters and thus it is very unlikely that there would be any discussion
>> feasible of releasing symbols of any nature.
>> I'm not sure if you are asking if I am trying to represent clients, but
>> without compensation, with the idea that they pay me for "outcomes". If
> that
>> is the question, then no. Not the case.
>> Let me address statements of interest, however. I agree with David that the
>> statements are not often easy to read for implications on conflicts, when
>> they only mention the name of a company, or suggest that the only issue is
>> whether there is a financial relationship to a registry or registrar. Let
> me
>> support David's call for all TF members  to examine their statements and
>> think about whether their interests are clearly identified.
>> AS I think everyone knows, the Council and its TFs are guided by policies
>> that also affect the Board of Directors.
>> Thanks again, David, for asking so that this can be addressed.
>> Best Regards,
>> Marilyn Cade
>> -----Original Message-----
>> From: owner-pdp-pcceg-feb06 at icann.org
>> [mailto:owner-pdp-pcceg-feb06 at icann.org] On Behalf Of David W. Maher
>> Sent: Wednesday, June 07, 2006 10:52 AM
>> To: pdp-pcceg-feb06 at gnso.icann.org
>> Subject: [pdp-pcceg-feb06] Statements of Interest
>> In yesterday's teleconf, I again raised the issue of Marilyn Cade's
>> failure to comply with the requirements for filing a statement of
>> interest in order to participate in this PDP.
>> The statements of interest on file are available at:
>> http://gnso.icann.org/issues/gtld-policies/statements-of-interest-pdp-feb06
> -
>> apr.html
>> Marilyn's statement includes the following:
>> "The clients of my business are concerned about the security and
>> stability of the Internet, and are strong advocates of ICANN's role
>> in managing and coordinating the technical aspects of the Internet.
>> I do not believe that I have conflicts of interest with ICANN. From
>> time to time, I may have clients who have a direct policy interest in
>> a particular policy area that is, o publicly could be active at ICANN. At
>> present, two clients that I advise have an interest in reserved names
>> in gTLDs. I have disclosed that to the gNSO Council, and to the
>> Business Constituency and in public statements in the ICANN's public
>> forum and to the ICANN senior staff."
>> This is not an adequate disclosure. It is clearly inconsistent with
>> the extent of disclosure made by other participants. The fact that
>> disclosure may have been made in other fora does not excuse the
>> failure to disclose the identity of these clients to this PDP.
>> We are entitled to know who is paying Marilyn to take positions on
>> the issues in this PDP. We are also entitled to know what
>> arrangements she may have for compensation contingent on the outcome
>> of this PDP, even if there is not currently a client relationship.
>> David W. Maher
>> Senior Vice President - Law & Policy
>> Public Interest Registry
>> 1775 Wiehle Ave, #102A
>> Reston, VA 20190  USA
>> (v) +1-312-876-8055
>> (f)  +1-312-876-7934
>> http://www.pir.org





                 "Don't be too timid and squeamish about your actions.
                                            All life is an experiment.
                             The more experiments you make the better."
                         - Ralph Waldo Emerson

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Ross Rader
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Tucows Inc.
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