[council] FYI: NCSG Letter to the Board re. Reconsideration Request 13-3

John Berard johnberard at aol.com
Thu Jun 27 16:23:39 UTC 2013


I am confused.  Are you saying that I am standing in the way of a letter to the board goverance group on this matter?  That is FAR from the case.  I just don't support "the Council feels" stuff because it is all subjective, even with our call, its transcript and this robust email exchange.  That's why you haven't heard much in the way of substantive disagreement except from Brian who was on the record clearly and early.

The point I am pressing is that the decision's basis has raised serious questions for the Council that ought to be aired and addressed.



-----Original Message-----
From: Maria Farrell <maria.farrell at gmail.com>
To: John Berard <john at crediblecontext.com>
Cc: Jonathan Robinson <jonathan.robinson at ipracon.com>; WUKnoben <wolf-ulrich.knoben at t-online.de>; council <council at gnso.icann.org>
Sent: Thu, Jun 27, 2013 3:56 am
Subject: Re: [council] FYI: NCSG Letter to the Board re. Reconsideration Request 13-3

Thanks, John, for your comments. I'm not sure how fruitful it is to continue pressing the point, but it seems clear to me that a majority of the stakeholder groups on the Council are very concerned with the issues NCSG has raised in its request and that Jeff has articulated in his letter. 

I have found it frustrating that efforts to secure agreement on any core principles of concern appear to have foundered, so I'm not sure how constructive it is to keep saying that the Council as a whole doesn't have a view.

I haven't heard much in the way of substantive disagreement, but perhaps my impression of our most recent call where others expressed concern about process or their ability to be heard is colouring my memory.

In any case, what is the status of a letter from the Council to the Board, articulating concerns? Can a formal decision taken to either send or not send Jeff's letter?

I think it is time we rose above individual stakeholder group concerns and considered the implications for the Council as a whole. 

All the best, Maria

On 26 June 2013 17:42,  <john at crediblecontext.com> wrote:

I will repeat what I said initially.
Jeff's proposed letter was accurate in exposing a set of issues that was of intense interest to the Council.  It was incorrect is suggesting the view was unanimous and that there was some decision taken on the part of the Council about it.
Raise the matter -- I was the one who brought of the notion of exectivication of decision making at ICANN -- sure, but be clear it is our concern, not our judgement.
--------- Original Message ---------
Subject: RE: [council] FYI: NCSG Letter to the Board re. Reconsideration Request 13-3

From: "Jonathan Robinson" <jonathan.robinson at ipracon.com>
Date: 6/26/13 7:30 am
To: "'WUKnoben'" <wolf-ulrich.knoben at t-online.de>, "'Maria Farrell'" <maria.farrell at gmail.com>, council at gnso.icann.org, john at crediblecontext.com

Personally, I have no difficulty with the principle of the point made by John and supported by Wolf-Ulrich.
That said, I believe Jeff has articulated a concern regarding this item which was then discussed and there was clearly some (un-quantified) support on the Council for this position.
Therefore, what would be helpful to me, and likely to the Council as a whole, is to hear any arguments as to why the concerns articulated are not necessarily concerns.
I hope I am not doing anyone a disservice here but I thought I heard questions seeking clarification or detail and some proposed variations to the wording of our communication with BGC,  but not necessarily any substantive arguments as to why the concerns raised (originally by Jeff) should not be concerns.

From: WUKnoben [mailto:wolf-ulrich.knoben at t-online.de] 
Sent: 26 June 2013 12:58
To: Maria Farrell; council at gnso.icann.org; john at crediblecontext.com
Subject: Re: [council] FYI: NCSG Letter to the Board re. Reconsideration Request 13-3


With respect to the fairness to those who did not raise similar concerns or couldn’t support the concerns raised at the last council meeting I join John’s comment.

Best regards



From: john at crediblecontext.com 

Sent: Wednesday, June 26, 2013 12:41 AM

To: Maria Farrell ; council at gnso.icann.org 

Subject: RE: [council] FYI: NCSG Letter to the Board re. Reconsideration Request 13-3




I am a fan of short-hand and jargon (it make life quicker and excludes the uninitiated) but your letter should have more correctly said "Some members of the GNSO Council expressed concern..."  It is clear there is no position taken and no unanimity.


A fine but important point.






--------- Original Message --------- 

Subject: [council] FYI: NCSG Letter to the Board re. Reconsideration Request 13-3
From: "Maria Farrell" <maria.farrell at gmail.com>
Date: 6/25/13 1:48 pm
To: "council at gnso.icann.org" <council at gnso.icann.org>

Dear Council colleagues,

Below for your information is a copy of a letter sent on behalf of the NCSG to the Board of Directors, which was received by the Board (via Bruce Tonkin's kind intercession) on 19 June. 

Bruce says the Board would be interested to meet and discuss the broad concerns about the multistakeholder model raised in the reconsideration request, and also confirms that the request itself will be discussed at the BGC meeting of 25 June. 

If and when we have any scheduling information about a meeting with the Board, we will share it so that others may be aware. 


All the best,


Dear ICANN Board of Directors:


I am writing to you on behalf of the Non-Commercial Stakeholder Group (NCSG) and other concerned members of the ICANN community regarding the harmful implications to the community-led multi-stakeholder policy development model if the ICANN Board decides to adopt the rationale provided in the recommendation of the Board Governance Committee (BGC) in response to the NCSG's Request for Reconsideration (13-3).  The rationale provided in the BGC's recommendation, which appears to be drafted by over-reaching lawyers, attempts to set a precedent that ICANN staff can over-rule the GNSO Council on policy decisions at its own discretion.  This decision has alarmed community members beyond the NCSG and beyond those who were originally concerned with the underlying issue that NCSG was initially probing of staff's adoption of the "TM+50" policy for the Trademark Clearinghouse.  


The GNSO Council expressed concern about the BGC decision rationale at length during council's 13 June meeting; and I encourage all Board Members to listen to audio recording of the GNSO Council discussion or read the attached transcript to get a better understanding the concerns of members of several different GNSO stakeholder groups.  


The rationale provided in the BGC decision, if adopted by the entire board, would cement the change in ICANN's policy development model away from the bottom-up community-led governance model to a top-down staff-driven model with no checks on abuses or poor staff decisions.  If the rationale provided in this BGC decision is adopted by the Board, which goes well beyond the narrow issue presented to it, ICANN threatens to undermine its own legitimacy as a global governance institution, and it loses the ability to label itself as a community-led bottom-up model for Internet governance.


We understand the BGC's recommendation is on the agenda to be adopted on 25 June 2013 by the Board's New gTLD Program Committee (NGPC).  Given the Board's record of adopting all 15 BGC decisions that have come before it in the last ten years, there is concern that this BGC recommendation will be similarly adopted by the Board with little understanding or discussion of the harm to ICANN's legitimacy and the multi-stakeholder model that this precedent threatens.  The handling of this reconsideration request has also raised concerns about ICANN's "accountability" mechanism, which appears to allow the same legal team that created and adopted a policy to later evaluate the legitimacy of that policy's adoption.


We therefore respectfully request that the Board meet with concerned members of the community including NCSG to permit a more complete discussion and understanding of the concerns raised by the rationale provided in the BGC decision and to allow for appropriate adjustments to the decision before it is adopted by the Board.  We would gladly meet with the Members of the ICANN Board during the Durban Meeting or before, at the Board's convenience, to discuss this decision and welcome all members of the community to join in the discussion.   Please let us know if the Board is available to meet with NCSG and others in the community on this crucial issue at your earliest convenience.   Thank you for your consideration.  We look forward to fruitful discussions going into Durban and stand ready to provide whatever assistance is needed.



Robin Gross

NCSG Chair

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