[council] Final GAC communique

Jonathan Robinson jrobinson at afilias.info
Fri Nov 29 17:10:20 UTC 2013

Thanks Brian,

Our group looks to be settling as follows:

GNSO Council (6)

Vice Chair 1
Vice Chair 2 
3 x Councillors (Amr, Brian, Mickey)

GAC (6)

Spain (2 reps alternating)
Costa Rica

Please expect a Doodle poll to see if we can get together in the next couple
of weeks.


-----Original Message-----
From: Winterfeldt, Brian J. [mailto:brian.winterfeldt at kattenlaw.com] 
Sent: 28 November 2013 23:19
To: Amr Elsadr
Cc: Mike O'Connor; <jrobinson at afilias.info>; Mary Wong; Council GNSO
Subject: Re: [council] Final GAC communique

I'm happy to participate as well.



Brian J. Winterfeldt
Head of Internet Practice
Katten Muchin Rosenman LLP
2900 K Street NW, North Tower<x-apple-data-detectors://0> - Suite 200 /
Washington, DC 20007-5118<x-apple-data-detectors://1/0>
p / (202) 625-3562<tel:(202)%20625-3562> f / (202)
brian.winterfeldt at kattenlaw.com<mailto:brian.winterfeldt at kattenlaw.com> /

On Nov 27, 2013, at 1:59 PM, "Amr Elsadr"
<aelsadr at egyptig.org<mailto:aelsadr at egyptig.org>> wrote:

Me too.



Sent from mobile

On Nov 27, 2013, at 5:56 PM, Mike O'Connor
<mike at haven2.com<mailto:mike at haven2.com>> wrote:

i'm in.


On Nov 27, 2013, at 10:51 AM, "Jonathan Robinson"
<jrobinson at afilias.info<mailto:jrobinson at afilias.info>> wrote:

Great to have this level of engagement on a topic!

A couple of points on status:

1. The issue arises formally from a recommendation of ATRT 1 i.e. that the
GAC should engage earlier with the GNSO PDP.
2. My interpretation is:
a) that it is intended that this engagement / input should be such that when
(and if) the GAC does provide Advice (to the Board), it is at least not
unexpected and, at best, consistent with GNSO policy / policy advice.
b) that the GAC's input (to the GNSO policy work) should be focussed
primarily on the potential (or actual) public policy implications of the
corresponding GNSO policy work.

Of course, the devil is in both the detail and the expectations of the
format of and response to the input of the GAC.  That is what the table that
Marika sent around attempts to start to flesh out.
And, therefore, the scope of the joint team to try to make progress on.

I received an update today from Manal which suggests that the GAC may
participate with as many as 6 participants.  In which case, it seems to me,
that we need a balanced number of participants.
Should that be the case, some of you on this thread may wish to volunteer to

To set expectations, I am anticipating that we'll have a mailing list and
regular calls (say 2 weekly), not dissimilar to a GNSO working group.


-----Original Message-----
From: Amr Elsadr [mailto:aelsadr at egyptig.org]
Sent: 26 November 2013 17:53
To: Mary Wong
Cc: Council GNSO
Subject: Re: [council] Final GAC communique

Interesting. Thanks Mary.


On Nov 26, 2013, at 6:43 PM, Mary Wong
<mary.wong at icann.org<mailto:mary.wong at icann.org>> wrote:

For the benefit of some of the newer participants among us and the GNSO
community - note that even when GAC members participate in WGs, they do not
do so as representatives of the GAC, or even their own countries, though
they may of course be able to inform the WG of either the GAC's position (if
there is one) on the issue at hand. The GAC has been very firm about this,
and it may partly have to do with how GAC consensus is achieved - as in
other multi-lateral forums, "consensus" is reached if there is no objection
by a GAC member to a particular position.
Conversely, if just one GAC member objects to a particular position, there
is therefore no consensus. This is of course different from how GNSO PDPs
and WGs work.

As Marika has mentioned, this discussion could be helpful to the small group
from the GNSO that will be discussing methods of early engagement with/from
the GAC, mindful of Thomas' distinction between GAC Advice (as conceived in
the ICANN Bylaws) and GAC input.


Mary Wong
Senior Policy Director
Internet Corporation for Assigned Names & Numbers (ICANN)
Telephone: +1 603 574 4892
Email: mary.wong at icann.org<mailto:mary.wong at icann.org>

* One World. One Internet. *

-----Original Message-----
From: Amr Elsadr <aelsadr at egyptig.org<mailto:aelsadr at egyptig.org>>
Date: Tuesday, November 26, 2013 12:18 PM
To: Council GNSO <council at gnso.icann.org<mailto:council at gnso.icann.org>>
Subject: Re: [council] Final GAC communique

Hi all,

Thanks for the clarification Thomas. It makes a lot of sense to be wary of
what kind of early engagement we¹d like to encourage from the GAC, and I
don¹t find it surprising that there seems to be a general sense of agreement
here on how this should be done.

I, like others, feel it would be great to have more GAC representatives
become involved in PDP WGs, but cannot confidently predict how this would
affect the GAC reaction at-large. I am not familiar with how the GAC
collectively reaches a position on PDP outcomes. I wouldn't be surprised to
learn that these positions are prepared by only a handful of their members.
If anyone else has insights on how this is done, I¹d appreciate it if you

Like Chuck said, we do have two GAC reps on the policy and implementation
WG, but this is not a PDP WG. And unless I am mistaken (and please correct
me if I¹m wrong on this Chuck), their participation both during calls and
on-list is quite limited. I bring this up because encouraging GAC members to
join WGs is one thing, and encouraging them to actively engage in the
consensus development of policy recommendations is another.
I hope we can encourage them to do both. I am curious to see how interaction
at this level (the WG level) might affect GAC Advice (capital
A) and their collective perception of the necessity and manner of early



On Nov 26, 2013, at 5:30 PM, Mike O'Connor
<mike at haven2.com<mailto:mike at haven2.com>> wrote:


*very* helpful.  thanks Thomas for taking the time to craft that reply.
and thanks to John for picking up how i misunderstood the core of Thomas'

i agree with you that capital-A advice would indeed be complicated for a WG
to handle, given that the goal of WG discussion is to arrive at positions
that are usually different from the starting points of each participant.

does Berry's contribution to this thread (describing USG comments during a
comment period) provide an avenue for slightly-less-firm input from the GAC,
or GAC members?  while WG's are not required to incorporate comments into
their final positions, they ARE required to respond to each comment -- which
might provide an avenue for dialog.
focusing on developing that approach might lead us to a good middle ground
between the WG's need for flexibility/negotiation and the GAC's need for
structure and due deliberation.


On Nov 26, 2013, at 10:14 AM, Thomas Rickert
<rickert at anwaelte.de<mailto:rickert at anwaelte.de>>

John, Mikey and Chuck,
to start with, I am not against early GAC input and you will remember that I
have encouraged that the GAC or individual GA members get involved at the
earliest possible date. Let me quote from my earlier e-mail where I
explicitly stated that:

The GAC should engage early so that PDP WGs get an indication as to what the
GAC or even individual GAC member's thinking is.
This is valuable and will help a lot.

What we should discuss, though, is whether GAC Advice (capital letter
A) should be directed at PDP WGs during a PDP or at the G-Council.

Bear in mind, I spoke about GAC Advice and not about GAC input.

My hesitation with respect to GAC Advice during a PDP stems from the
following considerations:

- The term GAC Advice has legal implications. At the moment GAC Advice is
only directed at the Board and the Board can only disregard GAC Advice under
certain circumstances.

-  If GAC Advice were also directed at PDP WGs, would or should that be a
second opportunity for the GAC to give Advice (capital A)? If so, what would
be the consequences of that?

- Could the WG disregard GAC Advice? If so, what would give the WG authority
to do so? PDP WGs work on recommendations to be made to the Council, but I
do not see that it has the legal authority to make binding decisions on
behalf of the GNSO or even ICANN, while, in fact, responding to GAC Advice
in one way or the other would be or would be seen as acting on behalf of

- If the WG followed GAC Advice, would that bind the Board at a later stage
so the Board looses the right to disregard it?

- Either way PDP WGs are tasked to work and I am not sure we should burden
their work with issues that might have far-reaching political implications
for the whole community.

- Comparable issues would arise if GAC Advice would be directed at the

Again, I very much in favor of GAC early engagement and the discussion that
we have here should not dilute that. Even more, GAC early engagement can
help avoid friction between the GAC's expectations and the communities work
product at a later stage and maybe avoid the necessity for GAC Advice to the

What I am asking for is that we carefully consider the consequences of GAC
input if such input took the format of GAC Advice for the reasons above.


Am 26.11.2013 um 12:36 schrieb John Berard
<john at crediblecontext.com<mailto:john at crediblecontext.com>>:


Can you confirm you were arguing against early GAC input?


Sent from my iPhone

On Nov 26, 2013, at 10:25 AM, "Mike O'Connor"
<mike at haven2.com<mailto:mike at haven2.com>>

hi all,

i lean in Chuck's direction with regard to WG participation.  i don't have
the history/knowledge to comment on the relationship between

as i've come to know the WG process over the years, i've found that it works
better when there are more inputs rather than fewer.  that doesn't mean that
it's easier, only that the results are more robust.
i've always hoped for more participation by members of the GAC and am keen
to find ways that they could do that.

i also agree with Chuck that earlier participation is a great thing.
much like any project, the sooner we can get help figuring out the gaps in
our thinking, or the reasons why a given direction is to be desired, the
easier it is to get on the right track.  and the less
backtracking/repair/recovery we need to do later on.
often people don't really mind changing the direction a conversation is
going if it resolves a divergence -- but when the journey is nearly done, WG
members are weary and the road to the new place is long, sometimes
participants get frustrated and resist the change just because it's hard to
get from here to there.

these thoughts don't just apply to the GAC, but any point of view that needs
to be expressed in a WG.  more voices is good.
earlier is good.

like Chuck, i'm willing to be persuaded.   :-)


On Nov 26, 2013, at 8:12 AM, "Gomes, Chuck"
<cgomes at verisign.com<mailto:cgomes at verisign.com>>


Please see my responses below.


-----Original Message-----
From: Thomas Rickert [mailto:rickert at anwaelte.de]
Sent: Sunday, November 24, 2013 5:45 PM
To: Gomes, Chuck
Cc: Avri Doria; Council GNSO
Subject: Re: [council] Final GAC communique

Hi Avri and Chuck,
in my view, we should have a discussion on our expectations some time soon.

Other than Avri, I do think that the GAC could engage early and / or
acknowledge the role and work products of the GNSO and at the same time only
consider the Board as its equal.

[Chuck Gomes] I think the Bylaws should be changed so the GAC is encouraged
to provide input to WGs as early as possible like they did with the IGO-INGO
PDP WG, albeit via the Board.  I personally think that the language in the
Bylaws that says that the GAC should be complemented with language that says
they also give advice to policy WGs that involve public policy issues.
The excuse that they are just advisors to the Board should be removed.

During the GAC/GNSO session it was mentioned that the GAC still needs to
consider when to give advice during a GNSO policy development process and I
am not sure we really want GAC Advice directed at the G-Council or even at
the WG level.

[Chuck Gomes] Why not?

The GAC should engage early so that PDP WGs get an indication as to what the
GAC or even individual GAC member's thinking is.
This is valuable and will help a lot. I would not like to see special rights
for the GAC to be implemented. In that regard, it does not harm if the GAC
sees the Board as the group to direct advice at.

[Chuck Gomes] As you can see by my earlier comments, I disagree but am open
to being convinced otherwise.

We should discuss this further - maybe in one of the upcoming telcos.

[Chuck Gomes] I am open to discussion but remember that I am only a
temporary alternate on the Council and probably will not be on any more
Council calls.


Am 22.11.2013 um 18:09 schrieb "Gomes, Chuck"
<cgomes at verisign.com<mailto:cgomes at verisign.com>>:

Note that we have two GAC participants in the Policy & Implementation (P&I)
WG.  We suggested in our letter to the GAC that they might be able to serve
in some sort of unofficial liaison capacity if the GAC was okay with that,
not representing the GAC but being communication channels.


-----Original Message-----
From: owner-council at gnso.icann.org<mailto:owner-council at gnso.icann.org>
[mailto:owner-council at gnso.icann.org] On Behalf Of Avri Doria
Sent: Friday, November 22, 2013 12:13 PM
To: Council GNSO
Subject: Re: [council] Final GAC communique


I do not think this should surprise us.  And I mean the disrespect the GAC
has for any structure lower than the Board.
For them to acknowledge our work would be for them to acknowledge that we
have a role on a par with theirs.  And governments never admit to being
equal to any one else - only in the IGF have we seem some loosening of that
in the general Internet governance arena.  I expect that they really do not
consider the Board their equals, but they put up with the things they need
to put up with.

They had a liaison with the Council in the past, but participation limited
them and limited their ability to give advise that took no account of the
work done in the GNSO.
Early engagement is contradictory to reinforcing the power of their advice -
which is their ultimate goal.

I think we should continue to invite and encourage them to participate.
Sooner or later one of them will take us seriously again - we have had some
WG participants from GAC in the past, we may again some day.  But we should
also not fool ourselves into expecting them to take any supportive notice of
our efforts.

I have every respect for those of you doing the essential work on improving
coordination between GAC and the GNSO, as I expect your main reward will be
knowing you tried, as opposed to any real GAC early engagement.  Hope I am


On 21 Nov 2013, at 18:00, Thomas Rickert wrote:

Nonetheless it is sad and I will say that I find it interesting to show
respect to the GNSO's PDP work by working on ways to engage and then
completely ignore work that is done in PDPs which is relevant to what they
are deliberating.


Am 21.11.2013 um 17:17 schrieb "Gomes, Chuck"
<cgomes at verisign.com<mailto:cgomes at verisign.com>>:

Remember that they never thought we should be considering this.


-----Original Message-----
From: owner-council at gnso.icann.org<mailto:owner-council at gnso.icann.org>
[mailto:owner-council at gnso.icann.org] On Behalf Of Thomas Rickert
Sent: Thursday, November 21, 2013 3:11 PM
To: Glen de Saint Géry
Cc: council at gnso.icann.org<mailto:council at gnso.icann.org>
Subject: Re: [council] Final GAC communique

sadly, the GAC communique includes Advise on IGO/INGOs, but does not mention
the GNSO's PDP WG or the motion that passed.



Am 21.11.2013 um 16:57 schrieb Glen de Saint Géry
<Glen at icann.org<mailto:Glen at icann.org>>:


Attached please find the finalised GAC communique from Buenos Aires.

The communique will be posted on the GAC Website later today.

Glen de Saint Géry
GNSO Secretariat
gnso.secretariat at gnso.icann.org<mailto:gnso.secretariat at gnso.icann.org>


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