ICANN ICANN Email List Archives


<<< Chronological Index >>>    <<< Thread Index >>>

jan scholte supplementary comment

  • To: "comments-ccwg-accountability-draft-proposal-04may15@xxxxxxxxx" <comments-ccwg-accountability-draft-proposal-04may15@xxxxxxxxx>
  • Subject: jan scholte supplementary comment
  • From: Jan Aart Scholte <jan.scholte@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • Date: Tue, 2 Jun 2015 09:35:37 +0000

I have previously posted 14 reflections on the CCWG draft proposal in early 
May. Now, as the public comment period nears an end, several of those 
reflections might be restated for special emphasis.

One is to maximize the correlation between the ICANN community as represented 
in the community empowerment mechanism and the evolving wider world of global 
Internet stakeholders. Already one sees that the functional, regional and 
social distribution of participation in the IANA transition deliberations does 
not always correspond to the map of current Internet stakeholders. To be 
concrete, suppliers are much more present than users, the North Atlantic and 
Anglophones are much more present than their share of actual and prospective 
Internet engagement, and there is disproportionately low participation of young 
persons and women. The CCWG draft proposal acknowledges the issue of 
'diversity', but no concrete steps are advanced to address the situation. In 
particular what, if anything, is going to be done - immediately and/or in the 
longer term - regarding the composition and workings of the community 
empowerment mechanism? Otherwise the purported 'empowerment' mechanism might in 
practice actually marginalize some important stakeholders. For example, would 
one do nothing if the SOs and ACs delivered a 'community empowerment mechanism' 
composed entirely of middle-aged white Anglophone business men from urban 

A second key point is the accountability of those who hold ICANN to account, 
particularly through the new community empowerment mechanism. This can be a 
major challenge for private global governance institutions, as the current 
scandal around FIFA strikingly illustrates. How does one ensure that 
appointments to the 'community empowerment mechanism' do not become the object 
of cosy insider deals, where a small group of well-connected veterans control 
the show and become divorced from the wider world of constituents to whom they 
are meant to answer? Where membership of the community empowerment mechanism 
becomes a stepping stone to membership of the board? One could imagine steps 
like a term limit, a prohibition on subsequent board membership, and 
intensified efforts by ICANN to attract new blood. The CCWG report could at a 
very minimum explicitly identify the issue of community accountability. 
Otherwise a skeptic can worry that the activist community has a blind spot 
and/or complacency on its own accountabilities.

A third headline point - which follows from the first two - is that CCWG's work 
is clearly not finished when the IANA transition is completed. A continuation 
of the CCWG or some successor body is needed to address Work Stream 2 matters 
post-transition. The CCWG report could commit more strongly than it currently 
does on page 87 to continued existence and work beyond the transition.

<<< Chronological Index >>>    <<< Thread Index >>>

Privacy Policy | Terms of Service | Cookies Policy