Review of ICANN Regions - Further Overseas Territory Perspective
Further to David Archbold's comments, with which I largely
agree, it seems that in allocating which countries belong
in what regions too much emphasis has been given to
current or even historical political associations (by that
I mean dependant territories), rather than to the more obvious geographic, trade or even ethnic connections.
There is another issue related to this allocation of "who goes where". Currently the North American region has a very small number of members relative to the other regions and yet it still is guaranteed one director. While some may consider this appropriate, considering the sheer number of Internet 'users' in the North American region, that isn't what this level of representation is about.
As David pointed out the six UN regions have already been compressed into five. That means that a committee has already found the UN regions inadequate for ICANN purposes. It therefore seems falicious to argue that the use of a modified UN region list meets the criteria of "existing international norms for regional distribution of countries".
Going further with that thought, scanning through the previous discussions on this there doesn't seem to be such a thing as "existing international norms for regional distribution of countries". Most of these 'norms' seem to fall down because they are continental-centric in their approach.
Maybe the fastest way to get this right is to get every ccTLD to declare what region they believe they belong to, WITHOUT prescribing the list of regions in advance. For instance, many Pacfic Island countries would simply state that they belong to the Pacific - with no reference to Asia. Having done such a survey ICANN would have not only a reasonable declaration as to what region each ccTLD believes it belongs to but also an excellent sampling as to what regions it should have.
Regards, Lee Humphries Assistant Manager Information Services Solomon Telekom Company Limited www.telekom.com.sb www.sbnic.net.sb .sb ccTLD