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Summary Analysis of Comments In Public Forum - New Consumers Constituency Petition and Charter

  • To: "gnso-consumers-constituency@xxxxxxxxx" <gnso-consumers-constituency@xxxxxxxxx>
  • Subject: Summary Analysis of Comments In Public Forum - New Consumers Constituency Petition and Charter
  • From: Robert Hoggarth <robert.hoggarth@xxxxxxxxx>
  • Date: Wed, 20 May 2009 20:28:22 -0700

Summary and analysis of public comments for:

New Consumer's Constituency Petition and Charter

Comment period ended: 14 May 2009

Summary published: 20 May 2009

Preparation by: Robert Hoggarth, Senior Policy Director


In June 2008, the Board of Directors endorsed a series of recommendations on 
how to improve the structures and operations of the Generic Names Supporting 
Organization (GNSO). One of the significant drivers of those recommendations 
was the goal to maximize participation in the GNSO and its policy development 
processes. Among the various recommendations endorsed by the Board was that 
ICANN take steps to clarify and promote the option to self-form new 
constituencies as a means to increase participation in GNSO policy development 

The current ICANN Bylaws provide that any group of individuals or entities may 
petition the Board for recognition as a new or separate constituency, in 
accordance with Section 5(4) of Article X. Such a petition must explain (1) why 
"the addition of such a Constituency will improve the ability of the GNSO to 
carry out its policy-development responsibilities" and (2) why "the proposed 
new Constituency would adequately represent, on a global basis, the 
stakeholders it seeks to represent."

The ICANN Board has now received a total of three formal petitions from 
prospective constituencies, including the subject of this forum - the Consumers 
Constituency.  At the direction of the Board, the ICANN Staff developed a 
two-step process for potential new constituencies to follow. The proponent of 
the Consumers Constituency completed the first step of the process on 28 
February 2009 by filing a Notice of Intent to Form a New Constituency 
 [PDF, 28K]. The proponent of the Consumers Constituency completed the second 
step of the process- submission of a New Constituency Petition and Charter 
  [PDF, 228K] and Introduction Letter 
  [PDF, 109K] on 14 April 2009.
Community comment on new constituency petitions and charters is an important 
component of the Board's evaluation of these petitions and will be used to 
inform the Board's decisions to approve or, at its option, to recommend any 
alterations or amendments to the various submissions.


At the time this summary was prepared, a total of 6 community submissions were 
posted to the forum.  One comment was unrelated to the topic at hand and one 
comment was an apparent spam posting; thus, there was a total of 4 relevant 
comments.  The contributors, both individuals and organizations, are listed 
below in chronological order by posting date (with initials noted in 
parentheses).  The initials will be used in the foregoing narrative to identify 
specific quoted contributions.

Organizations and Groups:

*     AIM - European Brands Association, by Philip Sheppard (AIM)
*     Atlanta International Language Institute, by Eva Williams [Note: this 
post was off topic](AILI)
*     GoDaddy.com, by Tim Ruiz (GDC)


*     S. S. Kshatriya (SSK)
*     Marcus (M)


This document is intended to broadly and comprehensively summarize the comments 
of the various contributors to this forum but not to address every specific 
argument or position stated by any or all contributors.  The Staff recommends 
that readers interested in specific aspects of any of the summarized comments 
or the full context of others refer directly to the specific contributions.

Of the four respondents, one supported the petition, two did not support it, 
and one did not address the issue of support/non-support.

Proposal Opponents:

Those who did not support the petition presented differing arguments.  In 
particular, the GDC comments expressed two concerns.  The first was that the 
petition and charter appeared to be duplicative with another proposed petition 
and charter, that of the Cybersafety Constituency.  Thus, GDC urged the ICANN 
Board to exercise caution when considering potentially duplicative petitions.  
Second, the GDC noted that the Consumers Constituency mission identified 
content-related issues as areas of concern, such as fraud, spam, and phishing, 
that GDC considers to be outside the scope of ICANN policy development, and 
which could lead to the constituency or its members misconceiving ICANN's role 
and purview concerning these issues.

SSK, on the other hand, objected to the Consumers Constituency petition and 
charter for two different reasons.  First, SSK noted that the formation of such 
a constituency was an "indirect and strenuous" way of achieving the goal of 
changing policy relating to cybercrime and that, "the founders of CC should 
have other avenues to meet their interests and that such avenues area 
available."  Second, SSK objected to the petition and charter due to the 
constituency's apparent lack of adequate funding.  In particular, SSK 
emphasized that the formation of a new and active constituency requires 
considerable expenses and in his opinion ICANN should require founders of new 
constituencies to raise certain minimum funds.

Comments from M where solely directed at SSK's opinion concerning mandated 
funding for new constituencies.  Specifically, M proposed that there should be 
no change concerning funding of new constituencies, but that in the future 
ICANN might require that constituencies achieve certain goals within a 
specified time period or they would dissolve.

Proposal Support:

AIM supports the Consumers Constituency petition and charter noting that ICANN 
policy development has neglected consumers' safety, security and stability 
concerns regarding the DNS for too long.


The ICANN Board is likely to consider all the relevant community input and move 
forward with guidance regarding all the new constituency submissions as soon as 
practicably possible.  Any decisions with respect to the approval of the new 
constituency charters will likely take place in the context of the GNSO 
Improvements implementation processes.

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