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[gnso-osc] GNSO Council Proxy Procedures: Clarification

  • To: "'Philip Sheppard'" <philip.sheppard@xxxxxx>, <gnso-osc@xxxxxxxxx>
  • Subject: [gnso-osc] GNSO Council Proxy Procedures: Clarification
  • From: "Ken Bour" <ken.bour@xxxxxxxxxxx>
  • Date: Tue, 05 Apr 2011 12:16:04 -0400


In answer to your question, it might be helpful to understand that the GOP
defines two types of abstentions:  volitional and obligational.   The latter
category occurs when some personal or professional conflict arises with
respect to a motion (a.k.a. "conflict of interest").   Volitional
abstentions include the following types of situations (illustrative) that a
Councilor might encounter:
   - Perception of being inadequately informed
   - Has not participated in relevant discussions or studied available
   - Lacks sufficient understanding, expertise, or technical knowledge

When the GCOT first started working on voting remedies, they only applied to
the above abstentions.  Later, it occurred to the GCOT that voting remedies
should also be available for incidental absence and even more permanent
situations such as leaves and vacancies.  Because the entire section on
abstentions and remedies had already been drafted, the GCOT recognized that,
for an absence, all that a Councilor would have to do is declare a voluntary
abstention (added 4th reason = I cannot be present) and the voting remedies
become available without having to perform major surgery on the procedures.
In essence, an abstention is interpreted to mean, quite simply, "I choose
not to vote" and it can be declared for any number of legitimate reasons
including non-attendance.  

I understand how this construct might appear confusing (i.e., absence ->
abstention); however, I assure you that no deception was ever intended.
Everything summarized above is thoroughly documented within Sections 3.8 and
4.5 of the GOP.  

If you have any additional questions, I will do my best to address them.
The GCOT's development of these procedures, as you can imagine, was intense
and challenging and took the better part of a year to accomplish.  I
retained in my archives every email and document version from the earliest
drafts (Fall 2009).  We also have the audio recordings of GCOT meetings.
With a bit of research, I should be able to reconstruct the logic tree for
practically every consensus decision made.  


Ken Bour

P.S.  The Voting Direction remedy does not apply in the case of an absence -
only an abstention caused by some conflicting situation.  Also, when Voting
Direction does apply, it can only come from an Appointing Organization, not
another Councilor.  

-----Original Message-----
From: owner-gnso-osc@xxxxxxxxx [mailto:owner-gnso-osc@xxxxxxxxx] On Behalf
Of Philip Sheppard
Sent: Tuesday, April 05, 2011 10:46 AM
To: gnso-osc@xxxxxxxxx
Subject: RE: [gnso-osc] GNSO Council Proxy Procedures: Clarification

Thanks Ken,
I hoped had had caught this is my point 2 but your detail is most helpful.

Personally, I find the idea of declaring an abstention when in fact its an
absence to be odd.
At best it is confusing, at worst deceptive (especially if a voting
direction is then provided by the absent Councilor) !

I'd be interested to learn why this construction was invented.


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