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RE: Summary and analysis of public comment during Paris meeting

  • To: iic-consultation@xxxxxxxxx
  • Subject: RE: Summary and analysis of public comment during Paris meeting
  • From: Mike Sax <mike@xxxxxxx>
  • Date: Tue, 29 Jul 2008 10:23:45 -0700

I am writing in response to Kieren McCarthy’s "Summary and analysis of public comment during the Paris meeting." In that summary document, Kieren does a great job summarizing the wide-ranging discussion from Paris - thank you, Kieren.

However, I would like to refine his summary of the points I tried to make in Paris. In the summary, Kieren combined my comments with that of Tucows’ Eliot Ness into the following open question:

"What actual impact does ending the JPA / transitioning to the private sector have on ICANN's relationship with the United States government?"

My intended comment was a little different. I am a Belgian citizen currently residing in the United States. Having followed the WSIS and IGF debates over the United States Government’s purported control over ICANN, I have yet to see the problem.

For all the rhetoric, I have not seen any real evidence of the US Government interfering with ICANN’s technical management of the Internet infrastructure. Even the .XXX example, looks to be blown out of proportion as many other governments also voiced their concern about the TLD. Moreover, the ICANN Board rejected .XXX partly because the applicant lacked the full support of the sponsored community.

So, my question to the Board was: Am I was simply missing something about whether US government oversight has adversely affected ICANN’s operation. If not, we should look at some of the positive aspects of ICANN’s current relationship with the United States government (protection from capture, protection of private-sector led governance, etc.) and find ways to continue those positive aspects following the JPA.


Mike Sax
President and founder of Sax.net

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