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Re: [ICANN-EU] USG's ultimate control, transition roadmap
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- Subject: Re: [ICANN-EU] USG's ultimate control, transition roadmap
- From: "Jeanette Hofmann" <firstname.lastname@example.org>
- Date: Tue, 3 Oct 2000 04:31:03 +0100
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- Comment: This message comes from the icann-europe mailing list.
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- Organization: Wissenschaftszentrum Berlin
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Dear Cameron, thank you for your thought provoking contribution.
> What you don't find are international organizations of the
> sort I described above in 'moral/ideal'. I suppose the closest there is
> to a mass organization with an accepted statutory role is the ILO, but
> even it has not got direct individual members, instead it is an
> affiliation of nation affiliations of trade unions.
> So a 'membership-driven' ICANN of the sort many people on this list
> would like to see would very much be breaking new ground in terms
> legal basis and its relationship with governments - there is no clear
> 'space' for it to fit into.
This is an accurate description of the problem. InterNational relations
are by definition and tradition structured around nations. Not designed
for individual participation, that is. This is, among other things, the
reason for the growing popularity of NGOs. And this why those of us
who are striving for a democratic, member/user-driven administration
of the Net's names and numbers face a problem that is actually quite
common: the lack of a proper role model (or is there any that would do
and has just escaped my attention?)
> The USG has a /very/ shabby record in
> ignoring/not participating in institutions as and when it can't be
> bothered with them - look at its backlog of dues to the UN for example,
> or its voting record in the UN Security Council.
I would never, never dare to state this as bluntly as you do. At any
rate, you won't be accused of being hostile to the US ;-))
On the other hand it
> has a very well-developed /internal/ political system which gives a
> strong role in policy-making to mass membership organizations.
> Therefore, for the sake of realpolitik, it would seem sensible not to
> put ICANN 'out in the cold' as a completely international organization
> where the US will just start ignoring it. If it stays as an internal US
> organization the USG will at least listen to it.
Seriously, wouldn't that mean that the USG is only willing to listen to
itself or, for that matter, to a body controlled by the USG?
> All of the above points don't mean that ICANN can't or shouldn't become
> 'non-US', only that it should move at a sensible pace and avoid
> marginalizing itself.
A few minutes ago, Larry Lessig made the following comment on the
US candidates forum:
"If ICANN goes slowly keeping itself focused an a narrow task it is less
likely to excite the attention of government. If it doesn't go slowly, it
deserves the attention of government."
Obviously, this refers to the USG. And the slow pace could be related
to both architectural decisions and organizational changes. If it were
only a matter of time, I could live with a slow pace. And since it seems
clear to various groups of stakeholders that the ITU (nation- and
company-based) model of decision-making doesn't work for the
Internet, it may in fact need some time to come up with a better
I really wish we could convince some open-minded lawyers to
participate actively on this list.
> I think the 'transition roadmap' should have the following features: *
> clear timescale and intermediate 'milestones' to avoid the possibility
> of foot-dragging and backsliding by the ICANN board. The first
> milestone would be the drawing up of a detailed roadmap! * Realistic
> timetable to avoid veto by USG - I would rather ICANN took 3 years for
> the transition but did it probably than tried to be overambitious and
> ended up being blocked.