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[ga] Suspension of Voting Rights

On 10 April, the Names Council decided to adopt the report of the NC Budget
Committee which called for the suspension of the voting rights of
financially delinquent constituencies after 180 days "until such time as the
DNSO or its agent receives all past due amounts including the varies late
payment fees."

Only one constituency (the NCDNHC) did not vote in favor of this resolution.
One of their representatives, Milton Mueller, has argued "It is illegitimate
and bad policy to link budgetary matters to representation rights. DNSO is
supposed to be a representative body. Nothing in the ICANN by-laws or the
White Paper suggests that representation hinges on paying some arbitrarily
defined fee. Linking those two could cause ICANN serious legal and political
problems. (That is not an idle threat)."

The current cost of participation for each of the seven DNSO Constituencies
is $15,371.  It is clear that this sum represents a financial difficulty for
one constituency, and may well represent a barrier to entry for other
emerging constituencies (such as the long-awaited Individual's

At a time when ICANN projects $5,580,000 in revenues, and has readily
authorized $450,000 for an At Large Membership Study (ostensibly to allow
for enhanced community participation), I find it astounding that a decision
has been made to embark upon a course of action that potentially puts
member's voting rights in jeopardy.  Rather than choosing to ask for a
Bylaws amendment that might provide for expenses reasonably related to the
legitimate activities of the Corporation (such as DNSO administrative and
operational costs), punitive measures have instead been adopted.

This is a classic case of the tyranny of the majority, and should be a
matter of grave concern to the membership of the General Assembly.  What is
at stake is the prospect that certain domain name policy issues may be voted
upon by a body that is no longer fully representative of the Internet
community (in clear violation of White Paper principles).  The General
Assembly should be taking a stand on this issue.

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