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[ga] Another Membership Study - Berkman Center Representation in CyberspaceStudy (and MAC)

FYI...More from Karl:


----- Original Message -----
From: "Karl Auerbach" <karl@cavebear.com>
To: "Hans Klein" <hans.klein@pubpolicy.gatech.edu>
Cc: <forum@atlargestudy.org>
Sent: May 21, 2001 00:47
Subject: Re: [ALSC-Forum] Another Membership Study - Berkman Center
Representation in Cyberspace Study (and MAC)

On Sun, 20 May 2001, Hans Klein wrote:

> I find it worrisome that the ALMSC meeting of May did consider the
> of fundamentally revising the At Large structure.  For example, one point
> raised was, "Should At-Large Members elect Directors to the ICANN Board?"
> See: http://www.atlargestudy.org/MtgSummaryMay5-6NY.shtml
> I don't understand how such a question could even be addressed, since it
> goes against the foundational agreements of ICANN.

Having been there and having participated in the events that transpired,
and having been personally thanked by Ira Magaziner for helping him obtain
a promise of some democratic aspects from ICANN:  It is my understanding
and belief that the NTIA would not have permitted the ICANN process to
proceed in the fall of 1998 except for the fact that ICANN made a
committment to quickly institute a meaningful at-large.

ICANN has dragged its heals and resisted fulfilling that committment.
ICANN is approaching its third birthday and there is still only an
intentionally crippled at-large that has no ability to evolve and organize
except via channels operated by ICANN's staff, a body that has a
demonstrated antipathy and hostility to even the mere existance of the

ICANN races to create entrenched monopolies.  ICANN races to ramify its
structure into a full fledged regulatory bureaucracy.  ICANN races forward
on all fronts except one - completing its promise to create a fully formed
at-large to which the corporation would be accountable.

And I too, do not understand the hesitency of the ALSC to make a clear and
unequivocal statement that it considers its obligation to be to help ICANN
complete its committment to establish a fully formed and fully empowered
at-large membership.

As it stands, even if a fully-empowered at-large is created, it will not
be able to elect directors, much less form itself into a cohesive body
with well defined coalitions, for several years.  Given that ICANN is
racing to create perpetually binding contracts that will be irrevocable
and unamendable by future Boards of Directors, this delay has already
condemned any future at-large to at best a limited role, unable to reverse
the gifts that the present at-large-less ICANN structure has confered upon
ICANN's special-interest "stakeholders".

It is not yet too late to hold elections *this year* for at least those
four board seats occupied by those original board members whose terms have
been extended, without approval from the at-large, from the initial one
year until at least four years[*].


[According to the by-laws, the extended terms of those four directors does
not end until a new director is elected and comes to take the seat.
Thus, if there is no future election those four directors will sit
potentially forever.]

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