[ga] GA summary 2002-10
This summary covers the DNSO GA mailing list's (and related)
discussions and news between March 13, 2002, and March 20, 2002.
GA list archives are available online at
feel free to forward this summary as you believe to be appropriate.
Note that, once again, no claims of completeness of this summary are
made. A lot was said during the time covered, and a lot of this is
left out of this summary. However, I hope that this summary can
provide readers with a helpful collection of starting points for
their own reading of the list archives. If you believe that I
missed a significant position or sub-thread, please don't hesitate
to follow up with your own summary of that.
The posting rights of Jeff Williams <email@example.com> have
been suspended by the list monitor for eight weeks because of
repeated violation of the list rules; the suspension was announced
on Monday, March 18. No appeal was received by the GA's chairman as
of today, March 21.
(i) WLS. Verisign announced the publication of a collection of
comments received regarding the WLS proposal at
<http://www.verisign-grs.com/wls.html>. At the point of time at
which this announcement was made, the registrars' constituency had,
however, not yet submitted its commentary.
They submitted their comments (and posted them to the GA list as
well) two days later.
(ii) Verisign removing expiration dates from WHOIS data. George
Kirikos pointed out that, for the domain auction-barn.com, the whois
data as accessible at whois.networksolutions.com does not contain an
expiration date. (As of this writing, the expiration date is still
not given; T.R., 2002-03-21, 00:15 CET.)
In a follow-up, Rick Wesson pointed out that the Registrar
Accreditation Agreement _requires_ registrars to include the
expiration date in their whois database.
No explication for the lack of the information has, so far, been
provided by Verisign.
(iii) Accra meeting documents posted. The DNSO secretariat has
posted a collection of URLs and notes relating to the ICANN meetings
in Accra at
(iv) "Substance over rhetoric." ICANN's former chairman Esther Dyson
suggested that ICANN should hire GA co-chair Alexander Svensson "to
manage At-Large outreach for the next year," and offered to
contribute to the funding; her pledge is supposed to be "matched by
institutions such as Harvard's Berkman Center [...], Markle,
Bertelsmann, and the like."
This suggestion caused considerable debate on the mailing list.
During that discussion, Barbara Simons noted that "the number of
'instant' at-large members would be a six digit figure if you count
everyone who registered and five digits if you just count those who
confirmed their registration."
In her response, Esther Dyson mentioned that the ALSC had asked for
the list of at-large members, "to no avail." Asked by Barbara who
turned down the ALSC's request, Esther noted that "Denise Michel
would know the details, but it was staff (since the board did not
meet to consider the request)."
In a different branch of this thread, current ICANN chairman Vint
Cerf noted that "the resolution that implemented the ALSC proposal,
except for the election component, should be on the website
already." (It certainly is now.) Michael Froomkin commented: "Other
than that, how was the play Mrs. Lincoln?" to which Vint responded:
"Please also note the verbatim board discussion in which a number of
directors expressed the hope that elections might be possible
if/when the deficiencies documented in the ALSC report and elsewhere
can be overcome."
(v) "Discussion draft -- ICANN reorganization." Danny Younger posted
some "comments on the funding aspects of ICANN's problems."
Peter de Blanc commented that the proposal that ICANN should charge
each ccTLD $ 7,200 was "a disturbing concept," and pointed out that
some ccTLDs have few registrants (with, in part, less than 500 names
registered). "Those ccTLDs can hardly afford US $ 7,200. In fact
in one of the countries I am referring to, a special permit is
required to convert local cash to US $," Peter continued. He then
reported about a conversation with Josh Eliot, who used to "perform
the IANA function" prior to ICANN, and now works for a company which
"provides DNS as a paid service to large clients [...]. They do
this for a fee based on the number of 'DNS inquiries' they get
[...]. Josh's company gives incredible QoS (Quality of Service)
level guarantees," Peter writes. With root server operations in
mind, he suggests that it "will be interesting to see what fees
Josh's company will charge."
Another note by Danny, stating that "perhaps we can obtain necessary
funding without the need to actually seat governments on the board
of ICANN," provoked a response from Vint Cerf, who stated that "the
proposal that Stuart made would not put government employees on the
board but would offer governments an opportunity to choose among a
slate of candidates developed by a nominating committee." To this,
Jon Weinberg responded that the proposal as published leaves the
nomination process of board members to the governments. Vint
replied that his statement reflects "the evolution of thinking since
January 24." "The nominations process was one area that Stuart left
kind of loose, not knowing what he might hear from the GAC," Vint
James Love suggested a "much different model for the governments"
than the one imagined by Vint: "Giving (some) governments a direct
role [...] will blur issues such as the legal authority of the
entity and its accountability to the public." Also, Jamie asks,
"what are you going to tell China?" In his reply, Vint conceded that
"you may well be right that this won't work - which is one of the
reasons we have asked the GAC to respond with its own ideas." Jamie
then focused on the model of public-private partnerships used by
Stuart Lynn, and commented that the structure suggested by the Lynn
proposal "is pretty much the worst way to structure this."
(vi) "Motion for a vote of no confidence in the Board." Danny
Younger proposed a "vote of no confidence in the board."
In the subsequent debate, some agreed, some didn't.
Mike Roberts (ICANN's former president and CEO) pointed out that he
doesn't "detect support for the Lynn plan from any significant
stakeholder group thus far." The "Board has bent over backward not
to endorse the plan," he notes. With respect to director
representation and accountability, he notes that there are "three
years of experience in which nomination, selection and seating of
the Directors from the names, protocols and address areas has
functioned better than one might expect." "Let's not be in a rush to
jettison structures that are getting the job done, especially those,
such as the DNSO, that are showing considerable recent improvement
in quality and process," he writes. Concerning at-large elections,
he notes that the board "left a door open for an initiative." He
then goes on to comment on various points of the Lynn proposal, and
opinions raised in the recent debate. I suggest you just read these
comments in Mike's own words.
Thomas Roessler http://log.does-not-exist.org/
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