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[nc-str] for those who might not have seen it -- recent gTLD proposal

gTLD Registry Restructuring Proposal

October 4, 2001


The gTLD Constituency believes the following principles should be kept in mind as the ICANN community considers possible restructuring options:

  1. The most important role of the Board is to recognize the existence of documented consensus supporting policies that become mandatory pursuant to established contracts with registries and registrars. The role of the Board is not to create and impose policies in a top-down fashion, much less allow anyone other than the Board to impose policies on those who have agreed to participate in and abide by the results of the ICANN consensus policy process.
  2. The Board should contain an array of "representative" voices. These voices should include Board members selected by (a) those who are bound by contract to comply with ICANN policies and (b) those predictably and substantially affected by such policies. The Board should be constructed to assure that "consensus" is truly achieved.
  3. Similarly-situated entities should be treated similarly. In particular, registries and registrars (whether gTLD or ccTLD) competing in the global marketplace should be subject to the same rules.
  4. Both commercial and noncommercial domain name registrants, who are bound by ICANN policies through contracts that flow down through registries and registrars, should have representation on the Board.
  5. If Supporting Organizations are created to reflect the views of particular groups, those SOs should be required to help bear the costs of the ICANN process (recognizing that such contributions should not create a bar to participation by particular SOs).
  6. If Supporting Organizations are created to reflect the views of particular groups, there should be some new cross-SO mechanism to facilitate inter-SO deliberation on policies that might affect various SOs and to generate documented consensus (on the basis of which the Board could take action).
  7. ICANN consensus policies imposed by contract on registries, registrars and registrants, and other substantive Board actions with policy implications, should be clearly limited as to subject matter, addressing only issues for which central and coordinated resolution is necessary to assure stable interoperability of the domain name system.
  8. The Board should remain at a reasonable size (to facilitate meaningful deliberation) and should have an odd number of members (to avoid deadlock).
  9. No substantial restructuring of the Board and/or the DNSO may or should occur without the consent of those who have contractually agreed to abide by ICANN policies established pursuant to the present structure.
  10. ccTLDs should sign contracts that require them to abide by consensus policies on issues for which central and coordinated resolution is necessary to assure stable interoperability of the domain name system.
  11. Restructuring actions designed to reflect recommendations of the At Large Study Committeee, proposed creation of a ccSO, and other proposals to reform the DNSO should all proceed at the same time and in the context of a comprehensive plan that serves the principles set forth above.



The gTLD constituency sets forth the following suggestions as a basis for further discussions:

  1. A group of Producer SOs should be created to reflect the views of those bound directly by contracts with ICANN. These SOs should include: (1) a ccTLD Registry SO, (2) a gTLD Registry SO (with separate representation for sponsored and unsponsored TLDs), and (3) a Registrar SO. (These Producers are all significantly impacted by ICANN policy decisions and also provide up to 90% of ICANN's funding at the moment.)
  2. The User community, including both commercial and noncommercial registrants of domain names, should have a role in selecting an equivalent number of Board members. Users could play this role through one or more Supporting Organizations. Two separate SOs for commercial users (including large and small businesses and trademark interests) and noncommercial users (including individuals and nonprofit organizations) could be created, each of which would select three Board members. Or the At Large SO suggested by the ALSC could be created, selecting six Board members from each of six geographic regions.
  3. Additional Board seats should be available to reflect the views of those who are not included in the previously described SOs and who are predictably likely to be substantially affected by ICANN policies. Such groups could be treated as either additional Supporting Organizations or as advisory committees, and the Board members selected might be chosen in a variety of different ways. Such groups could include ISPs and ASO and PSO members. The number of such representatives should be determined with a view towards manageability and assuring an odd number of Board members.


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