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Re: [registrars] ICANN Task Force on Funding Update

Hello all,

I was very pleasantly surprised to see the increase in traffic
on this list :-)  Just a couple comments to Richard's original

> On a personal note, I believe that a variable cost allocation method
> (e.g., $1 fee per domain name) will continue to promote the taxation
> debate.  This is not just a US issue.  The European Union will not stand
> for anything that smells like a tax. Therefore, I am strongly in favor
> of finding a solution to the ICANN funding debate.

Without some changes, I agree the per domain fee would generate
the domain "tax" debate.

> Specific issues that are now on the table include:
> A) Should all ICANN constituencies contribute to the ICANN budget?

I think is is uncontroversial that all portions of the Supporting
Organizations, and in the DNSO, this would include all the
constituencies, should contribute to the ICANN budget.  So
as Amadeu correctly points out, this would include the ASO
and PSO.  I think the sticky point would be how much the At Large
Membership should pay (probably a token fee only.)

> B) What % of the overall cost should gTLD registrars absorb?

I guess the key issue, is to what extent the gTLD registrars
should subsidize ICANN.  At a minimum, each constituency
should pay for all the costs incurred during the ICANN meetings
(so far I believe ICANN has been picking up the bill) and
other related costs.

It would be nice if all of ICANN's activities paid for themselves,
so the costs of running ICANN that have been dedicated to
the accreditation of gTLD registrars and setting up the system
would be paid by the registrars.  Unfortunately, this is not
realistic in my opinion (there are some programs that will
not be able to pay for themselves) and as fees from accredited
registrars is one tangible way to generate funding, I think it
is inevitable that we may end up subsidizing other aspects
of ICANN operations.   I am not opposed to this.

> C) Of that %, should individual registrar contributions be flat or
> tiered?  If tiered, what are the boundaries?

Here is what generated all the responses on the list :-)
I feel that the per domain fee is most fair, but then we get
into the "tax" issue again, so I think some system of tiered
fees is one way to get out of the "tax" problems.  Then
again, income tax is graduated right?

> D) Are there other sources of funding that should be considered?

I agree that ICANN should not spend significant portions of its
budget "fund raising" as this would result in creating a larger
organization just to keep it operational.  I think eventually
contributions from ccTLD's (they all collect fees too!) is
another option, and obviously a portion of administrative
fees from  IP address registries can be passed on to ICANN
as well.

> ICANN will be posting the minutes from our first meeting on the ICANN
> web site shortly.  I will also keep you updated on any new
> developments.  Please let me know if you have any questions or comments.

Thanks for keeping us up to date.  We are all very interested
in what will actually result from the task force.

Richard - the other one :-)
_/_/_/interQ Incorporated
_/_/_/System Division
_/_/_/Director and General Manager
_/_/_/Richard A. S. Lindsay