DRAFT version 6
Highlighted items are under review.
Scope and mission of ICANN
In broad terms the Names Council (NC) agreed with the factual description of ICANN's functions listed in "What ICANN Does" at: http://www.icann.org/general/toward-mission-statement-07mar02.htm which (in summary) cover:
1. General operational functions (such as IP
address allocation, maintaining the DNS root zone file).
2. gTLD administrative functions (such as registrar accreditation, supervising the Uniform Dispute Resolution Policy, determining the process for new gTLDs).
3. ccTLD administrative functions (such as updating the IANA database entries concerning ccTLD Managers, or requests for delegation and re-delegation).
4. Policy coordination for infrastructure security.
5. Policy-related functions including:
5.1. IP address and AS number allocation,
5.2 ccTLD global policy coordination,
5.3. Protocol numbering via the IANA registries,
5.4 gTLD registry-level policies.
Recommendation 1 - mission. The Names Council proposes the following re-statement of ICANN's mission:
"ICANN's mission is to coordinate technical and policy functions of the domain name system in order to promote a stable, secure and commercially viable domain name system, promote competition in key aspects of the DNS, and achieve broad representation of global Internet communities, all for the benefit of the users of the global Internet."
The Names Council specified the following existing functions of ICANN where the NC notes that improvements and enhancements in delivery of services or improvements in relationships are needed:
- ccTLD administrative functions
- root server administration
- Registry and Registrar contract enforcement e.g. escrow,† the UDRP and WhoIs.
Recommendation 2 - structure. Create clearly delineated divisions within and under ICANN responsible for the administration of† operational and policy functions. This would establish separate staff functions for policy and operational functions but maintain a clear authority within ICANN management for all such functions.
Some of the Names Council† noted that the greatest potential for mission creep lay in the areas of additional security and additional consumer protection. The Names Council recognised that the functions expected of ICANN as viewed today may, be different in a changed world of tomorrow. That future world may dictate that ICANN's functions are more, or are fewer, than those today. Focus of the core functions of the moment will be a key to success.
Recommendation 3 - functions. ICANN's functions should not be extended at this time beyond what is outlined in the note "What ICANN Does" .
The NC believes that the debate over the longer term funding of ICANN should not be distracted by any short term funding problem.
Recommendation 4 - short-term funding. The NC urges the existing funders to reach at least interim agreements quickly to avoid any short fall in ICANN's existing budget.
Recommendation 5 - core funding. Funding could potentially come from more than one source but the bulk of funds should ultimately derive from the revenues of gTLD Registrants' fees and be administered via Registrars and/or Registries.
Recommendation 6 - secondary sources. Secondary sources should include the ccTLDs and RIRs, but should not include governments.
(Consideration should be given to the relevance of ccTLDs which are marketed in non-geographic ways to recommendations 5 and 6).
Recommendation 7 - supplementary sources. Supplementary sources could be found from sources such as secretariat service fees to the GAC.
Recommendation 8 - budgeting. Further to recommendation 2, ICANN budgeting should reflect a delineated structure.
Advisory Bodies and Policy Development
Recommendation 9 - policy making. ICANN policy advisory bodies should formulate policy recommendations based on a bottom-up, consensus process of all stakeholders.
Recommendation 10 - impact. The policy recommendations from such policy advisory bodies should be ordinarily binding on the ICANN Board and ICANN entities, but with rejection possible subject to a 2/3 Board majority.
Recommendation 11 - staff support. ICANNís policy advisory bodies should be made more effective by the provision of full-time staff to support all aspects of policy making including a co-ordinating secretariat and staff support to policy-making task forces and similar groups.
Recommendation 12 - ccTLDs. Create a new advisory body for the ccTLDs. This would need means of collaborative decision making with the gTLD advisory body on relevant areas of policy.
Recommendation 13 - gTLDs:† Create a new advisory body for gTLDs, which should cover essentially the policy role to date of the DNSO.†
The following recommendations are intended as discussion points before our next call (April 24) and based on the agenda items of the April 18 call.
- The chairs of the advisory bodies should be members of the Board.
- The advisory bodies should elect in addition a fixed number of Board members. The number of members need not necessarily be the same for each advisory body.
- The Board should be set at a size that makes it workable without the need for a smaller executive committee. This means it should have fewer members than at present.
- Any nominating committee should only have the power to nominate one third or fewer of the Board seats or any other ICANN entity.
- Create an ombudsman to handle allegations of unfairness, exclusion from participation and ICANN ineffectiveness.