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Statement by Holly Raiche
The impetus for the current RAA negotiations was a cross constituency group with its members representing registrars, registries, the business constituency and users. And we heard from the Law Enforcement Agencies and the GAC as well. It was an excellent example of the multi-stakeholder model, making recommendations for the benefit of the whole community.Yet the language now is of ‘the GNSO working group - as if that is everyone who was there, addressing law enforcement agency recommendations - as if that is all that was said. The issues being discussed are confined to 12 of the issues raised by the law enforcement agencies. And while ALAC will be commenting on those issues, the issues raised by the original group went much broader - and should still be on the agenda. And the only two parties to the current negotiations are ICANN and the registrars. In fact, however, the affected parties are more than just the registrars and ICANN corporate. As the AoC reminds us all, ICANN’s mission is for the benefit of global Internet users
Statement by Carlton Samuels
My name is Carlton Samuels. I'm vice chair of the ALAC. I'm want to say what I'm going to read here forward is not a formal statement of the ALAC, but it represents the sentiments of the at-large community at least in our estimation.
The At-Large community notes with concern ICANN's challenges regarding the safe processing of hundreds and hundreds of gTLD applications. Generally, there's not much interest by the end user community in how all these applications are prioritized with three exceptions. We note the small number of IDN TLD applications and request these be placed at the top of whatever evaluation processing mechanism, if any, is eventually chosen. Having more IDNs, to us, is a critical improvement to the name space that needs to happen as soon as possible.
We also request expedited treatments for applications that qualify for applicant support as well as those originating from emerging markets and developing economies as they demonstrate both community relevance, geographic diversity, and, yes, it would be a demonstration of commitment to globalization. Thank you.
Statement by Evan Leibovitch
Hi there. I'm Evan Leibovitch. I'm the other vice chair of ALAC. And, like Carlton's, this is not a formally endorsed statement of ALAC. But it a consensus of the people around the table and, in fact, a good bit of the wording isn't all mine.
At-Large participants at this meeting have been extremely disappointed with the response we've received to our concerns about ICANN contractual breaches despite two meetings we've held this week. We've submitted numerous well-documented examples of identified breaches that have either been closed prematurely or improperly handled. The answers we received to these and other matters were incomplete, contradictory, and in some cases evasive. The engagement was less than satisfactory. Our concern is enhanced by the introduction of the many hundreds of gTLDs as candidates for oversight.
On the evidence it's extremely difficult to have confidence in ICANN's ability to enforce the new gTLD contracts when it's unable to adequately enforce those for the less than two dozen gTLDs that already exist.
This is not just about contract enforcement. It's a core matter of ICANN's accountability, transparency, and public trust.
Clause 3.7.8 of the RAA, even in its proposed new form, doesn't and cannot enable sufficient contract enforcement to serve the public interest. To this end, ALAC shall be proposing its own new wording for 3.7.8.
We hasten to caution that simply throwing more bodies at compliance will not bridge gaps in public trust, especially if ICANN continues to be seen as allowing bad actors to be conducting business as usual even after being called out.
Although ICANN is not formally a capital R regulator, it needs to exercise control over its contracts comparable to that of a first class effective small R regulator. There needs to be an explicit separation between ICANN's compliance and legal departments. ICANN's current posture does no service to its public interest and raises the issue of what the organization's function and identity is, most specifically in the area of contract management. More to the point, it undermines the value of the compliance department. This is a critical corporate governance and AoC issue and must be addressed.
On a personal note I want to make a point of saying this is not about Maguy. This is not about the people in the department. It's a systematic problem. It's deeper than that.