No.RecommendationRecipientThematic Group SourceAssigneesStatus
34In collaboration with the global Internet user community, the ALAC shall reiterate the link between the fundamental rights of Internet users, and the Public Interest.ALACTG5
  • ALAC



Implementation Details

ICANN’s Development and Public Responsibility Department has led an ICANN-wide discussion on the topic of “public interest within ICANN’s remit” and the potential definitions of this term. In this discussion, the At-Large Community has been a strong voice in urging stakeholders to work together and form a comprehensive vision on the Internet that addresses public interests and the protection of civil liberties. Specifically, EURALO has advocated for related principles such as Open Access, Free Software, and Creative Commons since its inception. Its leaders presented the thesis paper on public interest during the EURALO General Assembly in ICANN53 and led the creation of the At-Large Public Interest Working Group. The recent focus of the Working Group is to develop a proposal entitled “Creating A Consumer Agenda at ICANN”, which addresses the restructuring of ICANN's Contractual Compliance department, reviews of the actual use of the DNS, and communications of ICANN policy to end users. The proposal will be presented to the ICANN Board in ICANN57.

One sub-topic of public interest that At-Large has been closely monitoring is the Public Interest Commitments (PICs), especially pertaining to the Category 1 TLDs related to sensitive strings as defined by the GAC, such as .doctor and .bank. After the 2nd At-Large Summit, the ALAC submitted 3 formal advice statements to the ICANN Board with regard to PICs. The ALAC also met with the Board New gTLD Process Committee, ICANN Contractual Compliance department, registry representatives, Business Constituency, and the GAC about this issue. These efforts have resulted in the successful inclusion of the review of PICs/Safeguard issues in the GNSO New gTLD Subsequent Procedures PDP Working Group, which has many active At-Large participants.

Furthermore, the CCWG-Accountability Work Stream 2 Human Rights SubGroup and the CCWP-Human Rights are in process developing a Framework of Interpretation on Human Rights (FOI-HR) in ICANN’s context. At-Large members have also been playing an active role in these groups. The work outcome will help clarify the linkage between the broader, fundamental rights of Internet users and the public interest.

Next Step

At-Large members will continue contributing to the work in the aforementioned groups and initiatives that aim to clarify the definition of public interest, the interpretation of human rights, and the linkage between these two in ICANN’s context.



  • Ariel Liang to check with Leon Sanchez/ Grace Abuhamad whether public responsibilities and public interest will be included in CCWG-Accountability WS2


  • To be discussed in the near future
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