[ALAC] ALS certification and decertification votes

Alan Greenberg alan.greenberg at mcgill.ca
Thu Oct 2 22:09:09 UTC 2014

Thanks Tijani,

Your missing the last call is not important in 
respect to this discussion, since it quickly 
became obvious that it was a more complex 
decsision than we thought and that is why I raised it here.

As Evan has said, this becomes relevant in only a 
very few certification votes, and even fewer of 
those might be contested - I can recall only a couple in my time on the ALAC.

If there is strong support for your position, 
then we will have to go to ICANN Legal Counsel 
and the Ombudsman to see whether they believe we 
could do such a vote and not be able to later 
understand why the decision was made.

Ultimately, although we want to be diligent and 
make the right decision with respect to each ALS 
application, we can only go so far.

If we cannot trust the staff and Chair to handle 
delicate issues, then we are already in big trouble.


At 02/10/2014 04:51 PM, Tijani BENJEMAA wrote:
>Dear Alan,
>Unfortunately, I didn’t attend the last ALAC 
>call. I do appreciate that this issue was brought to the table.
>I do think that the ALS certification and 
>decertification votes should be conducted as 
>confidential votes to avoid any tension or 
>harassment. Even staff and the ALAC chair 
>shouldn’t know how ALAC Members voted. We may 
>ask voters to give the rational of their vote, but anonymously.
>My fear is that when the ALAC members cast their 
>votes knowing that there will be someone (staff 
>and ALAC Chair) who will see how they voted, 
>they will not vote according to their 
>conscience, they will modulate their choice 
>according the relationship they think staff 
>members and ALAC Chair have with the concerned ALS.
>Executive Director
>Mediterranean Federation of Internet Associations (FMAI)
>Phone:  + 216 41 649 605
>Mobile: + 216 98 330 114
>Fax:       + 216 70 853 376
>-----Message d'origine-----
>De : alac-bounces at atlarge-lists.icann.org 
>[mailto:alac-bounces at atlarge-lists.icann.org] De la part de Alan Greenberg
>Envoyé : jeudi 2 octobre 2014 14:37
>Objet : [ALAC] ALS certification and decertification votes
>On our last ALAC call, Olivier brought up the subject of whether ALS
>certification and decertification votes should use secret ballots
>(such as we used for personnel votes) or not, and it was decided to
>discuss the issue on the mailing list.
>The history is that most ALAC votes are open and it is disclosed who
>voted which way, with the exception of personnel votes and others
>that the ALAC explicitly decides should be secret. We have made such
>a decision of rare occasions. The only example I can recall is when
>we voted on whether to file objections to the .health new TLDs and we
>did so to avoid any harassment of ALAC members who voted for such objections.
>A couple of years ago, a change was made to certification and
>decertification votes to change them from open to closed because of
>one or more objections filed by applicants. There is also a concern
>that a rejected application could lead to harassment of those who
>rejected it, and a concern that people might not vote honestly if the
>result was public (similar to the reason for secret ballots on
>personnel votes).
>I think that this concern should be considered.
>However, under our rules and the ICANN Bylaws, ALS certification and
>decertification decisions may be appealed to the Board. As such, we
>should be in a position to explain why a decision was made.
>Accordingly I offer the following proposal.
>ALS certification votes shall be conducted in such a way that there
>will be no public disclosure of how ALAC Members voted. However, the
>details of how ALAC Members voted will be available to ICANN At-Large
>staff and the ALAC Chair to allow them to conduct private interviews
>with voters to be able to put together a rationale for why any
>particular decision was made.
>ALAC mailing list
>ALAC at atlarge-lists.icann.org
>At-Large Online: http://www.atlarge.icann.org
>ALAC Working Wiki: 
>Ce courrier électronique ne contient aucun virus 
>ou logiciel malveillant parce que la protection 
><http://www.avast.com/>Antivirus avast! est active.

More information about the ALAC mailing list