[ALAC] ALS certification and decertification votes

Tijani BEN JEMAA tijani.benjemaa at planet.tn
Fri Oct 3 09:44:59 UTC 2014

Good morning Alan,


First of all, I changed my position regarding the decertification: I do
agree with Sala that for decertification, a 100% transparency is needed, so
I think now that the vote for decertification should be completely open.


As for the certification, and as you know Alan, we faced problems with some
(yes very few) cases where the RALO was divided in 2 parts with 2 different
approaches, and 2 almost equal groups. To be with this group or the other
can destroy our relationship with part of the RALO and minimize the level of
trust. I think we have to be careful.


You spoke about trust in the staff and the ALAC Chair; it is not about trust
at all. It’s more psychological and it may make some members change their
choice because they know it will be known by someone. This is the risk. As
for my case, I don’t mind if my vote is known and I will not change it in
any case, but it is not the case for everyone. 




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 23:09
À : tijani.benjemaa at topnet.tn; 'ALAC'
Objet : Re: [ALAC] ALS certification and decertification votes


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


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


>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.







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