[ALAC] Consensus Call: ALAC Statement on the Policy & Implementation Bylaws

Alan Greenberg alan.greenberg at mcgill.ca
Wed Sep 16 02:46:43 UTC 2015

At our ALAC meeting, I was requested to draft and submit a statement 
on the Policy & Implementation Bylaws to be ratified by the Board. As 
requested, the statement sends exactly the same message has we have 
send to the two previous public comments the WG Recommendations. 
Specifically we have concerns about whether the GNSO can properly 
defend user and public interest if and when it may conflict with 
contracted party needs, and we have concerns that implementation of 
complex issues may take very long if there are multiple needs to 
revert to the GNSO for additional deliberations.

Given the late timing of this statement, I asked that it be reviewed 
by those in At-Large most deeply involved in the process.

Since we are supporting the recommended changes, but have concerns 
about the long-term implications, the statement take the form of 
formal advise to the Board that both of these concerns is that both 
issues be monitored to detect any negative implications.

The statement is appended below.

With this message, I am issuing a Consensus Call on this statement to 
end at 23:59 on Friday, 18 September 2015 at 23:59 UTC. In the 
absence of significant opposition, this statement will be deemed to 
be ratified.



ALAC and At-Large representatives were very active in the Policy and 
Implementation Working Group and the ALAC supports the recommendations.

The ALAC nonetheless has two concerns that have been raised 
throughout the WG processes.

1. GNSO processes allow participation from all communities, and so in 
theory can equitably balance all issues. However, given that 
contracted parties can be greatly impacted by GNSO policy decision 
outcomes, they have strong motivation to actively participate in 
policy development working groups, and are often well funded to do 
so. Those representing users and the public interest such as At-Large 
or non-commercial users' constituencies are less able to participate 
on the same level. Accordingly, it is possible for WG participation 
to be unbalanced. Moreover, within the GNSO Council, the Contracted 
House Stakeholder Groups acting in unison can block a super-majority 
approval of any prospective recommendation. As a result, the ALAC has 
concerns that if an issue were to arise where the public interest and 
the needs of users is in conflict with the needs of contracted 
parties, the GNSO may not be able to arrive at an equitable solution.

2. Although the principle of referring all policy-like issues 
encountered during implementation back to the GNSO for resolution 
supports the concept of the GNSO being the sole gTLD policy body, the 
ALAC is concerned that for complex implementations such as the new 
gTLD process and future directory services solutions, the number of 
such referrals may unreasonably elongate the overall implementation process.

As stated above, the ALAC supports the recommended processes, but 
Advises the Board to carefully monitor both issues to ensure that 
user and public interests are appropriately considered and that the 
implementation of complex policy can be accomplished in reasonable time-frames.

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