[NA-Discuss] Inclusion of Individual Internet Users within the City-TLD Multistakeholder Governance Environment

Alan Greenberg alan.greenberg at mcgill.ca
Tue Jun 14 02:55:35 UTC 2016


If there were a ground swell of support for the 
concept that a geographic TLD must consult (or 
listen to) citizens on its geographic region, 
then the ALAC could certainly advise that this 
would be included if and when there are any new 
geographic TLDs are allocated. I have little 
confidence that this is something that would be 
accepted by ICANN, as it only allocates the TLD 
and according to its mission has little to do 
with how it is run. One exception is that if a 
commitment to do something (or not do something) 
is in the TLD contract, then ICANN may be in a 
position to ensure that the contract is honoured.

Even if ICANN would accept such a requirement to 
specify how geographic TLDs are managed, it would 
not change .nyc as the contracts are already 
signed and the only changes in this area that 
could alter the contract would be those 
voluntarily added by the City of New York.

If you want to accomplish that, it is in New York 
that you need to be convincing people that there 
is a problem that you can help fix.


At 13/06/2016 05:44 PM, Thomas Lowenhaupt wrote:

>While I've not completed my research, your 
>conclusion seems to conform to the city's belief 
>here in New York - that it need not provide a 
>process for participation by individual Internet 
>users in shaping the use of the .nyc TLD. 
>Assuming that's the case, that there's no clear 
>responsibility on the part of ICANN or the 
>registry, what responsibility does the At-Large 
>have with regard to the needs of individual Internet users?
>To me, it would seem ALAC's role is to advise 
>ICANN, politely, that it botched things with 
>regard to city-TLDs, and to suggest a roadmap 
>for reengaging individual Internet users with the governance process.
>Are you in agreement or have I missed something?
>Tom Lowenhaupt
>On 6/13/2016 3:59 PM, Alan Greenberg wrote:
>>.paris is a community TLD, and thus subject to 
>>the control of the designated community. 
>>However, according to the TLD application, the 
>>"City of Paris" is deemed to be the 
>>representative of that community. So it is 
>>completely internal to the City of Paris how it 
>>implements any control or other input from Paris residents and businesses.
>>This, for all practical purposes, puts it in 
>>the same status as .nyc (which did not apply as 
>>a "Community" TLD. Any rules it puts in place, 
>>or does not put in place, which gives some 
>>level of control or review to NYC residents or 
>>businesses is solely up to the city administration.
>>At 12/06/2016 06:07 PM, Louis Houle wrote:
>>>Hi Tom and Alan,
>>>I read the Registry agreement - Paris and didn't find real relevant info:
>>>«7.8 No Third-Party Beneficiaries.  This 
>>>Agreement will not be construed to create any 
>>>obligation by either ICANN or Registry 
>>>Operator to any non-party to this Agreement, 
>>>including any registrar or registered name holder.
>>>Community Registration Policies
>>>Registry Operator shall implement and comply 
>>>with all community registration policies 
>>>described below and/or attached to this 
>>>Specification 12.  In the event Specification 
>>>12 conflicts with the requirements of any 
>>>other provision of the Registry Agreement, such other provision shall govern.
>>>Two types of conditions must be fulfilled for 
>>>the right to register a TLD name. These 
>>>are:  (A) community membership (bona fide 
>>>presence in the Paris area) and  (B) the additional requirements that:
>>>The presence in Paris area and use of domain 
>>>are generally accepted as legitimate.
>>>The presence in Paris area and use of domain 
>>>are conducive to welfare of the Paris area.»
>>>Goog evening
>>>Louis Houle
>>>ISOC Quebec
>>><mailto:Louis.Houle at isoc.quebec>Louis.Houle at isoc.quebec
>>>Le 2016-05-13 à 16:40, Alan Greenberg a écrit :
>>>>As a first step, perhaps you should look at 
>>>>all of the application forms and registry 
>>>>agreements, particularly for those that are 
>>>>Community TLDs, and see what they committed to.
>>>>Sent from my mobile. Please excuse brevity and typos.
>>>>On May 13, 2016 4:16:47 PM EDT, Thomas 
>>>>Lowenhaupt <mailto:toml at communisphere.com><toml at communisphere.com> wrote:
>>>>It certainly would be good to know the level 
>>>>of engagement for IIUs in Paris and the other 
>>>>newly TLD'd cities. Perhaps the At-Large 
>>>>could craft a questionnaire to gather the 
>>>>state of affairs, to be distributed as widely 
>>>>as practicable. Certainly one might imagine 
>>>>excellent penetration in those cities with 
>>>>ALSes. From there we might develop a report of use to many.
>>>>What's the best tool for creating a 
>>>>questionnaire these days? 
>>>>seems to be priced right? Anyone with 
>>>>experience in this area? Is there a better 
>>>>alternative? Are there others in the ICANN 
>>>>community that might be interested in a project of this sort?
>>>>Tom Lowenhaupt
>>>>On 5/13/2016 2:51 PM, Louis Houle wrote:
>>>>>Hi Tom,
>>>>>Why is the situation rather opaque in .NYC. 
>>>>>Because inclusiveness is not promoted ? 
>>>>>Because transparency is not an integrated 
>>>>>process in the pratices of the management 
>>>>>team (the meetings are held behind closed doors? )
>>>>>Governments obey to a set of rules and 
>>>>>processes that they control. This includes 
>>>>>the input or contribution from third parties 
>>>>>regarding the direction to follow the 
>>>>>management approach, etc. I understand that 
>>>>>this the situation that you're cought with.
>>>>>Your suggestion to get ICANN on board is 
>>>>>certainly appropriate. Is it the only 
>>>>>approach for you to advocate for a 
>>>>>governance process for NYC? I don't know if 
>>>>>other city TLD are facing a similar 
>>>>>situation as the one you described. For 
>>>>>instance, Dot-Paris is managed by the city 
>>>>>under the authority of the mayer. Would it 
>>>>>be useful to document how they address 
>>>>>governance issues including the 
>>>>>multistakeholder model ? Would it be useful 
>>>>>to get the GeoTLD Interest Group on board also?
>>>>>At Dot-Quebec, the Board adopted a very 
>>>>>openned governance approach. Anybody who can 
>>>>>contribute is welcome, but it's a 
>>>>>not-for-profit organisation. It's not lead 
>>>>>by the government even though we received a 
>>>>>financial and political support for the 
>>>>>project. We support the multistakeholder 
>>>>>model but for the new members of the Board, 
>>>>>it needs to be explained. We have people 
>>>>>with various and strong CV, but mostly no 
>>>>>ICANN experience for some of them. Knowledge 
>>>>>sharing is useful then, but it is still 
>>>>>necessary to have a partner who is willing to listen.
>>>>>Louis Houle
>>>>>ISOC Quebec
>>>>><mailto:Louis.Houle at isoc.quebec>Louis.Houle at isoc.quebec
>>>>>Le 2016-05-12 12:49, Thomas Lowenhaupt a écrit :
>>>>>>In response to my post contending that the 
>>>>>>multistakeholder model was not effectively 
>>>>>>meeting the needs of individual Internet 
>>>>>>users (IIUs) in New York City you said:
>>>>>>    * "​But are we? ALS's and individuals 
>>>>>> can join RALOs, who in turn can influence 
>>>>>> the ALAC, who advise the ICANN board."
>>>>That's correct. And that's what I'm doing right now.
>>>>    * "Or do you mean locally? Well, we elect 
>>>> our representatives on the NYC City Council, 
>>>> who are subject to their constituents, at 
>>>> least in theory." Following that line of 
>>>> thought we really don't need a city council 
>>>> or mayor at all. After all, we also have a 
>>>> democratically elected congress and 
>>>> president. Why bother with city government? 
>>>> Just call your congress member about the 
>>>> pothole, garbage pickup, or idea for a park 
>>>> improvement. And indeed you can. But my 
>>>> congress member represents about 700,000 
>>>> people and avers to the local council member 
>>>> who represents 160,000 residents. He has 
>>>> close ties, that include budgetary 
>>>> control,  with the local service providers - 
>>>> the pothole fillers, sanitation and parks 
>>>> departments. So for local service delivery 
>>>> issues it's better to go local. And in this 
>>>> instance, with .nyc, I think we have agreed 
>>>> to go down one more layer and engage the 
>>>> stakeholders in the process. And indeed, 
>>>> ICANN talks bottom-up and multistakeholder. 
>>>> Minimally, minimally, ICANN could send a 
>>>> notification to the local ALSs when a city 
>>>> registry agreement change is proposed. And 
>>>> it would seem reasonable to provide the 
>>>> opportunity for that ALS to respond, and for 
>>>> that response to be considered. One might 
>>>> argue that it is the ALS's responsibility to 
>>>> keep an eye on ICANN's activities. And 
>>>> that's a good idea. And I support and look 
>>>> forward to the day when we're provided by 
>>>> ICANN with a budget to hire a staff member 
>>>> for that task. But for now it seems ICANN's 
>>>> generating a letter about proposed changes 
>>>> to the registry agreement is the simpler way to go.
>>>>        * "There was an advisory board for 
>>>> .nyc. It hardly met, and the meetings it had 
>>>> were closed. You were on it. It could've 
>>>> done something to break its chains if the 
>>>> will was there, surely.​" As I recall the 
>>>> situation, the city created the advisory 
>>>> board under duress - there was a challenge 
>>>> to their .nyc application from 
>>>> Connecting.nyc Inc. After the .NYC Community 
>>>> Advisory Board's creation the city retained 
>>>> tight control over its operation. It 
>>>> appointed members, scheduled the meetings, 
>>>> and set the agenda. I informed media-types 
>>>> about the meetings, but they were excluded 
>>>> by the representatives of the mayor. 
>>>> Additionally, even city officials were 
>>>> excluded. Council member Gale Brewer's 
>>>> representative, whom I invited, was told to 
>>>> leave the room when he showed up. And as I 
>>>> mentioned previously, when they abolished it 
>>>> on December 31, 2014 they wiped out any sign 
>>>> of its existence from its website. But 
>>>> you're right, those chains probably could 
>>>> have been broken short of self-immolation. I 
>>>> just never figured out how. Where are we 
>>>> now? While we've taken a hit with the 
>>>> abolition of the .NYC Community Advisory 
>>>> Board, I'm still trying to get a governance 
>>>> process started where IIUs can meaningfully 
>>>> participate in a governance process. My 
>>>> latest thought is to get ICANN, via the 
>>>> ALSs, on board and advocating for a 
>>>> multistakeholder governance process, one 
>>>> that includes IIUs. Any thoughts on how to achieve this are most welcomed.
>>>>        Best,
>>>>        Tom Lowenhaupt
>>>>        On 5/12/2016 1:19 AM, Joly MacFie wrote:
>>>>>        On Thu, May 12, 2016 at 12:09 AM, 
>>>>> Thomas Lowenhaupt 
>>>>> <<mailto:toml at communisphere.com>toml at communisphere.com > wrote:
>>>>>        The point I'm trying to make is: If 
>>>>> we've all accepted the multistakeholder 
>>>>> model, how is it that the local ALSes and 
>>>>> individual Internet users (residents and 
>>>>> organizations as well) are left out of the decision making process?
>>>>>        Tom
>>>>>        ​But are we? ALS's and individuals 
>>>>> can join RALOs, who inturn can influence the ALAC, who advise the ICANN board.
>>>>>        Or do you mean locally? Well, we 
>>>>> elect our representatives on the NYC City 
>>>>> Council, who are subject to their constituents, at least in theory.
>>>>>        There was an advisory board for 
>>>>> .nyc. It hardly met, and the meetings it 
>>>>> had were closed. You were on it. It 
>>>>> could've done something to break its chains if the will was there, surely.​
>>>>>        ​j​
>>>>>        --
>>>>>        ---------------------------------------------------------------
>>>>>        Joly MacFie  218 565 9365 <Skype:punkcast>Skype:punkcast
>>>>>        --------------------------------------------------------------
>>>>>        -
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