[At-Large] "Business" users (was Re: FW: Our choice for the ICANN Board)

Evan Leibovitch evan at telly.org
Sun Nov 28 06:19:24 UTC 2010

On 27 November 2010 18:56, Karl Auerbach <karl at cavebear.com> wrote:

> On 11/27/2010 02:11 PM, Evan Leibovitch wrote:
> > IMO we need to acknowledge that At-Large means essentially everyone who
> is
> > *not* a contracted party.
> In the At-Large review report (from which the director seat being filled
> emerged) we took an even more expansive view - that the at-large
> consists of people (natural persons as opposed to legal fictions such as
> corporations) who are affected by the internet.

This is true, but the infrastructure requirement of the ALS in most regions
means that at least structurally, those legal fictions have a core role.
Whether NGO, trade union. board of trade, professional society, computer
club, or something else ... such aggregators of people are a core component
of the chain used to (in theory) pass information down and policy up.

> That definition leaves only an diminishing population outside the scope of
> the at-large.

Indeed. One remaining question I have in this regard is: where do
registrants fit in?

Many individuals are registrants, as are many "legal fictions". They
participate in the ICANN food chain at the bottom, the primary direct source
of revenue that drives and funds the activities of contracted parties and
ICANN itself. They are directly impacted by the RAA, Vertical Integration,
PEDNR, trademark policies and the diversity of TLD choices. They are
simultaneously consumers (as in, these are the purchasers of domains) and
suppliers (by using these domains to supply information, sell things and
present advertising to non-registrant end-users). And they also include
domainers, a sub-category that treats domains not as identity but as mere
commodity who arguably profit from ICANN policy by creating artificial
scarcity but without adding any value.

I often wonder if registrants are sufficiently represented in ICANN as
stakeholders that may have a slightly different agenda. Were the BC and NCUC
supposed to be the soapboxes for registrants? The makeup and agendas of
these constituencies (as I understand them) don't always fit those roles.

So I ask: Is At-Large charged with the task of represent the interest of
registrants, the tiny proportion of the public at large that owns domains?
Is that to be found in the "User House" of GNSO? Is the registrant lost in
the gap between registrar and end-user? If so, how can this be fixed?

- Evan

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