[At-Large] Msgs on GNSO Council list regarding Friday Board meeting

Alan Greenberg alan.greenberg at mcgill.ca
Mon May 7 01:07:12 UTC 2012

The following two messages from the GNSO Council 
list address some of the concerns that have been 
raised with regard to the cancellation of the 
regular Friday Board meeting. Too bad some of 
this was not included in the original announcement.



>De : Steve Crocker <<mailto:steve at shinkuro.com>steve at shinkuro.com>
>Objet : Rép : SO and AC plenary time at ICANN meetings
>Date : 4 mai 2012 14:49:44 HAEC
>À : Stéphane Van Gelder 
><<mailto:stephane.vangelder at indom.com>stephane.vangelder at indom.com>
>Thanks for your thoughtful note.  We're 
>gathering inputs, getting the Prague meeting 
>organized and will be sending at least one 
>additional note to the community to cover these items.
>The Friday Board meetings had been very lightly 
>attended and didn't really provide either 
>insight on the Board's thinking or opportunity 
>for the community to interact with the 
>Board.  The other parts of the Friday schedule, 
>reports from the Board committees and reports 
>from the SO and AC chairs do provide a little 
>bit of room for interaction, mostly around the 
>SO and AC chair reports.  I think that's 
>something we want to make sure continues in some 
>fashion, and we will weave this into the overall 
>schedule.  We will also allocate time for 
>interaction with the Board during the Thursday afternoon session.
>Once in while there are Board actions that have 
>some content and even a bit of drama.  The XXX 
>decision in San Francisco and the decision in 
>Singapore to move forward with the gTLD program 
>are the two recent examples that come to 
>mind.  For matters of this import, we will have 
>a public Board meeting.  In Singapore, we did 
>this at the beginning of the week.  This was a 
>big improvement and really helped set a positive 
>tone for the entire week.  I think this is a 
>good pattern, and I'm inclined to follow this 
>when it's needed.  I don't know how often we'll 
>have to do this; I suspect it will be less than half the time.
>Another element in our thinking is that it's 
>usually inappropriate to rush through a 
>resolution at the end of the week based on 
>developments during the week.  We need to take 
>some time to develop the proper 
>documentation.  So, instead of trying to cap the 
>week off with resolutions passed on the basis of 
>the week's work, we will report on what's come 
>up during the week, what happened between the 
>last ICANN meeting and this one, and what we 
>plan to do following this ICANN meeting.
>I look forward to inputs from you and the other chairs of the SOs and ACs.
>Finally, we'll work hard to get this right by 
>Prague, but if what we do in Prague is not good 
>enough, we'll keep working on it.

>From: Bruce Tonkin <Bruce.Tonkin at melbourneit.com.au>
>To: Council GNSO <council at gnso.icann.org>
>Subject: [council] Regarding improvements in Board processes
>Date: Sun, 6 May 2012 18:05:40 +0000
>Hello All,
>I have been reading the various comments about 
>the announcement on 30 April 2012 that there 
>will not be a public board meeting on Friday 29 June in Prague.
>I thought I would set out various improvements 
>being made in Board processes to set this in context.
>(1) In the past, the Board has typically worked 
>with staff until midnight, and in some cases 
>2am, on the Thursday before the public session 
>to prepare resolutions for voting.    This is 
>after a busy week listening to feedback from the 
>community, and the end result is often Board 
>resolutions that are poorly crafted and create problems in future.
>(2) For Prague, the intent is that the Board 
>will focus on listening to the community, and 
>then give the community some idea of what future 
>resolutions will be voted on in response to 
>feedback.  A board meeting will then be held 
>shortly after Prague to approve those resolutions.
>(3) An example of this approach was on the topic 
>of Conflicts of interest in Dakar in October 
>2011.   The Board listened to the community 
>during the week, and then in the public session 
>on conflicts Board members gave some feedback to 
>the community on specific measures that would be 
>taken with respect to new gTLDs.   After careful 
>review by the legal team, and review by Board 
>members, the Board held a meeting on 8 Dec 2011 
>- where a resolution was passed on managing 
>conflicts for new gTLDs, along with other 
>resolutions that resulted from the discussions in Dakar.
>(4)  The Board has also been working to ensure 
>that most resolutions at the Board level are 
>relatively routine.   This means that bodies 
>like the GNSO have already reached consensus on 
>a topic (e.g the recent work on the transfers 
>policy), or staff have managed a public comment 
>process on a topic - and there are no 
>controversies associated with the matter.    For 
>such routine resolutions - we either have a 
>short teleconference or we take advantage of 
>face-to-face time at a Board workshop to pass 
>these resolutions.  For example, at the Board 
>workshop just concluded in Amsterdam we had a 
>short Board meeting to pass mostly consent 
>resolutions.    It is likely that in Prague we 
>will pass resolutions on routine matters in the 
>Board workshop on the weekend of 23/24 June - if 
>there are matters submitted by staff for 
>approval - and can report on them during the 
>public meetings.   If there are controversies on 
>a matter, the general approach would be to seek 
>to return the matter to the relevant body or 
>bodies to reach a stronger consensus.    Thus 
>you will see fewer matters that are not on the 
>consent agenda at Board meetings.
>(5) Where there is a major policy vote, or where 
>there are differing views on a major policy, the 
>Board will continue to schedule such discussions 
>for the public meetings.   Past examples of such 
>matters include the .xxx decision and the 
>approval of the new gTLD program in Singapore in June 2011.
>(6) With respect to transparency. the Board has 
>been publishing rationales for each of its 
>decisions - including those on the consent 
>agenda.  There are also detailed minutes of 
>meetings, where contributions from Board members 
>made during a Board meeting are captured.
>For example, from the minutes of the meeting on 
>8 Dec 2011 
>there is a detailed record of the discussion on 
>conflicts as well as on batching.
>(7) We are still refining improvements and 
>certainly welcome feedback from the community.
>Feel free to get in touch with me if you have 
>any questions or concerns, and certainly feel 
>free to provide feedback to the Board in the Board/GNSO meeting in Prague.
>Also be aware that I continue to read emails on 
>this list, and I pass on examples of emails that 
>raise concerns about Board processes to the 
>Board list to keep the Board aware as well.
>Bruce Tonkin

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