[At-Large] ICANN's response to IANA Transition negative propaganda

Alberto Soto asoto at ibero-americano.org
Fri Sep 9 20:49:22 UTC 2016

I agree. In the week before the event Montevideo, we suggested us not to talk of "Internet Governance", because ordinary people do not understand.





De: at-large-bounces at atlarge-lists.icann.org [mailto:at-large-bounces at atlarge-lists.icann.org] En nombre de Evan Leibovitch
Enviado el: viernes, 09 de septiembre de 2016 05:25 p.m.
Para: Alan Greenberg <alan.greenberg at mcgill.ca>
CC: At-Large Worldwide <at-large at atlarge-lists.icann.org>
Asunto: Re: [At-Large] ICANN's response to IANA Transition negative propaganda


Thanks for the link, Alan. Unfortunately, it's not just the banner that's bland; this is utterly useless.


First, it uses mushy, ill-defined elite-targeted language, starting with the title. What the heck is "stewardship"? ICANN already has a Board that provided the stewardship (ie, develop mission and hires staff to execute). That Board is not going away.


This whole mess is about transition of OVERSIGHT: who watches the asylum to ensure that the inmates don't cause public harm?


In any case, the moment you use the term "Internet governance", you've already lost any reader who doesn't already know what's going on. This is more of the same old stuff, written in the same language to the same audience for which ICANN has always written. Apparently now run by its legal department, ICANN appears culturally incapable of using street language to even describe what it does (while its opponents, adept at opinion manipulation, have found ICANN to be a very "soft target" in this regard).


And finally, the FAQ format itself is a decade too late. At this point there are opinions to be changed and myths to be busted, but no longer do people have questions to be answered. As Alan says, there is negative propaganda to be countered, but we're well past the time at which ICANN was able to have any control over the story.


ICANN is beyond merely needing to be informative. It must, to use the military terminology, "win hearts and minds" of those who care about how the Internet is run. This meek attempt at an FAQ wasn't worth the effort. If ever ICANN had an advertising budget, now would be the time to use it -- but not using THIS response. 


- Evan



PS: if this response comes across as somewhat bitter as well as just critical, there is a reason. ICANN has always had(*) a massive problem communicating with the world-at-large. Yet its own community that (does its best to) speak for that community WAS NEVER CONSULTED before these miserable attempts at communications were done. I'm complaining after the fact because our community was never asked for feedback before this heap of garbage was published. What is supposed to be ICANN's great advantage (multi-stakeholderism) turns out to be a weakness because ICANN is completely out of touch with that portion of the stakeholders who don't earn it money.


(*) ICANN briefly had the capacity to fix this, but after a brief flirtation with sanity let go the one staffer who had both the ability and the initiative in this field.



On 9 September 2016 at 20:53, Alan Greenberg <alan.greenberg at mcgill.ca <mailto:alan.greenberg at mcgill.ca> > wrote:

ICANN has finally attempted a response to the negative transition propaganda:

https://www.icann.org/iana-stewardship-questions, linked from a rather bland banner on the ICANN home page.

El software de antivirus Avast ha analizado este correo electrónico en busca de virus.
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