[At-Large] Following on from ATLAS for 2020

Maureen Hilyard maureen.hilyard at gmail.com
Mon Nov 18 03:53:51 UTC 2019

Dear all

I am transferring the previous Board Selection discussion introduced by
Wolfgang and continued by Natalia and Sebastian because I want to move onto
another tangent more towards where I felt the discussion was heading. I
guess this is my takeaway from ATLAS as the ALAC Chair.

I really like the suggestion that we record the history of the development
and history of At-Large and  Board seat 15 to explain how our structure and
culture evolved. Where we came from is always an interesting topic and the
videos that Jonathan shared in Montreal were a testament to where ATLAS
started and how much it has changed already since its inception. Each event
demonstrated a key focus which helped to initiate some change into the
following 5 years of At-Large and subsequent inputs into the ICANN

ATLAS III provided us with an opportunity to look at how we might operate
at ICANN, regional and community levels to deliver the vision and mission

Theoretically, we introduced many At-Large participants to how a more
efficient and effective At-Large of the future could result from the
development of more effective communicators of ICANN policy. We also
learned of the importance of why we need to operate more efficiently within
the ICANN ecosystem in  close collaboration with other core sections of the
ICANN community

ATLAS III provided us with an ideal springboard to direct more focus on
what we need to do to create an At-Large of the future that is accepted  by
other sections to be a fully contributing and valued partner within ICANN.

My view is that this must start from RALO level. But we cannot expect all
RALOs to do this in the same way. Each RALO is unique. They each have to
look at what would be effective local culturally-relevant mechanisms and
practices for their particular region that would engage more people at
community level with ICANN's vision and mission.

In order to do this, we need to ensure that RALO members have the
appropriate resources; that those who are active and capable ATLAS
Ambassadors can provide appropriate training and upskilling that will
encourage and give more confidence for other potential At-Large
participants in their regions and to interact with other ICANN participants
within their own communities - registries and registrars, registrants and
wanna-be registrants, regional I* organisations, cctld managers, government
officials - to help build a more united ICANN of the future, starting at
grassroots level.

This may need the development of more national SIGs - Schools of ICANN
governance. In fact, innovative and active ALSes whose own missions could
easily incorporate such a focus could become the national hubs for these
developments. Perhaps this could develop into an ICANN project taking into
account other similar discussions that took place in Montreal with NASIG,
Stakeholder Engagement and Communications presonnel.

In this way we can more successfully infiltrate the needs and interests of
end-users directly into the decision-making sections of ICANN from within
our own  communities - the people we know best..

For the short term however, in order to kick off our post-ATLAS activities
following the normal ATLAS feedback activities, we still have unfinished
business  remaining of the At-Large Review - Issue 2.

We need more people discussing the issues that Alan raises in his draft
document on ALS mobilization. Ideally these discussions should take place
at RALO level and then representatives can take regional messages to Alan's
working group.

The aim will be on how we can attract, train, mobilise and communicate with
individual ALS and unaffiliated members who are committed to being more
active and engaged in  policy issues and discussions, and other At-Large
activities, at whatever level they feel competent and comfortable - within
their RALOs, At-Large or across the ICANN community. We already have
partners ready to go in NPOC and the GAC

Many thanks to Wolfgang for inspiring us further into this discussion about
how we can contribute to the evolving multistakeholder model within ICANN.

I still think that between them, Wolfgang and Sebastian could help to
produce an ICANN Learn resource (including any photographs and video
footage) on the evolution of At-Large and the Board selection process as
preparation for a better understanding for all of us of where we have come
from, so that, just as before we started ATLAS III, we can all contribute
to a more informed discussion of where we should/could be in the future.

In 2017, APRALO produced an eBook to celebrate its first 10 years
<http://online.fliphtml5.com/rvce/fzjj/>, and it was an interesting look at
leadership and change within the RALO. It would be great to read about
other RALOs and their evolution and to keep that on our website for new
people to read about what they will encounter in At-Large in their region..
While it is a look at the past, it helps to shed some light on the path we
will follow in order to evolve, at least for the next 10 years


Natalia Filina via <https://support.google.com/mail/answer/1311182?hl=en>
10:53 AM (6 hours ago)
to Wolfgang, Alan, at-large
Dear Wolfgang,
Many thanks for your interesting excursion into the history and evolution
of our community as also for the fact that this story doesn`t  hide many
sharp moments and your opinion.

This story (seems to me) is a part of the prologue of guide-book for
members,  newcomers of the community (in writing, but better the video, if
you kindly agree to participate in this venture-).

In my humble opinion and perhaps the time for strategic discussions has
come now, just after ATLASIII, when the ranks of leaders have been enhanced
with new faces, new blood, new ideas and new energy.

And, as I may expect the paragraph 8 in your story (maybe in a half of
upcoming year) may got the point about the grown role of ALAC in Evolving
ICANN’s Multistakeholder Model.

Natalia Filina

Secretary of EURALO

Member of ALAC Subcommittee on Outreach and Engagement

Officer of SIG IoT (ISOC)

Wolfgang Kleinwächter via
1:45 AM (15 hours ago)
to Kaili, Alan, at-large

here is the full background story:

1. The original bylaws (1998) did reserve 9 voting seats for an undefined
"At Large Membership". 9 other voting seats were reserved for three SOs
(DNSO, ASO, PSO). Ine seat for the CEO. There was a "placeholder" in the
bylaws because nobody knew, what "At Large" is. An "Membership Advisory
Committee" (MAC) was formed in Singapore during the 1st ICANN meeting in
February 1999 (with the Berkman Center/Jonathan Zittrain as the academic
back up). The MAC had a meeting during the 2nd ICANN in Berlin, July 1999.
It concluded to identify the At Large voting directors via elections in the
year 2000. The whole project was seen as a pilot project for
"cyberdemocracy" and a bigger role of civil society on Internet policy
making. The elections were described as an "experiment". They were
organized with the help of a "Membership Implementation Task Force" (MITF).
As a first step, the plan was to elect five directors from the five ICANN
regions. The election was an exciting but also irritating experience. It
worked and the community (around 200 000 voters) elected five directors
which took their seat at the 2000 Annual Meeting in LA.

2. The elections produced a lot of questions. To answer those questions,
ICANN etsbalished an "At Large Study Group" (ALG), chaired by the former
Swedish prime minister Carl Bildt. The recommendations of the
Bildt-Committee were presented at the ICANN meeting in Montevideo,
September 2001. The main receommendation was to allow only "domainname
holder" to participate in the election to avoid a misuse and to have a
higher level of "representation" by stakeholders. Nevertheless, the
Bildt-Proposal produced a wave of criticism by civil society. Such an
approach would have excluded, inter alia, students, which have an e-Mail
address but no domain name. The domain name is owned by the university
which woulkd have only one vote in the new proposed system. The comparison
was made to the election system in the middle ages where only "landowners"
had a right to vote. The decision was postponed to the LA Annual Meeting in
November 2001. The day after the At Large discussion on Montevideo two
planes crashed into the twin towers in NYC.

3. 9/11 changed the political environment for the development of ICANN.
ICANN was not seen anymore as a project for "cyberdemocracy" but as a
question for "cybersecurity". US senators came to the ICANN meeting in LA
and aksed tough questions how it can be avoided that a "terrorist" get
elected into the ICANN Board of Directors. LA 2001 became the starting
point of the first ICANN reform process.

4. The ICANN reform process was completed within less than two years. It
included a restructuring of ICANN. The DNSO was subdivided into the GNSO
and the CNSO. The PSO was abolished and transformed into  "technical liason
group". The elections of Voting At Large directors were abolished. Instaed
of election a "selection" process was introduced through a new "Nomimation
Committee" (NomCom). The NomCom got the right to "select" 8 voting
directors in a process, strechted over three years (3:3:2). At Large was
transfered into an "At Large Advisory Committee" (ALAC) with one non-voting
liaison in the board. New structures with "recognized ALSs" and "RALOs",
which had to sign a MoU with ICANN, were created. To compensate At Large
for the loss of the nine voting directors, they got five seats in the
NomCom. It was intended, that the NomCom will select directors which
represent users/civil society.

5. After the reform was fixed into the new bylaws a lot of big supporters
of the At Large, Election and Cyberdemocracy concept distanced themselves
more or less from ICANN. Supporters of the new ALAC did not really
represent anymore the big civil society NGOs. ALAC became something like a
"Champions League without Champions". A nunber of civil society
organisation moved within ICANN to the Non-Commercial User Organisation
(NCUC), a constituency iwthin the GNSO. However, the RALOs were formed, the
number of ALSs were growing and over the years, ALAC returned to became
again a more recognized player in the ICANN family. The call for ALAC
voting directors came back and culminated into the call for holding an "At
Large Summit" (ATLAS). ATLAS 1 took place 2008 in Mexico. One sub-committee
produced a resolution which called for two voting seats for ALAC. The Board
recognized the legitimacy of such a call, however, the compromise was to
change the non-voting ALAC liaison in the Board into a Voting Director,
elected by the ALAC itself.

6. This is the situation which stands until now. In my eyes, ATLAS III
(recently in Montreal) was a missed opportunity to have a more strategic
oriented discussion about the role and future of At Large (user, civil
society) in ICANN as a whole. This was also a missed opportunity to ask for
a second voting seat in the Board. However, it was good to see that NCUC
and ALAC entered into a more constructive and forward looking dialogue
which ould lead to a stronger voice of the user/civil society stakeholder
group within the empowered community.

7.  With the IANA transition and the emergence of the "empowered community"
we have reached a new situation. However, this is not the end of the story.
In my eyes there is a need for something like a Work Stream 3 (WS3) which
looks deeper into the existing structure of ICANN and how it matches the
needs of the 2020s or whether a structural reform is needed to adjust it to
the new challenges in a post-IANA transition period.  With other words,
ATLAS IV (2024?) could re-introduce the call for a 2nd AT Large voting
Best wishes

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