[At-Large] [BMSPC-2020] Board seat 15 selection

Karl Auerbach karl at cavebear.com
Wed Nov 20 06:58:52 UTC 2019

You sound upset about the Boston Working Group.

The BWG has never hidden its existence nor denied its formation. We 
remain an active forum of discussion.

A simple Google search will turn up our formative URL - 

Of course our proposal didn't "win" - Joe Sims had already worked out 
several secret deals (he told me so) to make sure that his (i.e. Jones 
Day's) proposal was the industrial favorite.  Nonetheless we were 
invited to participate in the final negotiations with the US Dep't of 
Commerce and NTIA.

(I remember one of those negotiating sessions quite clearly - I was 
using an early VoIP system and for many of the participants it was the 
first time they had ever heard a telephone call carried by the internet.)

We do protect our conversations under something like Chatham House 
Rules.  https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chatham_House_Rule

As for your aspersions on elections:

It is hard to credit your claim that the electorate was Gerrymandered 
when everyone was free to register in ICANN's year 2000 elections.

The difficulties that occurred in that election were due to incompetent 
software designed by and built by ICANN - software that overloaded and 
failed at a transaction rate measured in terms of a few transactions per 
*minute*!  (I guess that foreshadowed ICANN's disaster of "digital 
archery" a bit more than a decade later - 
https://icannwiki.org/Digital_Archery )

Your assertion that the issues we discussed during the year 2000 
campaign were "fake" is incorrect.  You can see my own platform points 
at https://www.cavebear.com/archive/icann-board/platform.htm

Other candidates had similar lists of issues and views.  These were 
debated at moderated, live, public, online meetings at Harvard, Stanford 
and elsewhere.  We also held many open discussions online, on public 
radio, and in print media.

I note your statement that ICANN should be controlled by those who have 
an "interest or stake".  That's nice, particularly for those who get the 
privilege to measure and rule upon the "interest or stake" of others. 
It's also a high speed road that leads to the kind of industrial capture 
that ICANN is suffering from today.

Elections, warts and all, are a far better system than paternal neo 

It would be difficult to overestimate the financial damage that this 
paternalism and capture has caused.  For example, ICANN's never-audited, 
never justified registry fee allowance is costing the community of 
internet users an amount that by some estimates is in excess of a 
$Billion (USD) per year in unsupportable, monopoly domain name registry 

That damage might have happened had ICANN's board been publicly elected 
through the years.  But then again, at least had there been elections, 
those who are paying those $$ might have elected board members who would 
have required that those fees be justified and adjusted to conform to 
actual registry costs.

It is sad that ICANN chose to destroy what could have developed into a 
vibrant system to allow the public to control an entity created to 
benefit that same public.


On 11/19/19 8:52 PM, Dr. Alejandro Pisanty Baruch wrote:
> No number of repetitions of this revision of history will make it any more believable without disclosure of your previous involvement in the "Boston Working Group" and its competing, not awarded, bid for the ICANN function, nor the lack of understanding of fundamental electoral theory  it shows. Elections are a process to identify the preferences of a given electorate and no election is better than its voter registration. Rallying voters on fake arguments, unrelated to their interest or stake in the election, and forming with them the voter registry is, has been, and always will be a sham.
> Alejandro Pisanty
> - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
>       Dr. Alejandro Pisanty
> Facultad de Química UNAM
> Av. Universidad 3000, 04510 Mexico DF Mexico
> +52-1-5541444475 FROM ABROAD
> +525541444475 DESDE MÉXICO SMS +525541444475
> Blog: http://pisanty.blogspot.com
> LinkedIn: http://www.linkedin.com/in/pisanty
> Unete al grupo UNAM en LinkedIn, http://www.linkedin.com/e/gis/22285/4A106C0C8614
> Twitter: http://twitter.com/apisanty
> ---->> Unete a ISOC Mexico, http://www.isoc.org
> .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .
> ________________________________________
> Desde: At-Large [at-large-bounces at atlarge-lists.icann.org] en nombre de Karl Auerbach [karl at cavebear.com]
> Enviado el: martes, 19 de noviembre de 2019 10:13
> Hasta: Wolfgang Kleinwächter; Adam Peake; Olivier MJ Crépin-Leblond; Kaili Kan; Alan Greenberg
> CC: at-large at atlarge-lists.icann.org
> Asunto: Re: [At-Large] [BMSPC-2020] Board seat 15 selection
> I like your story.
> I have been involved with ICANN since before it was formed.
> In that swirling of events around the formation of ICANN there was a
> bright belief and requirement that ICANN be structured, after a short
> initial interim organizational period, so that it would be controlled by
> the community of internet users.
> But as we look on the ICANN today only a small splinter remains of that
> obligation.  And that small relic was regained only through long and
> hard work and over much opposition.
> Much of this is reflected in our 2009 report at
> https://www.icann.org/en/system/files/files/final-report-alac-review-09jun09-en.pdf
> Take a look at my "concurrence" that begins on page 33.
> Today's ICANN is an epitome of a regulatory body captured by those who
> it purports to regulate.
> In the 20+ years since ICANN was formed not even one new organization
> has chosen to model itself upon ICANN.
> This thread of e-mails mentions the year 2000 elections.  I am certain
> that there will arise at least one voice that tries to besmirch that event.
> One should not forget that ICANN has a long held allergy to elections,
> and even to the word "election" itself.  ICANN, or rather the law firm
> that created ICANN, fears what are some reasonable obligations that are
> triggered by organizational elections.  The list of those obligations,
> as well as ICANN's dance of evasion, is visible in ICANN's own 1999
> document:
> http://archive.icann.org/en/meetings/santiago/membership-analysis.htm
> The year 2000 elections were an initial attempt to organize an election,
> or to use ICANN's word, a "selection".
> For an first-time effort that election went reasonably well.
> There are those who will focus on the difficulties or problems of that
> election - not unlike a new parent who obsesses on the disruption, mess,
> and noise of a new baby yet fails to remember that that child represents
> a new human, and new person, a new potential, coming into the world.
> It is easy to forget some of the events of that election:
> An electorate formed quickly without ICANN support or funding -
> ultimately there were, if I remember correctly, well more than 200,000
> voters who tried to register to participate (many could not consummate
> their registrations because ICANN's registration system was an abysmal
> failure of design, implementation, and operation.)
> There was a robust campaign and debate in the North American region
> (less so in other regions.)  My own campaign platform is still online at
> https://www.cavebear.com/archive/icann-board/platform.htm  (I still hew
> to most of that platform with the exception of my mistaken view of Louis
> Touton, a man who I came to know as one of the bright lights of ICANN.)
> The entire process was disrupted by at least one ICANN-related person.
> And there was general institutional hostility (by ICANN) against the
> process once the ballot was opened to allow candidates not chosen by
> ICANN's "nominating" committee.
> There were some problems with those elections.  But in general they were
> a success.
> The problems that did occur could have been addressed on the next round
> that would have occurred two or three years later.  But that opportunity
> was lost and destroyed.
> If ICANN is to survive as anything more than a regulatory relic it needs
> to return to its root conception as a body that is unambiguously
> controlled by the public for whose benefit it purports to exist.
>           --karl--
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