[At-Large] ICANN75: Mandatory Funded Traveler Registration for Roberto Gaetano

Evan Leibovitch evan at telly.org
Wed Jul 27 07:55:27 UTC 2022

On Tue, Jul 26, 2022 at 4:17 PM Karl Auerbach via At-Large <
at-large at atlarge-lists.icann.org> wrote:

> I've long been in opposition to the "stakeholder" model of governance.
I'm not sure that I have a problem with the pure concept of stakeholders.
What is missing is a sense of balance as you note in your papers, that the
end-users of the Internet have more of a stake in its direction than its
service providers and profiteers, but the latter get themselves more
representation because they have a financial interest to study and exploit
any gaps in well-intentioned rules.

In ICANN the inequality isn't even subtle; it's hard-coded. The
self-interested have the ability to compel the Board to do their bidding
while governments and the public interest (ie, those outside the
domain-buying food chain) sit on the sidelines giving easily-ignored advice.

Were the script flipped -- public and state interests in policy-making
roles with the self-interested participating as advisors -- the DNS would
look very different than it does now. But that genie ain't going back in
the bottle.

> (in those days that larger body could have been "the members" but ICANN
> sank that ship long ago - but it can be, and ought to be, re-floated.)
We'lll have to disagree on the hope. IMO there is absolutely zero incentive
for the status quo to relinquish its power and impose accountability on
itself. Given a golden opportunity to do so, we got that cruel joke of an
"empowered community"  which doubled down on the imbalance.

It's my belief at this time, based on how ICANN has used previous
opportunities to improve itself, that meaningful reform from within is not
possible. The stimulus for change will have to be external -- maybe the EU,
maybe the California AG, maybe some chaotic event or action so publicly
unpalatable that the non-treaty-bound trust that countries have in ICANN
disintegrates. To me that scenario is far more plausible than progress from
within. The .ORG debacle was a wake-up call, the next such episode may push
the boundary of acceptability too far. When it comes, the threat will not
arise from the usual ITU bugaboo, but from some yet-unimagined source.


- Evan
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