GNSO Council Teleconference Minutes

Last Updated: 27 October 2010
Date: 
6 December 2007
6 December 2007

Proposed agenda and documents

List of attendees:
Philip Sheppard - Commercial & Business Users C
Mike Rodenbaugh - Commercial & Business Users C.
Bilal Beiram - Commercial & Business Users C
Greg Ruth - ISCPC
Antonio Harris - ISCPC - absent - apologies
Tony Holmes - ISCPC
Thomas Keller- Registrars - absent - apologies
Tim Ruiz - Registrars
Adrian Kinderis - Registrars - absent - apologies
Chuck Gomes - gTLD registries
Edmon Chung - gTLD registries
Jordi Iparraguirre - gTLD registries
Kristina Rosette - Intellectual Property Interests C
Ute Decker - Intellectual Property Interests C - absent - aoplogies
Cyril Chau - Intellectual Property Interests C
Robin Gross - NCUC
Norbert Klein - NCUC
Carlos Souza - NCUC
Olga Cavalli - Nominating Committee appointee
Jon Bing - Nominating Committee appointee - absent - apologies
Avri Doria - Nominating Committee appointee

16 Council Members
( 20 Votes - quorum)

ICANN Staff

Denise Michel - Vice President, Policy Development - absent - apologies
Liz Gasster - Senior Policy Officer
Dan Halloran - Deputy General Counsel
Olof Nordling - Manager, Policy Development Coordination
Tina Dam - IDN Program Director
Glen de Saint Géry - GNSO Secretariat
Craig Schwartz - Chief gTLD Registry Liaison
Patrick Jones - Registry Liaison Manager - absent excused

GNSO Council Liaisons
Suzanne Sene - GAC Liaison - absent
Alan Greenberg - ALAC Liaison - absent

Rita Rodin - ICANN Board member
Bruce Tonkin - ICANN Board member - absent - apologies

MP3 Recording

Chuck Gomes chaired the meeting.

Approval of the agenda

Avri Doria requested that the following items be added under Any Other Business
- Travel expense letter
- IDN mailing list

Item 1: Update any Statements of Interest
Statements of Interest received from new councillors:
Carlos Souza
http://gnso.icann.org/council/soi/souza-soi-27nov07.shtml

Item 2: Item 2 - Approve Nominating Committee job description
http://gnso.icann.org/drafts/nomcom-position-03dec07.pdf

Greg Ruth, seconded by Tim Ruiz proposed that:
The GNSO Council move a motion to approve the Nominating Committee job description as agreed upon by the Council and set forth in the document.

The motion unanimously passed by voice vote.

Decision 1: The GNSO Council moved a motion to approve the Nominating Committee job description as agreed upon by the Council and set forth in the document.

Item 3 - Status update on the Inter-Registrar Transfer Policy Planning Group

Olof Nordling reported in the absence of Ross Rader, who is the group coordinator.

Background:

One of the 3 documents produced by the working group to review inter-registrar transfers
http://gnso.icann.org/meetings/minutes-gnso-12may05.htm
was a Communication to GNSO on Policy Issues Arising from the Transfer Review that requested an Issues Report.

At the GNSO Council meeting on Thursday, 11 October 2007, pursuant to the Council resolution passed regarding the Registrar Transfer Policy on 20 September, 2007 that the GNSO Council form a short-term planning group to analyse and prioritize the policy issues raised in the report "Communication to GNSO
on Policy Issues Arising from Transfer Review" before the Council further considers a PDP on any of the work discussed in the report."

Update:

Ross Rader was appointed as the lead/coordinator for the short-term planning group.
The group worked on a mailing list to prioritise a list of 19 identified issues and held one teleconference on 26 November 2007 to discuss the ranking of the members input. The group decided to create a final report summarizing the input on the priorities received to date. In addition to the summary of priorities, the group also decided to include whatever supplementary statements the members of the committee wished to have included in the report to the Council, so as to ensure that those comments received visibility during the Council's deliberations.

The purpose of the exercise was to prepare for additional policy development processes (PDP), not to amend the already launched PDP. The prioritised list could be considered as a starting point for such.
The comments should be in by Friday, 7 December, after which Ross Rader will compile the report for Council in the week of 10 - 14 December 2007.

Item 4 - 'Whois Studies'

Chuck Gomes introduced the topic reminding Council of Part 3 of the resolution 20071031-3 that
"Recognizes the demand for future policy development including, but not limited to, ensuring appropriate privacy safeguards for natural persons, lawful access to data for rights enforcement, consumer protection, law enforcement and anti-crime purposes and will immediately initiate the following sequential actions:
1) Council shall provide additional definition regarding the potential data gathering and study requirements
2) staff shall provide the Council with rough cost estimates for various components of data gathering and studies no later than February 15th, 2008
3) the Council will decide what data gathering and studies would be pursued, and
4) staff will perform the resulting data gathering and studies and report the results back to the Council."

Liz Gasster explained the various steps that were envisioned for the group:
1. Provide a format to solicit what studies should be undertaken
2. Distribute the format to the community for input
3. Evaluate the returned input
4. Calculate a general cost assessment based on the group's input and have this prepared by the New Delhi meetings in February 2008.

The draft template for the WHOIS studies would be reviewed by the Council at its meeting on 20 December 2007.

Volunteers for the group:
Liz Gasster, Senior Policy Officer from ICANN staff was designated as the group coordinator
Steve Delbianco - CBUC
Milton Mueller - NCUC
Avri Doria - Nominating Committee appointee
The IPC and Registrar constituencies will appoint representatives.

Item 5 - IDNC and new ccTLD allocation issues discussion

a. Description of the issue
The Internationalized Domain Names Committee (IDNC) is being formed by the ccNSO according to a
charter adopted by the ccNSO and referenced in a Board resolution in Los Angeles, in November, 2007.
The Charter of the group is to try to come up with a fast track approach, by June 2008, for introducing IDN TLDs that would be associated with ISO-3166 country code names. Some of the considerations raised in the ccNSO/GAC Issues Report were that the names would not be 2 character names, but would be associated with the country codes, and not necessarily operated by the existing ccTLD operators. The group has a narrow responsibility to examine whether a plan could be put forward to fast track some IDN TLDs associated with country codes until such time as the ccNSO can develop a complete policy for IDN TLDs associated with country codes.

b. - report on GNSO chair exchange with ccNSO chair
Currently the ccNSO charter states that there should be 2 GNSO representatives on the IDNC.

Avri Doria reported that discussions with Chris Disspain, the ccNSO Council chair, had not been successful in obtaining increased GNSO representation on the group.
Chuck Gomes said Chris explained that minimising the size of the group was to make it more effective and that 5 ccNSO members represented the 5 regions and for this reason the GAC was allowed the same number of representatives. The aim of the group was a consensus building effort to introduce one IDN TLD per country code where the ccTLD operators were ready and where there was the greatest demand.

If the GNSO selects two representatives at the current meeting it would not mean that the GNSO has given up trying to get larger representation in the group.

Avri Doria clarified that in the charter:
- there was no commitment to one name per existing ccTLD
- there was no current guarantee that the ccNSO and GAC participation would be restricted to 5 representatives per group
- Chris Disspain had emphasised that the allocation of names was a ccNSO/GAC issue and the GNSO and other groups were being included for consultation and expertise.

Chuck Gomes stated that a key question related to the allocation of names in the name space was whether all names, not on the ISO-3166-1 list, were presumed to be in the generic name space. It was unlikely that a new ISO list for IDN names and territories, as for the 2 letter country codes, would be created. It thus became a fundamental issue for the GNSO because the allocation of names in the name space was a broad issue that required full community participation.

Tim Ruiz supported additional membership because it was as much a GNSO, as it was ccNSO and GAC issue.

Olga Cavalli supported the idea that there could be more than one IDN ccTLD allocated to countries where there was more than one language with the number of characters required in that language, but anything in excess of that qualified as a new gTLD and belonged in the 'g' space.

Norbert Klein supported the allocation of names, outside the ISO-3166 space as being a GNSO policy issue and not a technical question.

Edmon Chung viewed the allocation of the name space as a larger ICANN issue, but was in favour of the ccNSO/GAC fast track approach for satisfying those countries that needed IDN ccTLDs and as a means of defining issues and providing input to a broader discussion on the topic. Edmon likened the fast track approach to the experimental basket used in the gTLD process. Edmon supported increased GNSO membership in the group, or alternately having observers in addition to the 2 chosen representatives.

Philip Sheppard, speaking as an individual, noted that:

1. Solutions were not simple and logic would not always work. Generally Government involvement did not favour a logical process and there was no precedent in terms of mapping the historic ISO- 3166 list into IDNs. So, a clean extrapolation from the new gTLD process in a logical way to predict certain outcomes was unlikely. Following the fast-track approach of one IDN ccTLD per country would work for some countries but not for others, because of political issues and shared multiple scripts.
2. The number of people in the group did not play such an important role if there was no voting, as long as there were two people who could provide regular feed back to the Council.
3. Trying to promulgate a particular view might be preempting the discussions. However, the GNSO could perhaps state a minimal level agreement that their current view was, that all IDNs were in the generic name space until such time as there was an agreement or reservation policy which could be examined.

Tim Ruiz was in agreement with Philip Sheppard and noted that the current ccTLD space was becoming very competitive with the gTLD space. ccTLD operators were not required to have the same agreements as the gTLD registries with ICANN, such as mandating that only ICANN accredited registrars be used by the registries to offer registration services.
Thought should be given to allowing the ccTLD space to expand without a framework of documents and agreements with ICANN, and how this imbalance effects the business of Registrars and Registries, the user and business constituencies, in regard to other policies and rules that apply to the domain name registrations in the gTLD space.

Chuck Gomes referred to Milton Mueller's blog posting which raised another nuance that a new IDN gTLD would be a giveaway for country codes, while it would cost several hundred thousand dollars to even get a chance to play for the gTLD applicants wanting an IDN gTLD.

Avri Doria offered 3 clarifications with regard to the IDNC working group charter:

- the charter did not mention official languages because not all countries have an official language.

- the charter specifically stated that anything that the IDNC did, would not set precedence for the ccNSO's PDP on the full solution for ccTLDs.

- the charter was approved by the ICANN Board, thus if the Council wanted increased representation, back-ups or observers,it may be appropriate to send a request to the Board asking for such consideration.

Tina Dam commented that it was interesting that the Council opened up a specific name space discussion and referred to the workshop on IDN policy in Lisbon attended by ccNSO, GNSO and GAC members
http://www.icann.org/meetings/lisbon/agenda-idn-wg-28mar07.htm
where there was broad agreement that from a technical standpoint IDN TLDs were not different from gTLDs and getting some IDN TLDs deployed for production should be beneficial to both groups.

Tina offered the following observations to address the GNSO concerns:

- The IDN ccTLDs need to be limited as well as country and territory specific.
- There will be no delegation of ccTLDs that could be considered gTLDs.
- Any TLDs allocated in the fast track cycle would not set precedence but would need to follow the rules and policies to be set later in the formal ccNSO Policy Development Process.
Some sensitive points include the comparison to the initial round of new gTLDs where there was no interaction from the country code side at that time.
In terms of timing, there are concerns about who gets TLDs in the root first. From the staff point of view, there is an attempt to merge the introduction of new gTLDs to have IDN ccTLDs go into the root at more or less the same time. In terms of contracts and fees, where the 'cs' and the 'gs' are very different, further discussion is required.
Seeking a middle ground, with GNSO participation in the IDNC, is important for the fast track approach to succeed.

Chuck Gomes, expanding on the 'middle ground' concept, asked if it would be reasonable to believe that it was good for countries or territories to have an IDN version(s), of their country code names, realizing that in many cases it would go beyond two-characters, for use in their country and territory and for users of the script? Could Council support such a notion, or were there proponents for the other extreme that everything outside of the ISO 3166-1 list belonged to the gTLD space?

Olga Cavalli commented that in her view, anything outside of the ISO 3166-1 list would be generic ('g') name space, but country names could be in scripts other than ASCII. However, the whole name of the country in another script, would then belong in the 'g' space.

Avri Doria, stating her personal viewpoint, believed that until such time as a reallocation of the name space had been undertaken by ICANN, the community as a whole, Supporting Oragnisations and Advisory Committees, all of the name space, IDN and ASCII, was generic except for the ISO 3166-1 two character ASCII list.
Avri totally supported the notion of a fast track approach without waiting for the full reallocation discussion.

Tim Ruiz, as an individual Registrar, agreed with Avri and supported the fast approach, but expressed reservations about the policies and rules that the IDN TLDs would fall under. The current ccTLD market trends indicated that the allocation of additional IDN TLDs would not necessarily benefit the local people in their country. The gTLD space versus ccTLD space was important from the GNSO’s perspective in that consideration should be given to one of ICANN's core values, to promote and sustain a competitive environment.

Edmon Chung, supported the fast track approach and reminded the group that despite the broad agreement that existed from a technical standpoint that IDN country/territory TLDs were not different from IDN gTLDs; a clear distinction could not be made before their deployment. Thus it would be inappropriate for the GNSO to preempt a position, but rather be informed on the issue by the fast track approach.

Mike Rodenbaugh expressed support for the fast track approach and, while recognizing that IDNs needed to go beyond two characters, believed that they should not go beyond a direct reference to a country’s name.

Robin Gross supported the fast track approach and added that the GNSO needed to be a part of the decision in scoping the name space.

Chuck Gomes proposed that a small group be formed to develop a clear statement, for consideration by the Council if possible by the next Council meeting on 20 December 2007, that describes the Council's position regarding:
1. - the basis for allocating TLDs to the GNSO and ccNSO name spaces,
2. - clarification of the limited scope of the IDNC

The group would do its work on a dedicated email list and by teleconference to develop the statement.

Volunteers for the group:
Avri Doria - Nominating Committee appointee
Olga Cavalli - Nominating Committee appointee
Edmon Chung - gTLD Registries constituency
Robin Gross - NCUC
Tim Ruiz - Registrar constituency

Tina Dam and Liz Gasster, ICANN staff, volunteered to co-ordinate the group

Kristina Rosette, seconded by Edmon Chung proposed that:

The GNSO Council submit a formal request to the ICANN Board for increased GNSO participation on the IDNC working group as stated in the charter that was approved by the ICANN Board

The Motion passed unanimously by voice vote

Decision 2:
The GNSO Council submit a formal request to the ICANN Board for increased GNSO participation on the IDNC working group as stated in the charter that was approved by the ICANN Board.

Item 6 - Choose 2 GNSO representatives on the IDNC

a. Decide on closing and halting the recording for this part of the meeting

The Council agreed to proceed with the recording of the meeting for the selection of two GNSO representatives on the IDNC.

b. Discuss candidates and pick 2 as required by the current IDNC charter

Avri Doria reported that there were 6 candidates:

Cary Karp - gTLD Registries Constituency
Edmon Chung - gTLD Registries constituency
Avri Doria - Nominating Committee Appointee
OLga Cavalli - Nominating Committee Appointee
Charles Sha'ban - IPC
Yoav Keren - Registrar Constituency

Chuck Gomes noted certain selection criteria:

1 - good understanding of IDN issues from a technical and policy point of view.
2 - good representation of the views of the GNSO and in particular, the Council's views.
3 - good regional representation from key areas, such as Asia, the Arabic world and India, where there was the greatest demand for IDN TLDs

Charles Sha'ban with technical and policy knowledge of both the gTLD and ccTLD environments was proposed by the Intellectual Property Interests Constituency and supported by the CBUC, Norbert Klein and Chuck Gomes. In addition to rich exposure to Intellectual Property Rights (IPRs), generic and country code Domain Names, and Multilingual Domain Name issues, Charles Sha'ban is the Executive Director of the Regional office of Abu-Ghazaleh Intellectual Property (AGIP), member of Talal Abu-Ghazaleh Organization (TAGOrg), Director of Internet Affairs in TAGOrg. and Founding Member and ex-board member of the Arab Internet Names Consortium (AINC)

Edmon Chung stated that he had actively worked with IDNs since their inception in 1999. He had followed through the policy process being involved in ccTLD’s especially in Asia, where there was a pent-up demand for IDNS and also being from GTLD space, understood the overlapping, rather than the conflicting issues as well as the political sensitivities that existed.
Edmon is an elected member of the elections committee of the Hong Kong special administrative region, a member of the Chinese Domain Name Consortium and was involved in developing the ICANN IDN Guidelines. Edmon believed that his technical knowledge, policy experience, awareness of cultural and political sensitivities of the regions that are most eager for IDN TLD deployment, would provide a valuable contribution to the Council's position in the IDNC.

Philip Sheppard, seconded by Bilal Beiram proposed that:

The GNSO Council approves two candidates to join the IDNC working group,
namely, Edmon Chung (gTLD registry constituency) and Charles Sha'ban (Intellectual Property constituency) with alternates Olga Cavalli (Nominating Committee appointee) and Cary Karp (gTLD registry constituency)

The motion unanimously passed by voice vote.

Decision 3:
The GNSO Council approved two candidates to join the IDNC working group,
namely, Edmon Chung (gTLD registry constituency) and Charles Sha'ban (Intellectual Property constituency) with alternates Olga Cavalli (Nominating Committee appointee) and Cary Karp (gTLD registry constituency)


Action Items:
Avri Doria proposed writing a letter to the Board, with a copy to the ccNSO and the GAC chairs asking for expansion of the GNSO participation in the IDNC.
Avri Doria also proposed informing the IDNC that the GNSO had selected 2 members with two alternate participants and request that the GNSO chair be allowed to participate, at least as an observer, until such time as there was a ruling on the Council's request for expansion of the IDNC membership.

Item 7 - Action Item Review
http://gnso.icann.org/meetings/pending-action-list.pdf

Chuck Gomes reporting on the GNSO Council response to the GAC/ CCNSO issues paper on IDN TLD’s, said that the group had been formed, they had held one meeting, and were revising the statement via Google documents. The goal was to have a rough draft before the Council by January 18, 2008.

Avri Doria proposed to work with staff on crafting a motion on proxy voting for the next meeting on 20 December 2007.

Kristina Rosette called the Council's attention to the revised IGO Domain Name DRP and the vote on a PDP that was scheduled at the next meeting on 20 December, 2007.

The GNSO Secretariat reminded Council that the nomination period for GNSO Council chair would close at 23:00 UTC and that voting would start on Thursday 13 December 2007 and run through to 7 January 2008.

Item 8 - AOB
8.1 Travel funding
Avri Doria stated that there were two actions being undertaken:
- a letter that had almost been stabilized to Dr. Paul Twomey, the CEO requesting funding for volunteer councillors to attend ICANN meetings
- a discussion with Doug Brent and Denise Michel on the utilization of money that had been allocated in the 2006-2007 budget to fund participation at intersessional meetings.

Avri proposed that both actions should proceed in parallel.

Chuck Gomes suggested that the issue be divided in two:
One, funding for India, which was a short term need, involving high expenses and the possibility of using funds that were budgeted, not for ICANN meetings, but for other GNSO policy work,
Two, the long term issue of funding the related travel for GNSO policy work.

Kristina Rosette noted that funding was to ensure all volunteers, who contributed to the formation of ICANN's policy, were actually in a position to do that without personal financial disadvantage. If ICANN was essentially limiting participation, barring reimbursement of reasonable travel expenses, it was inconsistent with the entire bottom up, international, multi-stakeholder model.

Tim Ruiz, from a personal point of view, was in general agreement with the concept of funding travel. If GNSO policy was a considerable part of what took place at ICANN meetings then reasonable expenses should be covered to ensure good Council representation. However, there was some strong opposition to the concept in the Registrars Constituency.

Jordi Iparraguirre, speaking for the gTLD Registry Constituency noted that the constituency did not oppose travel subsidisation but that the criteria for having such support should be transparent, crystal clear, and public.
There should be a strong case made for the need of support. The question should be asked whether it is necessary for all participants to be physically present at meetings.
The constituency would like to see ICANN invest more in the constituencies and the council to provide video conferencing tools to minimize travel and allow participation at any time and any in place in the world.

Bilal Beiram supported Jordi, but until such time as the remote participation via video conferencing had been developed, physical participation was important.

Norbert Klein agreed that there were two different issues, the immediate New Delhi meetings and the long term travel policy, and urged for the matter to be expedited, because airline tickets increased in price nearer the dates.

Chuck Gomes added that the issue of meeting venue for meetings was an important issue and needed to be revisited.

Avri Doria stated that as Council Chair she would put forward the Council position, but her personal view was that parity of treatment with the ICANN Board and staff should be requested.

Chuck Gomes summarised, that two constituencies had noted hesitations about a blanket request for travel funding while different personal views were expressed in at least one of those constituencies. Almost everybody else seemed to be supportive of requesting travel funding.
Furthermore, there might not be an immediate need for the letter to the CEO addressing the long term issue. Actions were already underway involving Denise Michel and Doug Brent that should be pursued for rapid possible funding with a resolution, not later than the next Council meeting on 20 December 2007.

Avri Doria invited Council members to inform her privately if they were completely dependent on funding to attend the New Delhi meetings.

Chuck Gomes adjourned the GNSO Council meeting and thanked everyone for their participation.The meeting ended at 17:30 UTC.

Next GNSO Council teleconference will be on 20 December 2007 at 15:00 UTC.
see: Calendar