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RE: [whois-sc] ISPCP View on Task Force Discussion

  • To: <whois-sc@xxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • Subject: RE: [whois-sc] ISPCP View on Task Force Discussion
  • From: "Bruce Tonkin" <Bruce.Tonkin@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • Date: Tue, 21 Oct 2003 20:02:09 +1000
  • Sender: owner-whois-sc@xxxxxxxxxxxxxx
  • Thread-index: AcOXMBplR3vYDnMLRcOrWR94alQdsQAhmGuw
  • Thread-topic: [whois-sc] ISPCP View on Task Force Discussion

Hello Maggie,

Thanks for providing the ISPCP view.

The three task force terms of reference are consistent with both the
WHOIS Privacy issues report produced by the Staff Manager, and the tasks
within each task force area are prioritised in accordance with the
priorities specified by the constituencies.

I interpreted the recent discussions as fine tuning the terms of
reference for a task force, rather than a policy discussion.  I think
the discussions have been useful to create a better understanding of the
core issues.  You are right that task force 2 is a complex area and will
require careful thought.  In fact the WHOIS workshop in Carthage has as
one of its topics a discussion about data elements.  This was identified
as an important area following for ICANN following the WHOIS workshop in

I think there are three distinct areas, and I think it is worth
considering them in the context of the overall long term improvement of
WHOIS, but with the objective of making some improvements in the
priority areas raised by the constituencies.

With respect to resources the options as I see them are:

(1) Have a single task force with 1 representative per constituency to
cover all three areas
- this has the advantage of only requiring a constituency to supply one
representative, and has the advantage of a single reporting point to the
GNSO Council
- the disadvantage is that the work items will almost certainly need to
be worked on by working groups within the task force (as they are quite
distinct areas), and each working group will then only consist of a
subset of the whole task force
- there will likely be ongoing conflicts about which area should receive
the most attention, and it will be burdensome for the chair of this task
- this model has been used before in the most recent WHOIS task force

(2) Have 3 task forces with 1 representative per constituency per task
- this has the advantage that constituencies can provide a
representative with specific expertise in the area of the task force,
but it is a resourcing issue for constituencies that do not have members
with a strong personal interest in participation in policy development
- the council will need to manage inputs from three task forces,
although in any case the council would need to consider the outputs of
three distinct areas identified
- each task force will be able to work to its own time frames as
appropriate for the area of work, and some task forces will have a long
term lifetime
- there will be less issues with prioritisation conflicts as each task
force will be responsible for reaching convergence and presenting its
findings to the GNSO Council.
- each task force becomes a focal point for discussion amongst the other
parts of ICANN

The GNSO Council has the role of coordinating the work of the task
forces and ensuring they are resourced appropriately.  If constituencies
cannot resource the three task forces separately - then we will need to
work with a single task force working on all three areas in a parallel.
I think that in itself will be a very difficult role for that task force
- and may require the development of separate working groups with
specific expertise in the area - which may converge to the second option

For the next call - lets discuss the terms of reference for task force
3, and try to fine tune the wording for task force 2.  It is strange
that I have seen no comments on task force 3  (accuracy) which is an
important issue.  It seems we are again spending more time on process
(how many task forces, and which is the most important issue) then we
are on the substance of getting the questions right.

Separately we can consider the resourcing problem.  It will be useful to
hear from each committee member on the resourcing options, but I think
we should take that question to the GNSO Council meeting in Carthage for
further discussion once we know the work areas.  Constituencies will be
able to discuss this amongst their members at the meeting in Carthage
prior to the Council meeting.
I think there is a reasonable chance of getting better staff support to
ensure that each area can get the attention it deserves.

It will be relatively easy to combine the three task forces into one if
that is required for resourcing reasons.  If it turns out that the same
individuals are recommended by a constituency for all three task forces
- then that will also indicate that we are better off managing it
through one task force.  I am hopeful that constituencies could consult
with their members and attempt to identify three separate individuals
with relevant expertise for each area. 

Once we have some agreement on the terms of reference for the three
areas, I can create a combined task force terms of reference (with order
of tasks as agreed) for consideration by the council at the same time.

Bruce Tonkin


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