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GNSO Council Minutes 15 July 2010

Last Updated:
05 August 2010

Proposed agenda and documents

The meeting started at 11:03 UTC.

List of attendees:

Andrei Kolesnikov NCA – Non Voting

Contracted Parties House
Registrar Stakeholder Group: Tim Ruiz, Adrian Kinderis; Stéphane van Gelder - joined the meeting after the roll call
gTLD Registries Stakeholder Group: Chuck Gomes, Caroline Greer, Edmon Chung
Nominating Committee Appointee (NCA): Terry Davis

Non-Contracted Parties House
Commercial Stakeholder Group (CSG): Wolf-Ulrich Knoben, Jaime Wagner, David Taylor, Kristina Rosette,
Zahid Jamil-absent apologies; Mike Rodenbaugh-absent
Non Commercial Stakeholder Group (NCSG): Rafik Dammak, Debra Hughes; Rosemary Sinclair, Wendy Seltzer, Mary Wong; (joined the meeting after the roll call).
William Drake & Kristina Rosette - absent apologies
Nominating Committee Appointee (NCA): Olga Cavalli

GNSO Council Liaisons/Observers
Alan Greenberg – ALAC Liaison - absent
Han Chuan Lee – ccNSO Observer


David Olive - Vice President, Policy Development
Craig Schwartz - Chief gTLD Registry Liaison
Patrick Jones - Senior Manager of Continuity & Risk Management
Margie Milam - Senior Policy Counselor
Marika Konings - Policy Director
Julie Hedlund - Policy Director
Rob Hoggarth - Senior Policy Director
Glen de Saint Géry - GNSO Secretariat

Invited Guests:
Ken Bour - Consultant
Lisa Phifer - Consultant

For detailed information of the meeting, please refer to:

Item 1: Administrative Items

1.2 Update any Statements of Interest

Disclosure of Interest from Chuck Gomes regarding agenda Item 7: Resolution on New gTLD String Similarity Evaluation:

VeriSign plans to apply for multiple IDN versions of its .com and .net gTLDs and as such has an interest in this agenda item.

1 3 Review/amend the agenda

1.4. Note the status of minutes for the previous Council meeting per the GNSO Operating Procedures

23 June Meeting – Scheduled for approval on 15 July 2010.

Item 2: Prioritization of GNSO work

Chuck Gomes noted that it was not the purpose of the discussion to complete the agenda item but to start gathering input on what has been learned and begin thinking about how to do an evaluation of the process with suggestions for possible improvements.

Ken Bour provided Council with an overview of the questions that were raised by the drafting team.

  • Are the objectives clear? Have we satisfactorily answered why are we doing this activity?
  • Does the process make sense in terms of leading to the stated objective?
  • Does the methodology require accepting any assumptions that have not been disclosed?
  • Are the instructions, guidelines, and definitions clear and sensible?
  • If tools are provided, do they work as described?
  • How would the results be used?

Highlights from the Council discussion:

  • Wendy Seltzer stated that it was not a useful exercise, not much was learnt, should not proceed further with the prioritisation exercise.
  • Adrian kinderis said spending more time on the exercise will not accomplish useful results.
    Others shared:
  • It was a d ifficult exercise, policy matters were not prioritised and the core issue, management of the workload, still has not been resolved.
  • The exercise was intended as first step and not intended to solve the workload management; other steps are needed. The exercise contributed an important degree of common awareness and dissent to the group.
  • The prioritsation process could be improved with further input from the Councillors and stakeholder groups.
  • The exercise is important and informative from a staff perspective and the Council needs to look at a two-step process going forward:
    • step one: form a small team to improve the process used to date drawing on input received.
    • step two: develop a process to manage the workload with input from staff of the resources being used to support each of the working groups, which will reflect both staff and community efforts
  • Support was expressed for continuing the prioritisation work, but linking it to the overall ICANN Staff and Community workload and to the Budget process.
  • The question of available resources should be looked at in context. The Vertical Integration working group as an example of one that would not normally have commenced with all the work before Council, yet it did and the community resources were available.
  • Some believe that work should be prioritised but the methodology chosen is not the most appropriate nor efficient.

Councillors are encouraged to engage in further consultation and discussion in the stakeholder groups and provide input at the next Council meeting on ways to improve the process.

Item 3: GNSO Affirmation of Commitments (AoC) Review Team (RT) Endorsements for Preserving security, stability and resiliency of the DNS (SSR) & Whois Policies

Margie Milam reminded the Council of key dates in the endorsement process.

The first step is the submission of applications for the Security, Stability, Resiliency of the DNS (SSR), and the WHOIS Policy Review Teams, to meet the July 15, 2010 deadline.

The stakeholder groups need to inform the GNSO Council of their endorsements no later than 21 days after the deadline for applications which is 5 August 2010.

The procedural process is that each stakeholder group may endorse one applicant as a candidate for a given review team. The stakeholder group may choose an applicant that has been endorsed by another stakeholder group. Alternatively, the stakeholder groups could choose not to endorse an applicant from the available pool. That might mean that there are less than four endorsed nominees. The stakeholder group could choose to identify in its internal deliberations one or two additional candidates that may be supported to satisfy gender and geographic diversity criteria.

The Council will review the SG endorsements and any additional candidates supported; a 60% vote of each house is required for an additional applicant to be added to the slate of endorsements. The deadline is the end of August to present the slate of GNSO endorsements to the selectors, Rod Beckstrom and the Interim GAC chair, Heather Dryden. It was agreed that 3 August for the 5 August GNSO Council meeting would be an acceptable date to provide the Council with the stakeholder group choices, though Council procedures require documents 8 days prior to a meeting.

Item 4: Whois Studies

Lisa Phifer presented the Council with a brief overview of the study choices.

On request of the Registries Stakeholder Group, Council agreed to defer the motion to the next Council meeting on 5 August 2010.

Stakeholder Groups are encouraged to avail themselves of the Staff offer for additional consultation and information on the studies so that informed decisions can be made at the next Council meeting.

Item 5: Vertical Integration (VI) PDP WG

Margie Milam provided Council with a progress report. A 20 day comment period is expected to open within the next week. Meetings will continue and the working group will review the comments as they are submitted. After the comment period, the working group will submit a report for consideration by the Council with the goal of providing a Council report to the Board by 13 September, 11 days prior to the Board Retreat where the new gTLD Draft Applicant Guidebook will be the main topic.

Item 6: Registration Abuse Policies Working Group Final Report

Marika Konings provided Council with a summary of the recommendations of the Registration Abuse Policies Working Group Final Report

Chuck Gomes suggested that a small group could be formed to draft a proposed approach with recommendations which would include the timing of forming groups to consider the implementation of some of the recommendations in the final report that do not need a policy development process to be initiated.

Action Item:
The GNSO Secretariat will call for volunteers who may be working group, stakeholder group and or Council members to join the group. While he does not have the time to take the lead on this, Chuck volunteered to assist in this effort if needed.

Stéphane van Gelder chaired the next part of the meeting Item 7.

Item 7: Resolution on New gTLD String Similarity Evaluation

Mary Wong proposed an amendment to the motion on the New gTLD Recommendation (as amended 15 July 2010) that was made by Edmon Chung and seconded by Rafik Dammak; Edmon and Rafik accepted the amendment as friendly.

Note: The original motion was discussed in the Council meeting on 20 May and deferred to 10 June. In making the amended motion, Edmon submitted a redline version to the Council list on 2 June 2010
( and Rafik accepted the amendment as friendly on 4 June 2010


  • The Draft Applicant Guidebook, Version 4 does not include an Extended Review option for strings that fail the initial evaluation for confusing similarity and likelihood to confuse;
  • The GNSO Council recognizes that time is of the essence in sending feedback to ICANN staff on the Draft Applicant Guidebook;
  • The IDNG Drafting Team established by the GNSO Council has discussed various circumstances where applicants for strings that may be designated as confusingly similar in the initial evaluation may be able to present a case showing that the string is not detrimentally similar to another string;
  • The GNSO Council in Recommendation #2 on the GNSO Final Report on the Introduction of New gTLDs in September 2007 intended to prevent confusing and detrimental similarity and not similarity that could serve the users of the Internet;
  • A Twenty-one day public comment period was held, comments were received and considered by the Council;


  • The GNSO Council takes action in its meeting of 15 July 2010 to send the letter.


To: Kurt Pritz and members of the ICANN New GTLD Implementation Team,

The GNSO Council requests a change to Module 2 of the Draft Applicant Guidebook. Specifically, we request that the section on "Outcomes of the String Similarity Review" be amended to allow applicants to request an Extended Review under applicable terms similar to those provided for other issues such as "DNS Stability: String Review Procedure". We further request that a section be added on ³String Similarity - Extended Review² that parallels other such sections in Module 2.

This request is seen as urgent because there are conditions under which it may be justified for applicants for a string which has been denied further processing based on confusing similarity by the Initial Evaluation to request an extended evaluation. This Extended Review would evaluate extenuating circumstances in the application which may be such that the similarity is not actually detrimental. This may occur, inter alia, in cases such as:

  • The same Registry Operator (for an existing gTLD or a proposed new gTLD) could apply for a string that is similar to an existing or applied for string in a manner that is not detrimentally similar from a user point of view. For example, it is possible that an applicant could apply for both a gTLD with a conventional ASCII label and a corresponding internationalized gTLD (IDN gTLD) that could be deemed to be similar but not cause the detrimental confusion that the GNSO recommendation was trying to avoid.
  • A situation where there is an agreement between a new applicant Registry Operator and the Registry Operator of an existing gTLD that allows for better service for the users in the geographical area where the new gTLD will be offered. For example, MuseDoma, the Registry Operator for .museum could enter into an agreement with a new gTLD applicant to offer an IDN version of .museum for a specific language community. The two strings might be judged to be similar but their delegation would not cause detrimental confusion.

We thank you for your prompt attention to this GNSO Council request.

The motion carried unanimously in the Contracted Parties House and the motion carried in the Non Contracted Parties House with one abstention.

Jaime Wagner (ISPCP) abstained providing the following reason:

Because there were strong discussions in the ISPCP and though I am in favour, there is some concern about the motion and it is better for me to abstain than express my personal views.

The chair was handed back to Chuck Gomes.

Item 8: Drafting team for draft DNS-CERT/SSR WG charter

Action Item:

Chuck Gomes will follow up with Chris Disspain, the ccNSO Council chair.

Item 9: Audio-casting of Council meetings

The audio casting was implemented through the development of a software program that links the phone bridge to the Web site, which for future meetings requires only dialing into the telephone bridge. Five participants, who included staff, were listening to the audiocast and reported that the sound was clear.

Councillors are urged to contact their appropriate stakeholder groups and constituencies to provide feedback on the advantages of the audiocast for the next Council meeting.

Item 10: Other Business

10.1 Standing committee to monitor GNSO Improvement implementation

Deferred to the next Council meeting on 5 August 2010.

10.2 Update on Councilor and Council Officer Elections Processes

Stakeholder groups and constituencies are encouraged to organise early elections for council representatives, especially in cases where Councilor terms end in December 2010, so that the elections for the Council chair and vice chairs can be handled in a timely manner. Chuck Gomes noted that he is at the end of his second term and will not be eligible for re-election.

Refer to Councilor Term Expiration Report for December 2010.

10.3 Note: Going forward regular WG/WT/DT status updates will be provided in the GNSO Project Status List.

Wolf-Ulrich Knoben asked whether any decision had been made about changing the number of GNSO allocated seats from two to four on the Security, Stability and Resiliency of the DNS Review Team.

Action Item:

Chuck Gomes will follow up with Rod Beckstrom and the Interim GAC chair, Heather Dryden.

There were no further comments or questions.

Chuck Gomes adjourned the GNSO Open Council meeting and thanked everyone for their participation.
The meeting was adjourned at 13:02 UTC.

Next GNSO Council teleconference will be on Thursday, 5 August 2010 at 15:00 UTC.
See: Calendar