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RE: [ga] At Large Board Seat

  • To: <karl@xxxxxxxxxxxx>, "'Danny Younger'" <dannyyounger@xxxxxxxxx>
  • Subject: RE: [ga] At Large Board Seat
  • From: "Roberto Gaetano" <roberto@xxxxxxxxx>
  • Date: Sat, 26 Sep 2009 23:17:57 +0200

Karl Auerbach wrote:

> >
> > The Board received an update from Staff regarding the Board review 
> > Working Group recommendation for the inclusion of a voting director 
> > appointed from the At Large. The Board discussed some potential 
> > implementation hurdles that must be resolved, though 
> recognized that 
> > approving of the recommendation in principle would then 
> allow for the 
> > planning of the implementation.
> Which is slightly at odds with the fact that we (the "Working 
> Group") recommended *two* voting seats not a singular "a 
> voting director".

We are talking about two different WGs. The matter was further discussed by
the Board Review WG, where there was a report from the BCG on the table
recommending the reduction of the size of the Board. The only possible
mediation among the different positions (no AtLarge voting seat, two AtLarge
voting seats, reduction of the size of the Board, ensure a majority of the
NomCom appointees over the SO/AC appointees) was to keep the size as is,
convert the ALAC Liaison into a voting position, maintain the number of
NomCom appointees. This was the compromise solution found, and as all
compromise solutions has the merit of having something for everybody, but
the problem of not giving anybody the full extent of their requests.

> Although I don't remember the exact words we used, our intent 
> was that the "at large" mean the broad community of internet 
> users, not merely the ALAC, and that the mechanism of choice 
> be something in which the members of that larger community 
> have have, in some cumulative way yet to be designed, to pick 
> and choose the people to be seated.
> In my own mind it seems to me that we opened the door to the 
> ALAC to make a definite and detailed proposal of how that may 
> work.  I have been disappointed, but unfortunately, not 
> surprised, to see nothing.  In this absence "staff" has been 
> handed a blank sheet of paper on which it can expand in any 
> and all directions.
> The ALAC still has time, but not much time, to draw some 
> faint containment lines on that sheet.

The clear message from the Board Review WG, received by the Board, is that
ALAC has to come with a proposal, that has to be accepted by the Board. I
personally do not think that the process will be very fast, as I expect
consultation via the RALOs with the local communities, and this might take
months. Again, on a personal level, I believe that it would make sense to
have a proposal discussed and approved in early 2010, targeting a seating at
the 2010 AGM at the very latest. If it comes earlier, so much the better.

> In our working group I felt that this issue needed a broader 
> field, that the question of publicly seated directors needed 
> to address, or to my mind "redress", the nominating committee 
> system, the question whether the President should have an 
> automatic voting seat on the board (I've always felt that 
> that was a very wrong choice), elimination of the 
> misconceived ombudsman, a requirement to re-enact (or not) 
> decisions of the past (such as the UDRP) so that the public 
> directors can finally have a voice in the decision, etc.

There are a lot of issues where no decision is possible as of today. My
choice, as chair of that WG, has been to postpone the incomplete or
controversial items to Review V.2, but to close on the items where a
consensus on a compromise proposal could be reached. This has allowed the
declaration of principle on an ALAC voting seat, and more items for Board
decision in the next few weeks, as well as a public discussion on the
finalized report in Seoul.
After that, my successor will take over, and I sincerely hope that he/she
can push the review further, but at least we have in Seoul some milestones
(Knowing, of course, that for some this will be anyway too little and too


>               --karl--

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