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Constituency Meeting ADCOM



Continental Hotel, Suite 2906

Day One : Wednesday, 12 July 2000


A series of ccTLD meetings were held in conjunction with the ICANN meetings in Japan in July.


Chon, Peter de Blanc, Anthony van Couvering, Denis Jennings and Oscar Robles representing Asia Pacific, North America, International Association of Top Level Domains, Europe and Latin America Caribbean Regions.

  1. Sue Leader and Peter Dengate Thrush (.nz), plus a number of others were in attendance, watching the Adcom meet.
  2. Adjoining the suite was a bedroom occupied by Kamchana, who provides the interim secretariat for ccTLD Constituency.
  3. The first point noted was that from 9am to 10am tomorrow was a combined meeting of Adcom with Names Council reps and invited guests from the GAC. The Adcom's working group on redelegation was being chaired by Anthony van Couvering.
  4. Anthony spoke to his redelegation effort, noting that his work linked redelegation to performance under a best-practice doctrine. The key essential of this was the need to solicit opinion and feedback designed to show a responsiveness to the local community. If this was not sought, or not met, it would give reason to query redelegation.
  5. Denis reported large differences between the CENTR approach and that of the GAC. CENTR's best-practice doctrine does not consider there to be a role for the GAC nor one for IANA.
  6. Patricio Poblete joined the meeting - one of ccTLD's Names Council delegates. He noted compliance with local law can be improved with compliance with best-practice, which constituted a major concession to the GAC approach. He noted that the CC administrator has to be local, and thus placing themselves under government control.
  7. There was discussion about the process by which any decisions made at the meeting could be ratified. It was agreed that votes from each individual country code would be required. It was noted there had not been a lot of discussion on the lists, it was often at face to face meetings that people found out what the issues were, heard debate, and were able to take a position.
  8. The meeting agreed to try and get a single document dealing with best practices delegation and redelegation, to be ready for the plenary session scheduled that afternoon.
  9. The Adcom meeting then ended, and we moved into a "pre-meeting" on ICANN funding.
  10. It was reported that 10 CCs had paid up to approximately $100,000. Some are conditional, and some cheques are being held while those conditions are being reported.
  11. It was noted that a good paper trail was needed because of the potential litigation.
  12. We moved into a pre-meeting on the ccTLD constituency by-laws. What was now needed was consensus before putting these to the Board with a request for approval. This was required and would reinforce the standing of the ccTLD constituency.
  13. Kilnam Chon then raised a report on the Secretariat, noting it had been set up and it was necessary to discuss funding it.
  14. Denis Jennings wanted the meeting to be aware of CENTR's unhappiness that the process set up at Cairo had not been followed. He was concerned that it raised issues for the future when decisions of meetings are not followed. The validity of anything being discussed at a meeting now seems at risk. Urgent issues of process and constitution needed to be addressed before funding. Having said that, Center was supportive of the interim secretariat.
  15. Kilnam Chon, in reply, began by reference to a decision taken at the Berlin meeting that face to face meetings were not able to make binding decisions on the ccTLD constituency. There needed to be a formal process including online voting, to take into account the 240 odd potential delegates. It was not possible to get everyone at a face to face meeting. AdCom had, however, adopted a form of procedure of proposing an interim secretariat online, received applications, had voting and decided. It had been an open process, with comment from all.
  16. Patricio Poblete agreed with Denis, and agreed with what had been done but noted that the principle needs to be brought early to people's attention at meetings. People should not be able to leave a meeting with the impression that something has been decided if a further formal process is required.
  17. ADC noted that the minutes of AdCom meetings needed approval.
  18. We were joined at this stage by Andrew McLaughlan and Louis Touton, ICANN staff lawyers. Andrew began by recalling that the GAC had proposed principles for redelegation, defining a role for government. There had been six documents from the ccTLD, the most recent including a delegation/redelegation process.
  19. Separately, the staff had posted a "status quo agreement", to codify existing relationships (IANA/ccTLDs) into a light weight agreement. This was designed to serve until a comprehensive agreement had been defined.
  20. There was no expectation the status quo agreement can be adopted by any party in its current shape. The GAC/CC negotiations were directed at a comprehensive revision.
  21. Louis Touton joined in at this stage and said they had been watching and hearing back from various negotiations. Two things were clear - there were many issues intertwined and in most issues there was broad diversity, needing considerable bridging to get to a consensus.
  22. They were on a "longer road to consensus than we first thought".
  23. Sabine from .germany raised concern about the short notice of the status quo document. It had been issued on a Friday while we were all either preparing to leave or had actually left. Louis Touton apologised and said he wanted to discuss this at a public forum.
  24. Sabine also indicated that the ccTLDs were not happy with ICP1 (the replacement for RFC 1591). This was simply dumped on ccTLDs without comment. Louis Touton agreed that the whole role of these negotiations was to totally replace ICP1 relationship with an agreed one.
  25. We then reverted to a funding pre-meeting, chaired by Peter de Blanc. He indicated that there were three layers of bureaucracy, all of which required funding - ICANN, DNSO, ccTLD constituency.
  26. Unless we can separate the two ideas of -
    1. Whether or not the ccTLDs will make any funding contribution to each of those layers, from
    2. How much of a contribution might be made.
      No progress was likely.
  27. Some things were clear :
    1. No ccTLD wants a "names" tax;
    2. Contributions need to be voluntary;
    3. Several models submitted of diverse variety - new end, number of domain names, and others;
    4. Some ccTLDs are in a "negative position" with respect to funding which would mean they require cash.
  28. As a method of funding, banding seems to be the most approved (including negative funding which equalled a grant). Approximately 10 responses had been received at the Board level, totalling approximately $100,000.
  29. The meeting noted also that 5 delegates from the ccTLDs, representing each ICANN region, attended an unofficial meeting of the President's funding task force at Cairo. They were turned away. There was no subsequent sign of progress.
  30. DNSO funding - Nothing said.
    Funding the ccTLD secretariat: Peter de Blanc suggested that 10% be approved for funding "ICANN" would be appropriate to fund the secretariat. However, he did not say whether this was DNSO funding, ICANN budget funding or ccTLD secretariat funding. (Note this amounts to US$150,000)
  31. It is clear, as he said, that a full time secretariat is required to provide outreach, communication, translation, publication, and all the other necessary jobs.
  32. The meeting in the suite concluded, we crossed town to the Hotel Kaiyogei where, in its Sakura room we began what was described as the ccTLD constituency's plenary meeting.
  33. ccTLD Plenary Meeting : Day One
  34. After a long queuing to get into the room (and the payment of a 5,000 Yen "donation"), we were subjected to ultimately 40 minutes of self introduction as delegates explained who they were and where they were from. By 1.40pm, Kilnam Chon took the chair and began a "timetable" discussion of what we were to achieve that day. Ni Quaynor and Eva Frolich jointly presented a draft paper on a root server service contract. They noted that still a lot was to be added. It had been out for consultation for some time, but few comments had been received. This was a call to action on a particularly crucial issue - what is the service that ICANN is to provide ccTLDs?
  35. Relationship with the ICANN Root Service Committee was also to be followed up. Without much discussion, we moved on to the second presentation from Anthony van Couvering on Best Practice. The same comments as had been made previously were repeated - not a right but a service, continuation dependent on performance. Governments did not have the right to delegate as it saw fit. Only when the incumbent was not doing its job, which meant primarily not doing what the internet community wished. If not, it must solicit, find out and abide it, it must elicit feed back. Whereas the GAC has the government as the focus of appointment, here, ICANN and the ccTLDs are the focus of the delegation process.
  36. After this presentation we moved to funding and noted the range of possible funding models presented in a spreadsheet (see attached). Zeta Wendt (.us) commented that we needed an operational definition of a domain name for all levels of domains. No other decision recorded on funding.
  37. Peter de Blanc then reported on by-laws. Those had been drafted by Ramesh from Malaysia, not then present at the meeting. Peter noted that we needed to codify the membership rules if we are to play the ICANN game. A number of documents had been produced and this was a compilation of them. He noted that critical issues arising from by-laws was the Names Council membership expires next month, elections take one month and it was necessary to have a process in place to deal with that.
  38. ICANN Board elections are due to take place in September and we need Names Council reps in place to vote in that. "We are so late".
  39. The next item on the agenda was the ccTLD secretariat set up and funding. Kilman indicated that this was "sensitive to some of us". A proposal had been given in Egypt, which had then been considered by the Adcom. It had not been fully presented at the Egyptian meeting, even on an interim basis, nor was the financial support. Adcom had put out a request, New Zealand and AFNIC/Thailand had responded, the matter had been considered in an open manner and the AFNIC response had been accepted. The secretariat was interim until the ICANN meeting in November only. There was a condition that when the time came for a permanent organisation it would be released to the new organisation.
  40. The Adcom had realised that many small CCs that were not funded and were not able to come to the Cairo or other face to face meetings, and it was necessary for all decisions at face to face meetings to be put to a vote of the list.
  41. Despite the willingness of amateurs it was a full time job, and the only way to get the job done was to put up the money to do a proper job. Funding was required, and it was thought that approximately US$10,000 per month was required until November.
  42. Fay Howard, of CENTR clarified a misrepresentation made by Chon in his report - the New Zealand proposal had nothing to do with CENTR.
  43. Herbert from .austria complained that he had not been on the mailing list that was used for the election, and wondered how and who was being involved in ccTLD decision making. The response was that the official IATA database had been used. Sabine from Germany wants an official list and there was some discussion about "ccTLD discuss" which was a voluntary list. Fay argued that when she ran the elections for Names Council, which took a considerably longer time than anyone thought, a careful list had been prepared.
  44. Chon confirmed that a best effort had been used and that a full time secretariat would help. There would be further discussion on this topic tomorrow. The interim secretariat would run through November with indication that it would have to set up a basic scheme.
  45. Multi-lingual domain names
  46. This is something of considerable interest to the Asia-Pacific delegates - it is the subject of a separate organisation, but it was not clear that it was something that was supported by the ccTLD constituency as a whole. The delegate from Holland objected to the ccTLD constituency taking a position, commenting that it was presently in the hands of the IETF which was preparing an appropriate technical standard. Until that was done, comment from us was inappropriate.
  47. Uniform dispute resolution policy
  48. Holland again indicated that they did not wish to take part in an UDRP such as presently in place for .com. They could proceed much more rapidly and cheaply before the local courts.
  49. Anthony van Couvering reported that Chris Gibson from WIPO was working on local UDRPs, and was doing a survey on what countries were doing.
  50. Fay reported that Center's Legal and Regulatory Affairs Committee was working with WIPO on a new solution, which needed local tailoring. She reported also that the GAC has asked WIPO to prepare UDRPs for ccTLDs.
  51. Chon indicated that a work shop in Los Angeles might be appropriate.
  52. Maruyama (from .jp) reported that there had been considerable development in Japan, including working with the Bar Association, patent attorneys and others and were about ready to start their own DRP, doctored to local law, due for start in October. WIPO was interested. It was very important he said to work on education of panelists. WIPO was willing to help educate new panelists, and there was lots to report.
  53. Paul Kane (Names Council rep for Registrars) said he had found ADR very helpful over two years so there needed to be a part of the registration contract to bind the local law or arbitration. It takes time, and in particular one has to notify all previous registrants of the new process. Its most important feature was against the registry and the registrars outside the scope of liability. He thought it was a suitable topic to put on a discuss list to see if there was sufficient interest in a workshop.
  54. "Status quo" document
  55. Denis Jennings reported that CENTR had responded to ICANN formally by giving the opinion the document was a "start".
  56. IATLD has responded also.
  57. After the break we resumed discussion of the root server service committee. Peter de Blanc said he had looked at ITU standard 1016 on service level agreements in relation to the availability of long distance calls and was of some assistance.
  58. Holland reported that IETF No. 41 on best practices had been in discussion for one and a half years on root servers.
  59. Bill Semich said that it needed "fast tracking" from IANA. Center said that they had done some work on turn around time. Sabine wanted documentation as to exactly where the root servers were, and who do we contact in the event of failure? Denis Jennings reported that CENTR wanted it provided under a contract. PDT (.nz) reported there seemed to be two issues-
    1. regular polling to ensure that any SLAs agreed were actually being met; and
    2. a dispute resolution mechanism was required - what would occur if one ccTLD was getting service problems others were not getting?
  60. Denis Jennings felt that the reports of the IETF discussion should be brought to ccTLD manager's attention. Sue Leader (.nz) said that we should keep the RFCs until appropriate discussions about placing them occurred.
  61. Elizabeth Porteneuve (France) said that we needed statistical auditing of root server performances against which to measure contractual performance and we needed economical and statistical surveillance. Cyprus warned that our clients may require the same service from us that we required of ICANN (!); Zimbabwe reported that we don't need each root server to be active 100% of the time, it is the combined service which requires 100% of up time.
  62. We resumed then on best practice/ delegation redelegation. Sue read into the record the NZ position from the Wellington Summit meeting.
  63. Denis Jennings from Ireland believed that it had never crossed John Postel's mind that IANA would have any continuing authority at all over .ie. He asked if ICANN is to be a regulatory authority, how is it to be regulated, and by what court and under what law?
  64. Stephano Trumpi (.italy) asked who was the relevant government. The process looked at technical issues, but it did not solve internal political process. The precise proposal focused on how to engage and define government which was to prevent ICANN from dealing directly with governments.
  65. Peter DT (.nz) said there are three issues -
    1. Content. It was necessary in preparing the CC position to go carefully through the GAC principles, and to ensure that each concern was dealt with (he offered to help with this).
    2. Presentation. It was necessary to do at least a good "power point" or other formal presentation for the Board. (He offered Sue Leader's help in that preparation).
    3. Process. It was necessary to get unanimous support for our position from the DNSO, then from the ISO and PSO, as the Board was obliged to follow the policy directives of its support organisations, under the by-laws.
  66. The delegate from Bouskina Faso had a particular problem and Howell Carrol (.nu) indicated that we needed a fail safe in case a country's laws changed. As presently drafted, one was required to follow local law. If the government changed the local law, then simply not following that was a prima facie breach and was the basis for redelegation. Protection against that was required.
  67. ccTLD Constituency by-laws
  68. We began having a look at these and noted that there were a number of inconsistencies and examples of poor drafting. Fay Howard and PDT spent some time in the adjoining foyer starting a redraft of the by-laws to take care of some of these problems.
  69. We returned to the meeting as it discussed, again, multi-lingual domain names. Chon was stressing that it had started in Cairo, but was forced to concede that no work had been done, and there had been no contributions by ccTLD members. He proposed an information or first working group. Sue Leader (.nz) asked what it would do, to which the response was that it would survey what was already happening in different countries. For example, 500,000 MLDs were already operating in Korea and China.
  70. PDT indicated that as no work had been done, that might indicate that it meant nothing to most ccTLDs. As the IETF was already doing this work, we should need good reason to interfere. Others indicated if the IETF could not supply a technical solution, there was no point in providing policy. Chon indicated that the NSI was about to issue a proprietary technology to do a multi-lingual domain name in .com. Eva Frolich (.SE) said it wouldn't work, as servers couldn't read multi-national characters. PDT (.nz) said that we must be very careful not to get involved in what might be a commercial competition and must ensure that the technology solution was provided first, then we could turn our attention to policy which was our proper goal.
  71. Eva indicated that we needed to promote the IETF work and said that it was going in the right direction, and that it was too early to start on policies. Chon again insisted that NSI was about to release something which he was confident would depart from any IETF standards. He recommended again the scheduled workshop on Monday be developed into a workshop in LA. However, the consensus of the meeting was that there should be no working group until after the IETF standard on multi-level domain language was drafted. Sue Leader undertook to draft appropriate wording to reaffirm ccTLD constituency support of IETF. [Statement adopted]
  72. The first day closed at around 6.30pm
  73. We then had a short break, and reconvened in the suite to meet with Andrew McLaughlin and Louis Touton on the "Status Quo" document. All ccTLDs were angry, some were outraged at the timing and at the excuses given by the staff for its late performance. The staff explained that the deadline originally imposed for comment was now lifted. PDT (.nz) asked why we should continue discussing it when ICANN had said it would not sign in its present format, and there was no deadline. The staff originally began by saying that ccTLDs had requested this at Cairo. PDT (.nz) responded that all those who had requested it could take it up, but there appeared to be none in the room or even in Yokohama who felt they had requested this. Then Louis suggested it was an attempt to bridge the gap between the ccTLD and GAC position. At this stage PDT (.nz) indicated considerable annoyance. Whereas we had previously been disinterested in the staff effort, it was now plain that they were attempting to interfere in our processes. It was clear that ccTLD constituency was working on its own draft on the process, and the timing of the staff draft could only be seen as mischievous. At this stage most of us left the meeting, although others carried on to discuss different matters with the staff.
    Day Two: Thursday, 13 July 2000
  75. The meeting reconvened at the Pacifico Ballroom East from 9am until 6pm.
  76. Basically, the same general items as had been received the day before were discussed again. The same reports were presented by their authors with further discussion. Delegation, best practices and funding occupied much of the day.
  77. A small difference was that Paul Twomey, Chairman of the Government Advisory Committee was invited to participate in an early part of the session concerning delegation and redelegation.
  78. There was a general feeling at the conclusion of the day's meeting that progress had been too slow with no visible outcome. I suggested that we should be working from the beginning with a view to providing a formal communique of ccTLD positions (a la the GAC), and/or formal resolutions (a la the ICANN Board).
  79. Chon's comment was that members seemed to feel that a more powerful executive committee was required rather than the "facilitative" body which he appeared to think described the present AdCom.
  80. Sabine (.ge) agreed that we had a problem in relation to members not present, but insisted that we should be able to make pronouncements on behalf of those who are here that they at least have agreed on something.
  81. In summary, Sue and I took an active part, and were well-supported in the interventions made.
  82. Towards the close of the delegation / redelegation meeting I made a number of points which were well received.
  83. The first was that the meeting as the ccTLD constituency of the DNSO meant that our only power was to make recommendations to the Names Council. There, our recommendations took their place along with those from the other seven constituencies. This is most inappropriate in relation to the CCs major structural role in ICANN, and its contribution to the internet globally.
  84. The second was that we had previously been invited by the staff to form an association that could negotiate on a "peer" basis with the ICANN staff. I invited those interested in the formation of such an organisation to join me for lunch. A delegation of approximately 15 to 20 took up that invitation and expressed itself keen on one of two alternatives -
    1. Forming an entirely new body; and
    2. Reorganising the existing ccTLD constituency by means of by-law amendments, to function in both capacities (ie as a constituency of the DNSO, and, when required, as a separate negotiating body).
  85. Later discussions with ICANN legal staff, the CEO, and representatives of other constituencies indicate reasonable interest in the concept.

© 2000 The Internet Society of New Zealand
Last updated 2 August 2000

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