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    ICANN Bid for Independent Status Gets Cool Reception | Log in/Create an Account | Top | 25 comments | Search Discussion
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    Re:Pick up the phone!
    by Kieren McCarthy on Sunday April 22 2007, @02:13AM (#16944)
    User #4206 Info
    You've hit on something here Ed that I am still trying to work out how to deal with.

    Namely, how do you know what impact, if any, particular public comments have had on the finished product?

    If you look at it from the most positive perspective i.e. that every comment contributed is discussed at length by whatever group of people are looking at the issue in hand -- how does that group get across that it has considered every piece?

    The first solution that jumps to mind is that every comment is printed out and then gone through in the meeting. But you can see how if this was the set approach how it could very rapidly get out of hand and the meeting become stilted.

    Equally can or should ICANN mandate how meetings are carried out? Seems a bit controlling and unhelpful.

    But there needs to be some kind of system because if you assume the worst case scenario where the comments are ignored, such a system would mean that this wasn't possible and all comments would have to be involved in the process.

    The question I suppose is: what is the system by which you can demonstrate that everything has been considered without making it a chore or cumbersome or reducing the efficiency of the actual meeting?

    Is it a matter of staff producing a summary of comments and then making that publicly available plus insisting on open discussion of that document by the committee?

    Or is there a technological solution where comments can be ticked off, brief comments added online to explain the committee's feelings?

    Any and all suggestions welcome. I'm sure I can persuade someone to try out a pilot if I get such a system in place.

    Kieren
    [ Reply to This | Parent ]
    Re:Pick up the phone! by Kieren McCarthy
    Re:Pick up the phone!
    by ehasbrouck on Sunday April 22 2007, @09:27PM (#16946)
    User #3130 Info | http://hasbrouck.org
    Kieren asks, "how do you know what impact, if any, particular public comments have had on the finished product?"

    The first step is to observe the discussion: read the mailing list of the body that is supposed to "consider" the comments. Observe or audit their meetings. Read their correspondence, minutes, and other documents.

    If you can -- which with ICANN you usually can't. Does this commitee have a mailing list? Is it public? Even the Board of Directors doesn't have a public mailing list, although there have been repeated public mentions of the fact that they do have a (private) mailing list. Making Board discussions transparent would be a good place to start.

    "How does that group get across that it has considered every piece?"

    The way to get that across is to allow the public to observe its decsion-making process.

    "Can or should ICANN mandate how meetings are carried out?"

    Yes, ICANN's Bylaws do (and I think they should) mandate that ICANN *and* its subsidiary bodies must operate "to the maximum extent feasible" in an open and transparent manner. ICANN has to begin to engage with the meaning of that clause, especially the words "maximum extent feasible".

    If someone asks to see documents, or to observe or audit a meeting, ICANN is required to allow that.

    "Seems a bit controlling and unhelpful."

    If that's what you think, propose that the Bylaws be changed. In the meantime, it's your duty, like that of all ICANN Board members, officers, and staff, to act according to the Bylaws.

    "The question I suppose is: what is the system by which you can demonstrate that everything has been considered?"

    Make the process transparent. It would be a radical change for ICANN, but it's pretty simple to implement, *if* ICANN wants to do it.

    "... insisting on open discussion of that document by the committee?"

    All discussion of any document by any ICANN committee must be open.

    "I'm sure I can persuade someone to try out a pilot if I get such a system in place."

    I look forward to seeing that happen. Start with opening up the non-transparent mailing lists and meetings, and designating points of contact for requests for documents and records.
    [ Reply to This | Parent ]
    Re:Pick up the phone!
    by Kieren McCarthy on Sunday April 22 2007, @10:05PM (#16947)
    User #4206 Info
    Here we go again. Trying to rile me personally before embarking on a tedious moan about what ICANN did in the past. And all written under rather childish anonymity.

    Is this is the quality of your input, I'd not be in the least surprised if it was disregarded.

    When are people going to grow up a bit and start working on solutions rather than moaning about the old days from the touchlines? Let it go.

    Kieren
    [ Reply to This | Parent ]
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