ALSC publishes Final Draft
Date: Tuesday August 28 2001, @02:43AM
Topic: Membership Issues

tlr writes "ICANN's At-Large Membership Study Committeee has published a Final Draft on the ICANN At-Large membership (e-book version). Their suggestion is to create an At Large Supporting Organization (ALSO) which consists of (apparently paying) individual domain name holders.

The ALSO would be based on six (!) geographic regions, with six elected directors serving on the board. For each region, the five candidates with the next highest number of votes are suggested to form a regional at-large council.

[As this means the end-user elected directors will remain a minority, it represents a major step backward from the 50% representation that was THE essential part of selling the ICANN idea to the Internet community in the first place, I for one, feel quite cheated by this proposal. Five directors or six makes no real difference if you remain a minority.-mf]"

[It's also notable the proposed geographic areas, like the current ones, represent population and land well, but don't reflect (current) registration patterns particularly well. That's a tough call, albeit not necessarily a wrong one.

A final decision, presumably one entombing forever the idea that end-users should have equal representation with the corporatist interests represented in the three 'functional constituencies', is expected at November's meeting in LA.-mf]

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Re: ALSC publishes Final Draft
by AlanDavidson ( on Tuesday August 28 2001, @03:10AM (#2043)
User #3014 Info |
It is quite useful that the At-Large Study Committee released its report well in advance of the Montevideo meeting. At first glance, major features of the report include:
* Creation of an "ALSO" membership organizaton
* Reduction in number of At-Large directors from 9 to 6
* Direct elections for At-Large Directors by members
* Membership limited to domain name holders
* Membership fee (unspecified amount, no sliding scale proposed)
* Six geographical regions for ICANN (Asia split)

Some elements of the report are quite helpful, including the acknowledgement of ICANN's "public interest" role and the need for individual user participation. The comments on creating a more vital membership organization and endorsing democratic elections are also quite good.

Other parts of the report will trouble some people. Reducing the number of At-Large Directors to 6 from 9, for example, means that Bylaws revisions (which require 2/3 of the Board to approve) could occur without the consent of those Directors. This had previously been viewed as a bedrock guarantee of some importance.

Limiting membership to domain name holders raises many questions. Who is a domain name holder? (The report defines "individual domain name holders" in such as way that organizations would appear to be able to vote through their designated contact person.) Will companies with many domains be able to cast many votes? Is this a fair structure for representation of the broader public? Note that DNS holders as a group appear to be largely made up of the very organizations and interests already well-represented in the SOs.

No doubt this is the beginning of a long discussion. The NGO and Academic ICANN Study (, of which I am a part, will be releasing its Final Report on Friday. That report will take a slightly different approach. We look forward to comments as well.

- Alan Davidson
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Re: ALSC publishes Final Draft
by fnord ( on Friday August 31 2001, @09:41AM (#2083)
User #2810 Info
Karl Auerbach has some things to say.

I fail to see how an @large of 6 will be an improvement on 5. The 5 existing BoD members don't vote as a bloc, how would having one more seat make a difference? Even 9 seats might not make much difference. The entities now (often wrongly) in control of ICANN can and do often vote as a bloc when looking out for their self interests. -g

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Re: ALSC publishes Final Draft
by rforno ( on Tuesday August 28 2001, @04:24AM (#2046)
User #2832 Info |
Yet another bureaucracy built to support another bureaucracy. ICANN is going to be successful PRECISELY because it's so convoluted and the only folks that can decipher it are full-time lawyers and DNS analysts. If this was a for-profit, you can bet there'd be DoJ actions for antitrust and/or anticompetitive practices, despite what ICANN's claims are to the contrary, that they exist for the good of the internet community at large.
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Re: ALSC publishes Final Draft
by alan on Tuesday August 28 2001, @09:00PM (#2048)
User #2877 Info
Perhaps this is the idea? Further dilute the individual voices by mixing in a bunch of other interests?
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