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Putting governments in the non-commercial constituency would seem likely
to lead to a conflict of interest between it and the others listed for
non-commercial. To use recent events as an example, the U.S. government
is officially at odds with most of the academic community on the issue
of encryption, which has significant implications at many levels of the
Internet. The U.S. government is not the only one in the world, but it
is actively trying to persuade other governments to its point of view.
Limiting all non-commercial intersts to 3 votes means that it would be
in governments' interests to make all 3 members of its constituency
government representatives, which would directly limit (maybe even
totally silence) academic voices in the Names Council.
Thus, I suggest that governments be made into their own constituency.
Further, trademark and anti-counterfeiting interests are largely -
possibly even entirely - commercial interests. Making them a separate
constituency would thus seem to primarily serve to double non-Internet
commercial interests' votes. ("Non-Internet" means that their primary
concern is not necessarily the Internet, unlike the registrars,
registries, and ISPs, most if not all of which will probably also be
commercial to some degree.) IMHO, this constituency serves no other
significant purpose (other than to address an issue of importance today,
which will likely fade into obscurity once solved). It would be a
mistake to include this constituency just because of its current
significance, because once the issue does fade, it will likely prove
difficult to remove an established constituency, especially since
another constituency - commercial - will have an active interest in
keeping it around, in order to have more votes for themselves.
Thus, I suggest that the trademark and anti-counterfeiting interests
constituency be removed.
Finally, the commercial constituency would seem likely to be biased
against new members: why should company X allow competitor Y to have a
voice in the Names Council, when company X was about to propose a
standard implementing its development efforts and/or making the Internet
incompatible with competitor Y's products? (In an extreme case,
competitor Y might be turned into a non-commercial interest by going
bankrupt from such actions, thus affirming company X's efforts to
exculde Y from qualifying as commercial.) Similar abuses are possible
in all other constituencies.
Thus, I suggest that there be a procedure to allow the other
constituencies to to grant membership in a constituency to a person or
organization even if the current members of that constituency object.
(Such a step should not be taken lightly, however. Perhaps this should
require a unanimous vote from the Names Council members of the other