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No NC elections until after Berlin

I want to remind everyone involved in constituency formation that,
by decision of the ICANN Board, there is to be no election of DNSO
Names Council members in Berlin, and certainly not before Berlin
(see attached notice of Esther Dyson, in reply to my call for

From: Michael Sondow <msondow@iciiu.org>
To: Mike Roberts <mmr@darwin.ptvy.ca.us>, Esther Dyson <edyson@edventure.com>,
        ICANN <comments@icann.org>
CC: George Conrades <gconrades@polarisventures.com>,
        Greg Crew <gregcrew@iaccess.com.au>,
        Frank Fitzsimmons <fitzsimmon@dnb.com>,
        Hans Kraaijenbrink <H.Kraaijenbrink@kpn-telecom.nl>,
        Professor Jun Marai <junsec@wide.ad.jp>,
        Geraldine Capdeboscq <geraldine.capdeboscq@bull.fr>,
        Eugenio Triana <etrigar@teleline.es>,
        "Linda S. Wilson" <linda_wilson@radcliffe.edu>,
        Molly Shaffer Van Houweling <msvh@icann.org>,
        "Bret A. Fausett" <baf@fausett.com>,
        "Andrew Q. Kraft" <akraft@association.org>,
        Barbara Dooley <bdooley@cix.org>, "Dr. Lisse" <el@rmi.de>,
        Fay Howard <fay@ripe.net>, Jay Fenello <Jay@Iperdome.com>,
        Jon Englund <jenglund@itaa.org>,
        Jonathan Zittrain <zittrain@cyber.law.harvard.edu>,
        Larry Lessig <lessig@POBOX.COM>, Shari Steele <ssteele@eff.org>,
        Theresa Amato <amato@Essential.ORG>,
        "toml@communisphere.com" <toml@communisphere.com>,
        Troy Davis <troy@nack.net>, Erick Iriarte <faia@amauta.rcp.net.pe>,
        Marty Burack <burack@isoc.org>, Michael Heltzer <mheltzer@inta.org>,
        Joop Teernstra <terastra@terabytz.co.nz>,
        Milton Mueller <mueller@syr.edu>,
        Charles Nesson <nesson@law.harvard.edu>, iciiu@iciiu.org
Subject: Planning for Berlin (NC elections)

Dear Mr. Roberts and Ms. Dyson-

Is the ICANN Board planning to get the DNSO Names Council up and
running in Berlin? If so, you must realize that this is going to be
difficult logistically because it will require nominations and
elections in each newly-formed constituency, for its three NC
members, and if the manner of these elections is not carefully
planned they probably won't take place, or not take place in a
legitimate and sustainable way.

These elections are of great significance because they are the very
first elections conducted under the auspices of ICANN and because
they will be a test of the ability of the Board and the
membership-in-formation to discipline themselves to conduct the
affairs of the DNSO in a coherent way.

There are two major questions that, it seems to me, require
attention and resolution before Berlin:
1) How can the agenda for the three days in Berlin be arranged so
that the election of the constituencies' NC members is accomplished
in a logical and prepared-for way;
2) How can those elections be done so that their outcome is not only
legitimate but seen to be so by the members of ICANN, future as well
as present.

To be unassailable, the nominations and more especially the
elections for NC seats will have to be done so that people not
present in Berlin but who have signed up for the constituencies can
participate. Although a complication, this is unavoidable in view of
the openness and transparency requirements of ICANN and the DNSO. If
the elections are to be legally sustainable, they must be conducted
electronically as well as in person. 

However, despite this difficulty I believe that the elections can be
done in Berlin, through careful planning, a rearrangement of the
agenda, and an awareness on the part of everyone participating of
the need for efficiency.

The Board has asked constituency organizers to submit proposals for
a definition of the constituency they are forming and a procedure
for electing NC seats. This collection of proposals and discussion
of them by the Board is all that can properly be accomplished by it
before Berlin if a fair process is to be maintained, as I argued in
my note on "No rewards for doing wrong". However, it should be
sufficient if Berlin is well orquestrated.

How can the Berlin agenda be arranged best? Here is the ICIIU's
1. Eliminate the General Assembly planned for the afternoon of the
25th. No one will attend such an assembly who isn't in a
constituency, for the simple reason that no one is going to go to
Berlin without the intention of participating in the constituencies.
There is no compelling reason for holding a combined meeting of all
constituencies on the afternoon of the first day. That is something
best left for after the NC elections.
2. Have the Board make a decision on the constituency proposals
immediately after the morning meetings of the constituencies on the
first day. There is no reason why the Board should not be able to
make the necessary decisions since they will have had the various
proposals for some time, and any problems that arise between
organizers should be capable of being worked out at the morning
meetings; that's what they're for. If the Board will do this, then
the constituencies can meet again after lunch to nominate candidates
for NC seats. 
3. The election official or chairperson of each constituency should,
immediately following the nomination of NC candidates on the
afternoon of the 25th, communicate them, and those made prior to the
berlin meeting by persons not attending, by email to all who have
signed up for the constituency but aren't present, requesting that
they return their vote by email within twelve hours. This will be
made much easier and faster, indeed probably cannot be done
otherwise, if someone in each organizing group takes the initiative,
in the week leading up to Berlin, to prepare a list of adherents who
won't be present and advise them of the time-schedule on the 25th.
4. Since the Board has planned an open meeting for the 26th, we
propose that this meeting be done in two parts: from 9 A.M. til
noon, an introductory open Board meeting as planned, followed by
lunch until 1:00 P.M.; then, from 1:00 til 4:00 P.M., reconvening of
the constituencies separately to hold NC elections. Three hours
should be enough time for the elections if they have been prepared
for as above.
5. After the elections, a break from 4:00 until 7:00 for supper,
followed by a short general assembly of all constituencies plus the
Board to officially recognize the Names Council.

Let's run over this again briefly:

- All proposals in to the board in advance of Berlin.

First Day in Berlin (May 25th):
- Constituency meetings the morning of the 25th.
- Lunch.
- Decisions by the Board on constituency definitions and election
procedures early in the   afternoon.
- The rest of the afternoon for nomination of candidates in the
- Email candidates list to adherents not present, requesting an
email ballot back from them within twelve hours.

Second Day in Berlin (May 26th):
- Open Board meeting all morning.
- Lunch.
- Elections of NC seats in the constituencies in the afternoon.
- An early supper.
- Reconvene briefly in general assembly with the Board to have the
Names Council recognized.

Third Day in Berlin (May 27th):
- Meeting of the Names Council in the morning to choose a
chairperson and set a tentative agenda   and timetable.
- Lunch.
- General Assembly of the DNSO, presided over by the new Names
Council, in the afternoon.

This makes sense and can be done. It will be an important step
forward for the DNSO and ICANN. If it isn't done, the Names Council
and the work of the DNSO will have to be postponed for months, at
least until the next meeting of ICANN, and that is simply too long
to wait, as well as unnecessary.

M.Sondow, for the ICIIU

International Congress of Independent Internet Users (ICIIU) 
        http://www.iciiu.org       iciiu@iciiu.org 

From: edyson@edventure.com (Esther Dyson)
To: Michael Sondow <msondow@iciiu.org>
Subject: Re: Planning for Berlin (NC elections)
Date: Sun, 25 Apr 1999 20:24:22 -0400

Thanks for your commments, but I don't understand the reasoning  for not
holding the GA.  Nor do I understand the need for the rush to get this all
done.  THe constituencies need time to organize properly, and I don't think
it's proper to railroad them before they are ready. We are hoping to get
some action, but this seems unduly rigid.