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[Membership] Re: A Model for Community & Global Governance

Dear Joop,

ICANN has the difficult job of determining voter qualifications. Some
people are qualified, others aren't. In my country 500,000 people lost
their lives in a civil war over who can and who can't vote.

I'm suggesting ICANN maintain a Certification process that accepts ICANN
members~voters only from ISPs that provide a minimum quality of service.
I'm suggesting that this include universal email accounts and access to
a Community Service Tier. (This should be a near term standard with
waivers based on economic hardship considered.)

This might require that ICANN tell the dictator in the Land of Oz that,
because of the exclusionary access practices of their proposed
"Certified ISP", Oz will not be considered as a provider of bona fide
voters for the election of ICANN's At Large Governors.

Communities claiming bona fide voters without these minimums would be
sent a note from ICANN saying: "Sorry, but our standards require
universal access to email accounts and a Community Service Tier.
Enclosed is a booklet entitled Becoming Part of the Enlightened World
which details the steps a community must take to qualify their residents
to vote for ICANN's Governors."

Interspersed comments follow.

JO>At 05:31 22/02/99 -0500, Tom Lowenhaupt wrote:

TL>>I created the model because ICANN is looking for a mechanism to
TL>>facilitate electing At-Large members to the Board of Governors. The
TL >>model provides bona fide voters.

TL >>An ICANN link with local governments that certify Internet users is
TL >>way to organize a global voting list. I suspect that a year 2000
TL >>election following the model I outlined would offer hundreds of
TL >>bona fide Internet users.

TL >>It might not be the final solution but a good second step.

JO>Hello Tom,

JO>Good thing that you braced yourself.  You have obviously given good thought
JO>about your model for a cyber-neighbourhood, but the idea of local
JO>governments certifying internet users or ICANN voters is probably an
JO>afterthought.  A bad one, IMHO.

I don't see it as a cyber-neighborhood. We're still a bricks, mortar,
air, and DNA based community. This cyber stuff is going to help and hurt
our efforts to become a great place to live. My hope is more help than
hurt. But that's dependent on how we integrate it into the workings of
the neighborhood. Good governance mechanisms for the Internet might

JO>With all due respect, Tom, have you experienced much of the world outside
JO>NY City?

Shucks no Joop. Rarely been off the block. But I've learned how to read
and look at pictures.

JO>Not everywhere you find the enlightened attitude that you and perhaps under
JO>guidance, your local community Board, display towards the Net. In many
JO>places, on-line gatherings of locals are seen as a threat to the local

Joop, I've been spending too much of my time on these lists lately and
have lost track of the pettiness and puffery that exist in the real
world. Thanks for reminding me that they still exists "out there".

JO>Local Governments in many places are the worst talent-pools of puffed-up
JO>bureaucratic self-importance that you can find. Especially in countries
JO>where Central Government leaves very little of importance for local
JO>government to decide.

Determining the appropriate level of government to select the Certified
ISP is going to be a bitch. The closer to the people the better in my
opinion. ICANN's Government Advisory Committee might have a role for
itself here.

JO>To give such people the power to certify or to withhold certification to
JO>internet users will be abhorrent to all that are familiar with such local
JO>councils or their employees.

JO>Just think of a municipality somewhere in the Third world, where the son of
JO>the mayor runs the only ISP/cybercafe...

If the ISP/cybercafI didn't meet the minimums, ICANN would say - SORRY,
read the booklet.

JO>Why empower unnecessary layers of incompetent (or corrupt, at worst)
JO>bureaucracy, when millions of internet users have already certified
JO>themselves by registering a Domain Name?

Other voter qualification methods might be established as well. Maybe
owning a Domain Name is another category of bona fide voters; although
property ownership is pretty much scorned in my country as a voter
qualification test.



Tom Lowenhaupt

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