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[Membership] forwarded non-member submission

Re: Fishkin Proposal and Transparency
I am somewhat familiar with the model(s) that James Fishkin proposes
to adapt with respect to the purpose and functions of an Internet
Deliberative Council. I do not believe the deliberative council model
is a backward step. I support the idea! However, I respectfully
disagree with professor Fishkin's contemplation that " [w]hile it may
be advisable to keep the names of the members of the Deliberative
Council confidential (so that they can not be overwhelmed by lobbying
by outside special interests), it will be important for purposes of
transparency to make all the discussions public." Semantics aside, it
is not possible to have transparency and opacity at the same time.
Members of the council including or rather especially a deliberative
council, or quasi- Senate must be accountable.. The matter of lobbying
by outside interests illustrates the point. In my view the most
troublesome aspect or "threat" to the council would in fact  be the
capture phenomenon which is, as Fishkin knows,  a complex and subtle
process whereby the regulators themselves become captive to organized
interventions by interested parties and groups. Presumably ICANN
itself is an entity with an interest in the outcomes or policies of a
deliberative council - and therefore the council itself will be
subject to capture from within ICANN. Opacity is not the answer.
Candidates for an Internet Deliberative Council  must be elected by
the stakeholders, which in the case of the ICANN mandate is a rather
large and diverse constituency. I don't want to get into the mechanics
of how the elections ought proceed. That's a subordinate matter. But
the argument that the possibility of outside lobbying warrants a
secret body is a red herring. It is the potential lobbying from inside
that worries me. Therefore: (1) Professor Fishkin's proposal is
rational, democratic and do-able. (2) There MUST be an open election
and we are entitled (all of us) to know who has been elected to
council. (3) Candidates should come forward and nominate themselves.
(4) The risk factors that Fishkin refers to are real - but on balance
the greater risk is to have an opaque Internet Deliberative Council.
(Let's get real here! Somebody is going to know who these persons are!
(5) An ad hoc committee should be formed of ICANN OUTSIDERS  who have
the time, credentials and  general knowledge to devise the means for
an elected council. Such persons will be able to devise
a strategy for dealing with lobbyists. Absent an elected body
professor Fishkin's excellent proposal will have to be thrown out in
favor of an inferior model. That eventuality would be unfortunate. I
invite anybody who wants to take this up with management at ICANN to
get in touch with me. Thank you. Rick Harris (Dr.)