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[Membership] ICIIU Comments on M.A.C. Recommendations of 4-26-99

Comments on the Recommendations of the Membership Advisory Committee
of 26 April 1999 (http://cyber.harvard.edu/rcs/alp-comment.htm)

Principles of the At-large Membership

2.  At-large membership is open to both individuals and
organizations, however, no organization that has a right to
designate or otherwise directly vote for an SO Director may register
as an at-large Member.  “Organization” shmean any institution
officially recognized as a legal persona under the laws of the
nation where it claims legal residence.  Individuals who are members
of the SOs or their constituencies are welcome to join the
at-largemembership.  The most feasible protection against capture by
interests that are not representative of the the user
community at large is to enroll as many Members as possible. 

Comment: Where does this leave the ICIIU? We are signing people up
for the Non-Commercial Domain Name Holders constituency of the DNSO,
since we believe that at least some Internet-related non-profit
organizations represent users and therefore should have a voice in
that constituency; but at the same time it would seem that our place
is in the At-Large membership, by this definition of it. How do we
resolve this problem? Should we drop out of the NCDNHC, and wait to
become part of the At-Large membership? Wouldn't it be a mistake to
leave the DNSO entirely in the hands of organizations, and
commercial ones at that? At the same time, isn't it wrong for a
strictly independent user-oriented entity like the ICIIU not to be
involved in the At-Large membership? How can we solve this?

3.  It is not recommended that membership fees be assessed at this
time.  If membership fees should be assessed in the future, they
shall reflect the economic differences of the various geographic

Comment: As in our commentary to the previously posted M.A.C.
recommendations, we believe it is a mistake not to charge membership
fees as this will make it virtually impossible to define the
membership or deal with it administratively, and we strongly feel
that an individual who does not make at least a token financial
commitment to the organization will not take membership responsibly.

9.  At-large voting shall be on the principle of
one-person-one-vote.  An organization shall be limited to casting
one vote on behalf of the entire organization.  Individuals who vote
for SO Directors in their capacity as representatives of SO-member
organizations shall also have a right to vote for at-large Directors
in their personal capacity as at-large Members.

Comment: This is, in our opinion, an unworkable method of voting. It
will permit the election of At-Large directors who have won only a
very small percentage of the votes (a candidate could be elected
with, say, five votes if all others have only four or less, in a
membership of hundreds), and it paves the way for ballot-box
stuffing by large organizations or companies who send their members
or employees to the At-Large membership only for taking part in the
voting (which is also favored by the lack of membership dues).
Although these provisions of the M.A.C. may be motivated by popular
and democratic ideals, we believe they will in practice have the
opposite effect from the one they were designed to accomplish.

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