Transcript Cairo public forum, 6 November 2008
We would like our ICANN members to take the stage, please, so we can begin our public forum. Again, if the ICANN board members could take their places on the stage, our chairman would like to begin the second portion of a public forum. Again, would the ICANN board please take their seats at the head table so that we can begin our portion of the public forum. Thank you. Welcome again, chairman, board of directors, ICANN, Peter Dengate Thrush.
>> PETER DENGATE THRUSH: Thank you. Could you turn the microphone up. Thank you, thank you. Welcome back. I hope the coffee was sustaining you, we now have a short period until lunch and to make it easier for public comment, we are dispensing with any further reporting. The reports of staff are available on the Web site. You've had many conversations with them during the course of the afternoon sessions anyway so I'm declaring the public comment period open. We have a roving microphone delivered by staff if you have a comment about any topic, you have a chance. I see Andy Van Couvering (phonetic) wishing to make a comment.
>> Thank you, thank you, Peter, thank you, what portion of the board is here. I've been very interested in the new gTLD process and I thank the staff for the enormous amount of work they've done and I'm very pleased to see that we're finally moving forward on this. I also appreciate that this is in many ways an objective process so that if you do complete the application properly, your TLD will be approved. However, at the core of this process is one of the most subjective process -- one of the most subjective decisions that can be made which is that your application is evaluated by a panelist. We do not know who that panelist is. We do not know his or her qualifications, and we do not know his or her instructions from the staff. So for instance, with regard to financial stability, do you have the foundation to actually do this. I represent NYC, I have three budgets that I take to the investors. One is the rice and beans budget. One is the reasonable budget. One is the fully loaded budget that I would give to venture capitalists. Which one do I submit to ICANN? How does this panelist know that this is reasonable? How do I have any expectation of success or knowledge of whether my application will succeed based from this one panelist, especially with no communication back and forth, a single chance for review, and I could spend a lot of money and a lot of time and face a rejection. So I think this is highly subjective, and I would like to see some more clear criteria around this. I think it's a big risk, I think it's -- I know that more than $185,000, this is scaring people away. There's simply no way to communicate surety to an investor. Thank you.
>> PETER DENGATE THRUSH: Thank you, Andrew. The question, as I take it, we'll try to get an answer if we could get one quickly. The question seemed to be what are the evaluation criteria used in the evaluations. Kurt, are you able to give us sort of a five-line answer to that. Microphone, 1, please. microphone 1, please.
>> KURT PRITZ: Yes, very briefly, because we don't have time -- and I'd be happy to take any questions offline -- is that ICANN certainly -- ICANN intends to post a public tender to solicit the dispute resolution providers and that will be a public process so those who are retained to evaluate applications also, so the evaluation process tender process will be very public, and those who are providing the service will be known to the applicants. The second point is certainly the evaluation is a balancing between very objective criteria, which cannot scale with business models, in an attempt to create scalable criteria to accommodate different business models and different economic situations. We think essentially the evaluation and passing the evaluation is, you know, not a very high bar and that the applicant should have a high degree of surety going in whether its application will be accepted.
>> PETER DENGATE THRUSH: Thanks, Kurt. Can we move next.
>> Number 4.
>> AIZU IZUMI: Hello. My name is Aizu Izumi. I'm the outgoing member of the At-Large Advisory Committee after five years, and it's been a real interesting challenge with the Mr. Hamadoun Toure, secretary-general, mentioning the interesting process of the civil society, because I was there in Tokyo when he talked about this NGO. I would like to make some friendly amendment to the fact what he's mentioned. It was not the government of Taiwan who was claiming as an NGO. That was not a dispute at all. The comment with China asked the adoption of the U.N. rules and procedures and requested NGOs be by the Taiwanese government. It wasn't the rule of the Chinese government to do so when they went to negotiation. I was there to be the part of the negotiation and finally reached a compromise. So, but all in all, the civil society [inaudible] and elsewhere have made a great effort to make the process a really multistakeholder event. And it was an uphill battle. And we tried to make something similar to what we exercise here at ICANN, that in the end, perhaps the civil society obtained somewhat a similar place or role within this, just like the GAC in ICANN. I don't think we still have a level playing field. Just one comment on the ccTLD item again. Being a member of the individual users committee, I would like to ask all the people involved during the distribution of the organization, the registration of the governments or the users, to please listen to the individual users' voices in your own countries in the process of selecting the registry or how to operate that. In Japan, as I mentioned already, the government are starting the formal procedure to discuss these and make an open sort of process that the trade associations, the business associations, as well as the consumer groups and academia and experts all invited in public process with public comments to reach a consensus with next year's introduction. And I think something similar could be shared, even though it's under the sovereignty of each nation. I think the users, among others, have the right and obligation to participate into the processes. Thank you very much.
>> PETER DENGATE THRUSH: Thanks. Could we go down here, please, number two.
>> STEPHEN KELLEY: My name is Stephen Kelley, I'm here on behalf of Far Further, a U.S. organization and a gTLD initiative. We are immensely grateful for the opportunity that ICANN is carefully and cautiously orchestrating. We have to acknowledge that without your effort and that of your staff, this room would likely be empty and we would be pursuing other initiatives and opportunities that may be less exciting and less financially appropriate than what we have here before us today. However, among our investors, among our constituents, our council, even our employees, we, among others, share a great concern over the current and proposed draft guidebook and certain financial ambiguities and operational instances that are stated within it. As hard as you have worked to bring us here, we have worked very hard for a number of years to follow you here. And we want to continue doing that within, as we all acknowledge, a difficult and ever-changing global economic environment. As that changes, it is even more important that we establish something within this organization that is consistent, that we can rely upon, and not worry about any change tomorrow. As you report to your people, we report to our people. And to do so with ever-changing ideas and concepts, a different and perhaps delayed schedule makes it difficult on those organizations, we -- to do exactly in this marketplace for ICANN and global Internet community that ICANN seeks. So we would like to present to you a compelling argument, simply by our presence here, that we need to move forward, without further delay, with a clean and unambiguous document that favors the end result that we all want to reach. And do so in a very efficient and prudent economic fashion. And that, to us, means no further delay in the process implementing or accepting applications within the soonest or the earliest possible quarter, without the risk of it being delayed another quarter or another two quarters. Having said that, we want to leave you with our best wishes and greatest regards.
>> PETER DENGATE THRUSH: Thank you for that. And thank you for coming and taking part in the process. We tend to hear a lot from people who want the process to be slow on -- we'll keep going down that line for a while.
>> MARCUS FAURE: Marcus Fauve, CORE. Sorry for my untimely comment earlier. Like others here, I would like to talk about the draft RFP. We've heard that there's some concern regarding numbers. I would not like to concentrate so much on the 185 application fee, although we think it's an issue. It's more about the 75 recurring annual fee that is the minimum payment that ICANN has envisioned. CORE is convinced that although a limit of this magnitude will only allow two kinds of applicants.
>> PETER DENGATE THRUSH: Just speak up a little. Get the microphone a little bit closer. Thank you.
>> MARCUS FAURE: CORE is convinced that those kind of minimum yearly payment will only allow two kinds of applicants. One applicant with a hail Mary bank roll, and, B, copies of the dot com model. As the rest of the document clearly addresses a larger variety of models, this point should be made consistent as well. So we have taken the initiative to develop a model that addresses this. I don't want to go into the details here, but the basic idea is that as long as the registry has an income of less than $1 million, it should be considered to be in survival mode, and ICANN should only charge its costs that are directly related to TLD operations, such as the IANA function. When it crosses this line, ICANN should also be allowed to consider its overhead costs, such as meetings like this one. Doug Brent has given us a bit of his time which we have used to present our model. And he said that at first glance, what we developed seems to make sense. And, therefore, I would like to propose that ICANN allows us to work directly with the staff to achieve a viable and timely solution for this question. We at CORE to like to avoid a situation where people feel that after five years, the result of the new gTLD process is just a monetary shootout or, looking at our meeting schedule, a Mexican standoff. CORE is, like ICANN, a nonprofit organization with the aim to improve the TLD space. And we would be eager to work with you and offer our help to add a little registry perspective to the process. So I'm asking for your kind consideration of our proposal. Thank you.
>> PETER DENGATE THRUSH: Thank you. And behind you, sir.
>> MASON COLE: Thank you very much. My name is Mason Cole. I represent oversee.net, a U.S.-based company in the domain name space. We have over 200 employees. I have a general comment about a growing concern that I and some of the other in the room have with ICANN policy development process. For companies that are in our industry, ICANN has effectively, even though it's not intended, to become a regulator. ICANN created our industry. It's encouraged competition in our industry. And as a result, ICANN has a responsibility to our industry. But increasingly, unfortunately, ICANN has sought to enact rules that, if implemented, would dramatically impact our and other businesses, often without significant metrics or without any basic research or evidence to support the effort. The -- Excuse me. The problem behind these proposals is invariably a perception of harm that may or may not actually exist. So, surely, community members who are interested in changing policy owe it to the companies and the registrants to do some basic research to have fact-based rather than opinion-based policy development. So in creating competition in the industry, I would encourage that ICANN continue to allow the latitude for competition to exist in our industry. Thank you very much.
>> PETER DENGATE THRUSH: Thank you. And behind you.
>> PAUL STAHURA: I am Paul Stahura, the founder of eNOM. And I have four brief points about new TLDs. Number one, many of you know me, and that I've been waiting ten years to operate a TLD. So you know I will be an applicant. And I'm also a backend provider for more applications. Number two, we think the RFP is a strong and well-prepared document. It reflects more than 18 months of community input and discussion. It's 98% of the way there. Number three, our applications will respect and protect I.P. rights. Number four, our biggest concern is that the application window slips past Q2, 2009. Subsequent to the Paris meeting, global business and community awareness and interest is very high. There are many backend providers like eNOM spreading the word. So we, the Internet community, have done a great job to get applicants back to the starting line. Our engines are running. Don't let us run out of gas before you start the race. Open the application window in Q2, 2009. Thank you. [ Applause ]
>> PETER DENGATE THRUSH: Sir.
>> DIRK KRISCHENOWSKI: My name is Dirk Krischenowski, and I'm founder of the dot Berlin initiative. We are here for the 11th meeting on -- in a row, ICANN meeting. And I'm hopeful every time, since the timeline ICANN publishes before the ICANN meeting looks very promising to us and others. But with us, also the community of Berliners is looking forward to acquire its top-level domain, dot Berlin. But every time we are going back to our community in Germany, we are disappointed, disappointed about the three- to six-months delay in the new TLD process, which makes up nine months from now before the next round actually opens. I call this a consecutive pregnancy of ICANN. And what is usually done when a pregnancy will not end naturally is cesarean section is the method of choice for both saving the life of, in our case, I would say, the new TLD applicants, and ICANN. I'm also speaking on behalf of the city TLD stakeholder alliance, the city TLD initiatives of Barcelona, Berlin, Hamburg, New York City, and Paris have formed on Tuesday. Our interest group is planning to become part of ICANN's structure and framework. And we invite others to join our group. And we are happy to do cooperation and collaboration with them. Besides the timeline, our group is also concerned about the 75,000 annual fees for city TLDs. This amount is unfair in comparison to the ccTLDs and existing gTLDs. It also endangers the business models of the city TLDs seriously. Therefore, and for these reasons, I would appreciate if the board will not allow ICANN to further postpone the introduction of the new top-level domain names. Please help to give birth to the new top-level domain names finally. [ Applause ]
>> PETER DENGATE THRUSH: Thank you. Congratulations on the formation of your city TLD association. That seems a classic example of bottom-up self-organizing. Can we go over to this side. Number three, please, microphone three. The name then we'll come to 4.
>> Okay. Sorry, my name is (saying name), from Nigeria, the TLD managers. This is actually my first ICANN meeting. I came here with quite a lot of expectation. But I have seen something quite different. I have seen quite a lot of rows and grouses and infighting, if I would say, the Gs on one side, the CCs, the GAC. And there is so much suspicion and distrust. And the bottom line, really, is that everybody's talking and nobody's listening. The fallout I see already, with witness in AfriNIC being moved from, I think, Ethiopia to Mauritius because of suspicion of involvement in dot Africa. I also see it in the new gTLD, which I do not believe serves the interest of the user, is it competition that's our goal? Is it transparency that is our goal? Or should be a subset, what really are we driving at in this new process? My submission is that each is saying something, and we need to pause to hear each person. The ccTLD space, with its sovereignty issues, is talking about governments having the right to decide how to populate their domains and have a basic right to ensure that their citizens have access to what they will call a (inaudible). It is not the same space as the gTLDs. They are also saying they need an avenue to propagate their ideas. I am thinking with this new process, we will be able to true up the dot tels and the dot mobis that I feel are very innovative, with the new process, would these great innovations have happened or would they have been stifled? So we need to sit back and listen to each other and need to realize that we need to walk together to achieve a desired aim, which is to make the Internet better for the end user, not for the registries or the registrars. There are tools in the process. But we need to make it better. And I feel that the new process, its pricing, its system, will stifle innovation by all parameters and will not be in the best interest of the Internet community. Thank you.
>> PETER DENGATE THRUSH: Thank you very much. Can we come down to number 4 on this side.
>> Thank you very much for convening this conference here in Cairo and giving us the opportunity of participating. [ Applause ]
>> The ICT in Egypt and in the Arab world is following with tremendous attention everything that is being done. I will give the rest of my remarks in English. My name is (saying name). I'm CEO of (No audio)-- I understood very little of what they discussed. (No audio) But I was astonished to see that something very important was not discussed there, how offering ccTLDs and gTLD (inaudible) worldwide. From everything I've heard, ccTLDs will be offering IDN domains much sooner than the current gTLDs, were I in business today. Does it make sense to ensure that at least the current gTLDs are allowed to operate on the same timetable as ccTLDs? (inaudible) Arabic language version of my domain. I know how it is to deal with different governments. And I certainly do not want to go to 20 different governments to acquire 20 different versions of my name. I can't even fit 20 different ccTLD domains on my business card. Until now, I have gotten the very answer that maybe gTLDs will be there in time. Maybe not, though. Now, my question, dear board. And I would like to point out that this is a question, not only a remark. My question: How can I make sure that this threatening problem for the business world is not only maybe, but definitely solved? Or, in other words, as one of the businesses very much affected by your decision, can you guarantee me that both the current gTLDs and the ccTLDs will be offering IDNs on the same timeline?
>> PETER DENGATE THRUSH: Thank you. Down back to the center line.
>> Dear board --
>> PETER DENGATE THRUSH: I'm sorry. I thought it was -- we don't have time to engage in a debate at this stage. We're not giving answers to all of the questions. What we could do is take each question and provide a long, full, detailed answer. There is a lot to the questions that you posed. We think it is more important to hear you at this stage than to debate with you.
>> Thank you.
>> PETER DENGATE THRUSH: I thought I had made it clear. We're recording that you will and there will be answered published. Back to the center line. Nii, nice to see you.
>> NII QUAYNOR: Yeah, I'm very pleased to be back. I'm convenor of AfriNOG. I'm here to make a comment on what appears to be a side effect. Recently, there's been news reports, both in Africa and in Europe, about a registry meeting, AfriNIC meeting, policy meeting in Ethiopia being banned because Ethiopia had an interest in hosting a names registry, dot Africa. This is surprising to me, because, you know, a (inaudible) registry is a registry. And there's, therefore, no real relationship to a names registry. So I'm actually here to sort of apologize and ask that you bear with us while we try to build a real consensus. Of course, we dislike politics or, you know, national situations affecting our technical policy development. We also don't believe that commercial interests should do the same. So I'm actually -- since it's evident that the action was engendered from the community, I'm asking that we be, you know, given some chance to try and regroup in the normal way, as we are doing right now in a bottom-up way, such that we are able to acquire the relevant know-how in terms of technical registry operation and be able to help our name services in general in the region advance. So it's more one of that kind of statement that I intend to make. So thank you very much.
>> PETER DENGATE THRUSH: Thank you, Nii. Now, just before we carry -- just to let you know, the housekeeping arrangements, this session now needs to finish. We can extend it until 1:15. We will not finish the line. We are looking now for some additional time in the timetable. And as soon as we have that sorted, we will let you know. So.
>> YOUNG EUM LEE: Young Eum Lee from dot KR. I'm in the ccNSO. I'd like to talk about the issue of geographical diversity, not with new gTLDs or IDNs. I'd like to point out that ICANN's core value number 4 focuses on geographic and cultural values at all levels. This value has been repeatedly emphasized in the D.O.C.'s midterm review of the JPA as well. I would first like to acknowledge the efforts of ICANN to adhere to this value by adopting the geographical diversity principle to its board and various committees, as well as the decision to hold the meetings in a rotating fashion in the five geographical regions. At the same time, however, I would like to point out some areas which I believe requires continued effort. Specifically, in the distribution of ICANN staff. According to the figures on the ICANN site, out of the 73 staff members and those of you in the audience, try to remember your region's figures, if you're from Latin America, you should know that there are no members, staff members, from Latin America.
>> Sorry, I am.
>> YOUNG EUM LEE: According to the site, there wasn't. I'm going -- okay. One. Okay. Four from Africa. 13 from Europe. And 45, or 62% of staff members which are -- are from the North American region, of which 41 are from the United States. In the case of the AP region, six staff members are from Australia, one from the Middle East, and four are from the rest of Asia, 32 countries. And although I think that the ccNSO chair, Chris Disspain, the president of ICANN, Paul Twomey, and a significant member of the board, Bruce Tonkin -- all from Australia -- and ICANN board chair, Peter Dengate Thrush -- from New Zealand -- are doing a fabulous job, and I have only the highest admiration for them -- [ Applause ]
>> YOUNG EUM LEE: -- and personally have the warmest feelings, especially for Peter and Chris, I would hesitate to fully agree that the truly Asian perspective, which constitutes 40% of all Internet users in the world -- and I think this room is a reflection of some of that -- is represented by their presence on those important positions. I would like to point out that in terms of geographically diversity, ICANN still has some way to go in terms of reflecting the truly Asian perspective, and would like to publicly make an appeal to ICANN to consider this in the future, for example, in selecting the venue for its meetings and in hiring new staff members. And I would like to conclude that I have a secure day job. I am not in the job market. Thank you. [ Applause ]
>> PETER DENGATE THRUSH: Thank you for drawing those statistics to our attention, Dr. Lee. Let's keep going down the line. Thank you.
>> SUSAN REYNOLDS: Susan Reynolds speaking on behalf of dot gal, an initiative in favor of a domain for the Galician language and culture. Right now, we have the draft applicant guidebook, and we thank you for this. We appreciate it, because we know it's been hard work for you. But, still, the whole new gTLDs has taken a long, long time. In the international meeting in Paris, the expected timeline indicated that the process would be open around May 2009. Now we have to wait a few more months, maybe September 2009. We don't know; you don't know. Our community is awaiting the launch of the gTLD dot gal, dot CYM, et cetera. And in order to have a more democratic, multicultural, and global Internet, we need the process to be open as soon as possible. Because the sooner, the better. Communities -- community-based TLDs have well-defined characters. So we think the process will be easier for these type of communities. We are ready. We think other community-based TLDs should be ready. So we really ask you to open the process as soon as possible. And we're also concerned about the $185,000 fee. We think about the different possibilities of paying this fee, and we think we could do it. But what about small initiatives, small communities? What about them? Isn't it far too high? What is far too high is the $75,000 annual fee. We really ask ICANN to think about this. Thank you. [ Applause ]
>> PETER DENGATE THRUSH: Thank you for that. Go down to microphone number 4.
>> KIEREN McCARTHY: Yes, hello. It's -- I have a comment here from the online chat room which I wanted to read out from Danny Younger. He says, had Jon Postel been approached with the possibility of a name space devoted to the language and cultures of indigenous peoples, he would probably have said, "Good idea. You can have dot IP," and the name space would have come into being with no cost, no hassle, and no paperwork, just simplicity and trust. The pursuit of the noble should not require $185,000 entry fee. Why stifle innovation and worthy products by imposing this rather significant barrier to entry?
>> PETER DENGATE THRUSH: I other aspects of life 15 years ago people yearn to go back to. In the middle.
>> OLIVIER CREPIN-LEBLOND: Thank you. My name is Olivier Crepin-Leblond. I'm speaking as an individual, a bit like Mr. Joe average, Joe plumber of the Internet. [ Laughter ]
>> OLIVIER CREPIN-LEBLOND: I have a statement which I've written earlier. And I was comforted in delivering it after I heard Secretary-General Tourð's performance a bit earlier on. First of all, I would like to congratulate ICANN about the amount of work which has been done so far and the pace at which ICANN is changing, evolving and maturing. I would like to talk specifically about IPv4 and IPv6, call it migration, transition, cohabitation. I don't want to get into arrangements here. It's about the fact that IPv4 address space has been depleted. It is the fact that IPv6 opens the door to a huge amount of address space and can therefore be seen as the main solution about IPv4 space depletion. In the past few days, I have spoken to several people in the ICANN board and the ICANN community. There is clear consensus -- there's no clear consensus, sorry, about what should be done. Previously, I consulted several RIRs, and through their mailing list, and I know the RIRs are working hard on this subject. What transpires, though, is that there is a real need to coordinate all those efforts to promote IPv6. This is such a hot issue in the rest of the world, yet while several sessions touched on this, on this subject in Paris, there was no -- well, there was a total lack of any session about v4 and v6 here in Cairo. ICANN has done a huge amount of work with regard to names. I would therefore like more focus on the second end of ICANN, the numbers, which at the moment look like the poor child in the ICANN family. Until now, ICANN has been reactive on this subject. It needs to become proactive because if nothing is done and it fails its core function, its core mission to ensure the stability of the Internet, the very fact that so little was done in time will be taken against ICANN. I therefore suggest more IPv6-related sessions in the future conference in Mexico, and I also suggest a special cross-constituency fast-track working group to identify, evaluate, and implement everything that ICANN could do or should do to promote IPv6 and to coordinate these efforts with the RIRs and NROs. Come on, ICANN, you can do it. Thank you for listening. [ Applause ]
>> PETER DENGATE THRUSH: We sure can. Ron.
>> RON ANDRUFF: Good morning. Thank you, Mr. Chairman. Ron Andruff, member of the business constituency, but speaking in my individual capacity. I would like to echo the comments of many here that the staff has created a very workable document. But there are some edges that still need to be knocked off, and I would like to put a sharper point on a couple of those elements. The first is with regard to the registry operation fee, that 75,000 that's talked about. I just would like to make sure that the staff and the board understand that if, in fact, there is such a large number, that would have to be recouped in the wholesale cost to the registrars who would then mark the place up considerably higher than it normally would be, meaning that ultimately the end registrant or consumer would pay a higher price. And of course none of us want that. The second point I would like to speak about is Module 4, and that's the section 4.2.3, the comparison evaluation chart. The operator must score 11 of 12 points or 92% to be declared a clear winner. And this doesn't account for human fallibility. And I speak as someone who has founded a company, a registry, in dot travel, and we had gathered the travel and tourism community, 22 sectors, as they determined and we were told that we did not represent community. So human fallibility has to be factored in, and therefore we would like to recommend that at least 10 of 12 points, or 83% as an example, be somewhat of a measure. The third point is transliteration. The notion that every label should have $185,000 fee attached to it is incongruous with ICANN's cost recovery concept. Should an applicant pass all the criteria and be awarded the right to manage a string on behalf of a particular community or simply a generic TLD, the additional cost of $185,000 simply to review the transliteration of that name is unconscionable. How much could it cost to review the transliteration into Cyrillic, Arabic, or Kanji characters? $5,000 per review is probably still too much, but the fact is it would take that kind of number as opposed to 185. Secondly, one could argue that allowing a second entity to lay claim to a transliterated name of another applicant contravenes the confusingly similar element of the RFP. And that is to say, it forces an applicant to spend further financial resources on the challenge process for no valid reason to defend its global IDN-based string that is the transliteration of its ASCII string. That money would be better spent in development of the TLD. Third, ICANN's responsibility, stability and integrity of the net and allowing two registry operators to run what effectively is the same string is willingly creating huge potential for resolution collisions and user issues that are completely unnecessary. Finally, allowing applicants to gain authority over their respective ASCII and IDN names -- that is, all transliterated names requested and approved -- would allow a registrant -- a registry to offer registrants a combination of both ASCII and IDN names they wish to registry without concern for any collision in the DNS. The last issue I would like to raise is that of the four-month awareness campaign. We have heard from many in this line and I'm sure we will see many comments online in the respective places, but as pointed out by Kurt Pritz this week, the awareness campaign is already happening. What is the rationale for suspending the process once the RFP is ready to go. Clearly, no entity that sincerely wishes to manage a registry can prepare an application in four months. Speaking from experience, at minimum, one year of preparatory work is necessary, and perhaps two, and therefore the notion that a new potential applicant can hear about a new gTLD and then 16 weeks later deliver a well thought through application has zero merit. I encourage the board to instruct the staff to move forward with the four-month campaign in January 2009to ensure that applications can be submitted in Q2 2009 as originally suggested. Finally, with regard to improving the contract terms so that agreements are fair and equitable to all parties, I leave that to the lawyers and the ICANN community to comment on, but clearly that also needs to be redressed. Thank you very much.
>> PETER DENGATE THRUSH: Thank you for the clarity and brevity of those submissions, Ron. Mr. Palage.
>> MICHAEL PALAGE: Thank you. Two points briefly. The first is with regard to the document that was leased earlier this week regarding the board review. I have done a quick cursory review of the document, and the one issue that I believe has not been addressed that should is the issue of term limits for the CEO. I believe that term limits are an important safety mechanism to prevent ICANN, the organization, from becoming too closely aligned with the personality of its CEO. Term limits are an important mechanism. There are term limits for most ICANN -- for the ICANN board. The GNSO, in its recent review, imposed term limits on council members. If you look at the IGOs, there are generally two term limits for the Secretary-Generals. So I think term limits for the CEO is something that should potentially be added to the board review document. Second point, and it has to do with some of the comments from the ITU Secretary-General Tourð. During his discussion earlier today, he made a point several times of talking about how the ITU did not get involved in operational issues. And I think one of the important things ICANN needs do, whether it's viewed as a technical coordinating body or a regulator, it needs to stay out of operational issues. And I think that that's a line that continues to blur. ICANN, notwithstanding provisions in its bylaws, does operate the dot INT and dot ARPA registry, it operates a root server, and with its most recent proposal to sign the root, we see ICANN becoming more and more involved in operational issues. I think there needs to be a clear bifurcation between operational issues and oversight issues. Thank you.
>> PETER DENGATE THRUSH: Thank you, Mike.
>> MICHAEL PALAGE: One final point. Just let the people speak, everybody in the line. It would help.
>> PETER DENGATE THRUSH: Thank you. [ Applause ]
>> PETER DENGATE THRUSH: Next.
>> ARLENE PAREDES: Thank you. My name is Arlene Paredes. I am from NETPIA. We are an ICANN registrar in South Korea, but we do have an office in Manila, Philippines, so I will probably see some of you in Manila next year. I have three points and it is based on the beautiful words on the gTLD program side which are openness, change and innovation. After reading the RFP, sad to say the openness is not there, at least not yet. We are hoping it would be more open in terms of details, as the draft comes to progress and is finalized. From the point of view of an investor, we don't know yet what we're getting into, how much refunds would be there in case refunds would happen, as, of course, an application progresses. And in terms of the registry fee, which is at $75,000, we don't know if that's for everyone, if it's been decided, and if every kind or every diverse kind of applicant has been considered. And having said that, I will go into innovation and change. I would just like to remind ICANN that not all great innovators have deep pockets and even the most amazing change can be deterred by unreasonable cost. That's all and thank you.
>> PETER DENGATE THRUSH: Thank you. Just a warning. This may be the last one before we take a break. But we are coming back and you will all be heard.
>> MICKEY BEYER-CLAUSEN: My name is Mickey Beyer-Clausen and I am the founder of Pervasive Media. First of all, I would like to applaud ICANN for recognizing and promoting the potential of domain names to lay the groundwork for better Internet. And for the great foundation found in the very well-written draft RFP. However, representing a new entity intending to apply for new gTLDs, it is critical for funding and planning purposes to have short deadlines and no delays. We need to be able to trust announcements from ICANN. It is my hope that ICANN will seriously consider pushing the new gTLD process through as fast as possible with no further delays. If not, ICANN would be favoring established entities with other revenue streams that have time to wait. New entities are fragile to changes and delays, especially in this financial climate. My second request is that ICANN reconsider the annual maintenance fee. ICANN already receives 185,000 application fee covering the cost for this new gTLD process. $75,000, or 5%, whichever is highest, is an exceptionally high fee to pay to ICANN for compliance, registry liaison, and possibly increased registrar activity. Thank you.
>> PETER DENGATE THRUSH: Thank you. Okay. We are going to stop now for lunch. Sorry we got just to there but we have to stop somewhere. Here is the proposed timetable for this afternoon. We will take a break now for lunch until 2:15. We will then have a very shortened President's Strategy Committee report and workshop from 2:15 to 2:45. If you are not interested in the President's Strategy Committee, you can take a longer lunch. We will then come back to this public forum from 2:45 to 3:30. 2:45 to 3:30, and the board has obligations involving its international visitors from 3:30 onwards.
>> Peter can I just at for those are fretting in the line, we will take your names, in order so that you haven't invested all that time in waiting. So don't worry about that.
>> PETER DENGATE THRUSH: So your place in the queue is preserved. Thank you, Paul. So that's it. We'll stop for lunch. Just those times again. Lunch until 2:15. President's Strategy Committee until 2:45. And then the forum until 3:30. Thank you all. [ Lunch break ]
>> PETER DENGATE THRUSH: I have a speaking list based on the order that was taken at the time. So you don't need to come up and stand again. I will just call you. If you can get to a microphone nearby.
First on the list is Mickey Beyer-Clausen. Is Mickey Beyer-Clausen here? Can you make yourself known to a microphone bearer? After that will be Y.J. Park, unless Y.J. your point has already been made?
>> I already spoke.
>> PETER DENGATE THRUSH: Thank you. I will take you off. Y.J., do you still want to speak? You made your point a moment ago. Vittorio.
>> I would like to make a comment.
>> PETER DENGATE THRUSH: Vittorio? After Vittorio, it is William Tan?
>> If you are in the room, would you please stand up so we can identify you with a microphone, as Peter calls your name.
>> PETER DENGATE THRUSH: William Tan. Thank you. Welcome back. Grab a microphone and go.
>> WILLIAM TAN: Hi. My name is William Tan. I am speaking in my individual capacity as a long-time evangelist of IDNs. I feel very encouraged by ICANN in its efforts to actually infuse IDN into the root server in its efforts as seen in the ccTLD fast-track program as well as the new gTLD round. However, I would like to point out two points -- two deficiencies in the IDN implementation plan in both programs. Specifically, let me speak actually in the capacity of a Chinese-speaking Asian cat lover living in Malaysia. I would like to use that as an example that I would like to see dot cat in Chinese being applied for as a TLD. And I'm not speaking about any string contention with the dot Catalonia, dot cat having any problems at all. I'm just saying "cat" in Chinese is a single-character Chinese word as a Han character. There is a fairly strict requirement as I've seen in the new gTLD guidebook that says that there is -- that any string being applied for needs to be at least three characters in any language or script. I think -- I do understand the rationale for having that policy, that it being quite a blanket policy I feel.
I would like to urge the relevant committees working on IDN working groups to actually reconsider that and make an exception at least for the Chinese-speaking community.
Next, I'd like to also make a point about -- well, I know I can speak for the Chinese-speaking community that there is a lot of talk about applying the ICANN guidelines for the implementation of IDNs in both the fast-track program as well as the new gTLD guidebook. However, that guideline is really -- primarily it was created for IDNs at the second level. Now it is very clear in either of the programs how that is going to be applied on the root level. I mean, if you look at it -- if you want to apply the IDN ICANN guidelines at the root level, you really should be taking into account bundling policies and variants and so on.
We have seen string contentions being addressed in the new gTLD guidebook. It's not quite the same as the ICANN IDN guidelines because the ICANN IDN guidelines actually talks about obeying the relevant variant tables. In particular, I am talking about the Chinese variants which is kind of well-known that it's kind of unusable for a Chinese string to be applied for in one single -- only for certain variant but not the other variant. So the -- I would like to actually just say that -- okay. That actually applies to both --
>> PETER DENGATE THRUSH: I don't want to cut you down, but you really need to come to the point. Can you make a couple points? We have a long list and only 30 minutes to get through.
>> WILLIAM TAN: There were two points, basically. The first point being the three-character restriction.
>> PETER DENGATE THRUSH: Got that, yes. Second point?
>> WILLIAM TAN: Second point being the gTLD application needs to address the fact that Chinese applications probably requires more than just one string and there is no mechanism in which how you can apply for two strings at one time that are variants of each other.
>> PETER DENGATE THRUSH: Okay, thank you. Have we found Vittorio yet? Has Vittorio Bertola come back? If not, let's move on to Werner Staub. Werner, I see you're there. After Werner will be Steve DelBianco unless you feel you have done yours and after Steve will be Jordyn Buchanan. Right now, it's Werner Staub.
>> WERNER STAUB: I make this comment in personal capacity. You have heard me a number of times urge that we go fast or faster with respect to the rounds or the rounds we have in front of us with the new gTLDs. But now I am going to say something to be perceived to be the opposite.
I am actually concerned that we are causing a stampede. A stampede is a situation when those run, at least many of them, who do not actually like to run. They don't want to but they just have to.
And this is caused, I believe, because without realizing what we were doing, we have opened the TLD space criterion to participants who've never been there. As a matter of fact, there has never been any TLD that was just intended to be for single registrant's use.
Up to now, every TLD has been for people to register principally other than the operator of the registry.
And now I see a growing number of projects that people talk about, and there is actually a real fever that's developing -- you are probably going to see more about that in Mexico -- of people who say, "Look, we have to apply for a common name." One of them I heard employees of Deloitte saying that they want Deloitte -- dot Deloitte as a TLD. Not only do they want that but they want to encourage their customers to apply for their respective brand names.
This is a totally new situation because whoever has access to the nobility, to the image of being on a TLD, of course, can differentiate itself from the others who do not have access. However, there is not space for everybody. There is not even space for everybody who has a brand.
The only thing we can do, if you look at that, is remember how the thing was created and remember what Jon Postel said. He wrote it. It is in his Internet standard. He said, "Right and ownership are not the appropriate considerations. Responsibility to the community is the appropriate consideration." I don't think we should forget that.
>> PETER DENGATE THRUSH: Okay, thank you. I have been informed that Vittorio has left.
They will be making submissions in writing. Has Jordyn Buchanan come back? After Jordyn will be Cheryl Preston.
>> JORDYN BUCHANAN: I'm Jordyn Buchanan, and I represent absolutely no one except for myself. Those of you that have seen me here at the mic before are probably familiar with the fact that I have -- I have long thought that new TLDs are a great idea. I'm very excited to see the progress on new TLDs and I hope the process will move forward very quickly. Hope the process will move forward more in line with the schedule we saw in Paris than the schedule we've been talking about here, as others have echoed.
Listening to the comments today, though, I think that while it is very important for ICANN to provide competition in the gTLD space, I think that can only be accomplished with a robust and flexible introduction of new gTLDs and new business models. It is not ICANN's role to simply create a money-making spigot for everyone that wants to show up and start a new registry.
The bottom line here is that I think ICANN's job is to ensure that the framework allows for registry profits, but it certainly is not ICANN's job to ensure that there are registry profits.
So I think a lot of discussion about costs should be taken in the context of making sure that there will be some successful operators, but it is not necessary that we make everyone be successful in that context.
At the same time, I think it is really important that we recognize there are different types of models, some of which aren't geared towards making money at all. Those are also incredibly valuable. So as many people around the room has told us today, the current fee structure is probably not conducive to working with very small communities that may still be perfectly valid in the gTLD space, things like dot gal, strike me as good examples of that since we already have the successful launch of dot cat. This extensive preamble brings me to my main point, which is a one-year pause, probably longer than one year that is imagined in the current application materials after the round, I think, is problematic. In fact, the very fact that we continue to work through the gTLD process in a series of fairly and frequent rounds forces people to want to get everything done perfectly and right now. And, in fact, this is probably contributing to the stampede that Werner just referred to because everyone feels like they need to get their application in now and get it done.
It also forces everyone to want to make sure that the whole framework is perfect for all TLDs on this round. Without this notion of fairly and frequent rounds, and this notion of a pause, it would be perfectly reasonable, I think, to use the existing gTLD guidebook almost completely intact with this existing price point to start the process, yet a reasonable number of TLDs out. And in the meantime, figure out how to work through more flexible models and more flexible pricing schemes for other TLD applicants that could hopefully apply very shortly thereafter.
So I don't want to entangle my employer at all, but I happen to work for a company that has the philosophy of launching early and iterating. And I think it has worked very well in the Internet space. I hope that ICANN will contemplate using a model like that in order to make this a truly successful process as opposed to trying to get everything right the first time because I don't think we can do that.
>> PETER DENGATE THRUSH: Sounds like a gTLD fast track to match the ccTLD fast track.
Cheryl? And following you, Annette.
>> CHERYL PRESTON: Hello, I'm Cheryl Preston, I represent CP80.org and Brigham Young University. I want to thank the board and the staff for the tremendous amount of time and effort and resources that they put to restructuring the generic names supporting organization, particularly the new users house and particularly within that the stakeholder group for noncommercial users.
It creates an opportunity for user interests to be heard, including those of families, children, consumers, victims of cybercrime. But the restructure will only matter if new constituencies, new groups, new academics, researchers and individuals come forward and help shoulder the work.
So the question of additional participation is essential to the ultimate success of the restructuring.
In fact, I think it is a question of institutional confidence at this point, the lack of representation for some of those groups in the GNSO.
So I would like to encourage the ICANN board to support and fund an outreach effort to reach these groups. And I plea for all of you who are here to encourage individuals and groups from your countries, especially developing countries who have expertise in Internet users and consumer matters to join or form a new constituency in the noncommercial stakeholders group.
>> PETER DENGATE THRUSH: Thanks, Cheryl. At the microphone is going to be Annette. Could I just warn Dan Frechtling and Andrew Mack that you're next.
>> ANNETTE MUEHLBERG: My name is Annette Muehlberg. I am a member of the At-Large Advisory Committee speaking in my own capacity. Three issues I would like to address. One is the introduction of new gTLDs and the time it is taking. There are rounds and rounds of new starts, and I'm really wondering how long it will really take until we get the new gTLDs ready.
People are there. There are some initiatives around. We already know -- have been knowing for years now, and I'm really wondering if there is a possibility to go, for example, like for city TLDs, to make it possible that they start faster.
I'm living in Berlin, so I'm speaking here really in my own personal -- on my experience as someone who lives in Berlin and the success of dot de is also a disadvantage for the users sometimes because you have to squeeze in your new domains in this still-existing room which is left. And it would be really nice if we had some new domains free.
Second is the running of the TLDs. It costs a lot of money. 75,000 every year is a lot of money and this is only after the application fee of 185. I think there should be a difference made between noncommercial and commercial TLDs. In the end, all this will be on the back of end users that have to pay those domains.
Third is the dispute resolution. I'm wondering if we are talking about (audio cutting out) -- this is terrible -- questions of morality and other issues, if the Chamber of Commerce is really the right place to do so. I was told that the chamber of commerce, yes, it is not really linked to it, it is a separate place, but I'm wondering if an allocation of dispute resolution wouldn't be better even, for example, at the European court of human rights. So that's just one question here. Thank you.
>> PETER DENGATE THRUSH: Thanks, Annette. Dan Frechtling. Is Dan there? If Dan is not available, can we move to Andrew Mack.
Andrew behind you.
>> ANDREW MACK: Hi, I am Andrew Mack and I am here speaking in my own personal capacity, like everyone else apparently. I have two points. I'll make them as quickly as I can and as clearly as I can.
The first is, I wanted to go back and echo the comments of the gentleman from Egypt who was speaking in Arabic earlier today. I think what he's saying about introducing the gTLDs, at least the common ones in the IDN space and the cc's at the same time -- excuse me, sorry, more slowly.
I believe that his comment about introducing the gTLDs, the common ones, and the cc's in the IDN space at the same time is very, very important and very, very valid.
I think we just need to have a little bit of pity for the poor small business people who would have to -- who would have to go and do all this registering and that would be very difficult.
The second thing is, I really would like to applaud all the efforts that ICANN is making to do outreach. I was at the event in Washington. I think it was a great event. A lot of stuff going on. And I think that ICANN should be pleased at the amount of interest and passion and participation that we're seeing.
It strikes me that there's a lot more demand for the public comment period than there is supply, and that it's almost always the first thing to get cut.
I know that you're trying to build institutional confidence, and I'm not trying to be negative here. I'm trying to provide you with some really positive feedback.
You're getting a response to this desire for participation by prioritizing the public comments section of the ICANN meetings, I think you'd be sending the right kind of signal to the audience. If I just look around, there are many fewer people that were here before lunch. I'd like everybody in the community to be able to hear all the comments that the rest of the community is saying. Thanks.
>> PETER DENGATE THRUSH: I'm not quite sure what you mean by "prioritizing."
>> ANDREW MACK: I'll be -- then let me be very specific.
When the --
>> PETER DENGATE THRUSH: Well, just answer the question.
>> ANDREW MACK: Sure. Prioritizing means not moving it around in the schedule. Prioritizing means not having the speech go long and have the public comment pieces be cut, not having it be a difficult thing for people to do their -- to make their public comments. That's all.
So, you know, if -- if we have a time that's set in the schedule, let's stick to that time. If it's not enough time, let's make a larger amount of time. The impression that I get is that in earlier ICANNs, there was more time allocated for public comment than what was originally going to be the 45 minutes and I appreciate that you kept it open. I really do. But, you know, it shouldn't be a concession on your part and it shouldn't be something that we -- that people like -- who is it -- Mike had to ask for earlier in the session. That's all.
>> PETER DENGATE THRUSH: Okay.
>> PETER DENGATE THRUSH: Kang Soo Song. Is Kang Soo Song still here?
>> DR. SIR, JAE-CHUL: This is Dr. Sir, Jae-Chul from Seoul Korea.
>> PETER DENGATE THRUSH: It's not your turn. You're on my list but you're further down the list --
>> DR. SIR, JAE-CHUL: Yeah, I'm here on behalf of Dr. Song. He is here instead of me.
>> PETER DENGATE THRUSH: I'm sorry. Can you say that again?
>> DR. SIR, JAE-CHUL: Yeah. Kang Soo Song is my man so I can present for him.
>> PETER DENGATE THRUSH: Ah, yes. Go ahead.
>> DR. SIR, JAE-CHUL: Yes. Thank you. I am Dr. Sir, Jae-Chul from the NIDA, the registry of the dot kr, Korea.
First, I'd like to congratulations. ICANN's 10th anniversary and commend the work of the ICANN board and ICANN staff. Also, I'd like to ask ICANN to continue to support the core value of transparency and regional diversity, especially with regard to the selection of the venue for each meeting. As one of the applicants for the ICANN meeting in Asia-Pacific next year, I'd like to ask ICANN to uphold the principle of often and transparent procedure when selecting ICANN hosts.
Many people in this room may remember that the professor (saying name), one of the pioneers of the Internet, has been responsible for the promotion of original diversity and initial ICANN meeting have been held in Singapore is first meeting and Yokahama and Shanghai also.
This summer Korea impressed the participants of the OECD ministerial meeting in Seoul, and so we would like the chance to someday provide a similar experience to everyone at ICANN. Thank you.
>> PETER DENGATE THRUSH: Thank you, Dr. Sir, Jae-Chul. Iratxe Esnaola Arribilloga. Ah, there you are. Thanks.
>> IRATXE ESNAOLA ARRIBILLOGA: Hello. I'm Iratxe Esnaola Arribilloga. And I represent dot eus, a TLD for the Basque language culture community, and I would like to make two brief comments. First, that for a small community like the one I represent, the total fee, the pre and post total fee is too expensive including ICANN meetings all over the world, and second, that each delay and the long period between rounds makes that fee more and more expensive. We as small communities are ready to answer all the questions of a potential final application guidebook, and thus we would like -- we will thank you if you open the first round as soon as possible. Thank you for listening.
>> PETER DENGATE THRUSH: Thank you.
Jonathan Zuck, it's your turn again.
>> JONATHAN ZUCK: Hello. Hi. I'm Jonathan Zuck from the association for competitive -- competitive technology. And I guess I'm -- I may be, in all these discussions about institutional confidence, becoming the metrics guy and I wanted to say in the workshop on Monday I was very excited that Peter's slides featured metrics fairly highly, so thank you.
I think that it's a very important issue in terms of building institutional confidence to have real measures of success and failure.
I noted with interest, in the consultant's review of the board a couple of interesting points. One was that the board ought to be compensated and with that I wholeheartedly agree. You obviously put in an awful lot of work and I think it's important for the board to get compensation for the work that they do here.
The second point that I noticed in that report was that there needed to be more objective measurements of the success of the staff and the president of ICANN, and I think that that needs to be pursued vigorously as well. It was unanimous among the board that they didn't have a handle on what the performance of the president and the staff was, and I think that that's not a sign of an organization that's being managed well by the board and there needs to be some objective metrics there.
In addition to that, metrics surrounding the success and failure of ICANN in terms of things like contract compliance, et cetera, I think can provide real objective measures for how ICANN is doing and provide real measures for success or failure at an effort at institutional confidence.
I think that there's a tendency to substitute programs for metrics, and I think that's very dangerous. I think the reality is that the insertion of metrics into the plan is no substitute for setting goals and accomplishing them, and while Paul mentioned there being no confidence nirvana on Monday, I think actually having some sort of objective standard for what you're trying to reach and implications for not reaching it is essential. I began my career as a software developer and there's a really famous expression in software development and that is that measuring the progress of writing a program by the number of lines of code you've written is similar to measuring the progress of building a plane by how much it weighs. And we need to make sure that that isn't the process that we're falling into, and instead are really building some objective measures, both for the performance of ICANN, its staff, its president, et cetera, and also some measures for confidence of the community and that that should be the horse in front of the cart. Thank you.
>> PETER DENGATE THRUSH: Thank you, Jonathan. Thank you for your support of the work that -- or recognition, rather, of the work that the board does. I can confirm that all of the board puts in a huge amount of work into all of these projects.
Lento Yip is next. And after Lento, Antonio Harris. If Lento Yip is here, if not -- there you go. And after Antonio, Yassin El Shazly. Right. Lento.
>> LENTO YIP: Hello. I'm from Hong Kong and I'm speaking on behalf of myself.
This is the first time I'm at ICANN meetings and I think I had wrong idea about ICANN. Although I have been in this domain name business for like some six years. I thought ICANN was sort of a -- well, a change organization and that why -- how come this organization decides on everything?
But after this participation in the meetings, I think I got the right idea. I'm glad to see a lot of people from different countries debating, fighting, and through a process come up with ideas and decisions and I think that was a good thing.
So I'm glad I'm here.
But I have two things that I want to say. At the ICANN meeting, I took like 24 hours to come here and that was pretty costly to me and I hope that ICANN meetings can be held everywhere, and I think it is being held everywhere and it rotates among continents and I hope maybe we can take into consideration of like the proximity to different populations, so that we can have more participants joining this very meaningful meeting. That's for one.
And another thing is that I echo one of the audience before, saying that geography shouldn't be a decision factor. I think geography shouldn't be a decision factor. Population should be.
So that I hope as a Chinese, I hope that there will be more of opportunity for different ethnic groups to be involved in like the board, the management, the councils or other things like that. Although I understand this is not the choice by the people because maybe there is some mechanism to select the board, the councils but I hope that there will be measures implemented to encourage a better mix of participants from all over the world. But overall, I think this is a very meaningful meeting. Thank you. And thank you from Hong Kong.
>> PETER DENGATE THRUSH: Thank you, Lento. I'm glad you're here, too, and let me just explain that we do rotate the meetings from continent to continent. In fact, from geographic region to geographic region. The last meeting last year was in North America and this year we've moved from Asia, we were in New Delhi and then we came to Paris, which is Europe and here we are in Africa. Our next meeting is in Latin America and then the cycle starts again so yes, we do rotate the meetings around from region to region. And just a small note. We don't talk about what we do here as fighting but we prefer a robust exchange of respectful views but thank you for your contribution. That's excellent.
>> PETER DENGATE THRUSH: Tony Harris. Welcome.
>> TONY HARRIS: Yes. This is -- my name is Tony Harris. I'm speaking for the -- as executive director of the Latin American Federation of the Internet and (saying name). I would just like to refer briefly to the draft RFP for new gTLDs, and perhaps repeat a couple of concepts which we spoke about in the GNSO forum and meeting. Basically I'd like to thank staff for this very interesting document and very well-presented, although quite long, and say -- simply say that I think the -- on the one hand, the registration -- the annual registry fee at $75,000 seems a trifle high, perhaps for some nonprofit applicants, and perhaps there could be consideration for having the first two years on rollout of a new TLD, instead of applying a minimum, you should -- you could allow them to pay a percentage, as is one of the two alternatives, and apply the minimum fee, if it has to be applied, as from the third year. It might seem a little fairer to a new entrant.
The second point would be I think Ron Andruff made a very strong point when he said that if you don't do this, obviously the registry-registrar commercial model would have to -- would probably end up transferring this cost to the end registrant, which may not be the most convenient solution.
And finally, I would urge all those involved in try and keep this process on track and resolving to opening the application window as soon as possible. There are many entities and companies that are in line waiting for quite some time now, and there doesn't seem to be much reason to delay this much further. Thank you very much.
>> PETER DENGATE THRUSH: Thanks, Tony. Just a quick response. Yes, these are drafts and we are looking for that kind of suggestion that you've made in relation to financing. I'm personally committed to a flexible financing approach, if they can be found. Clearly, the -- perhaps the most important requirement here, though, is certainty. People have to know in advance what they're getting themselves in for. But, yes, if we can do flexible financing to meet applicant needs and conditions, we will.
And last on my speaking list, Yassin.
>> YASSIN EL SHAZLY: Hello. Yassin El Shazly. I am ICANN fellow and this is my second ICANN meeting, so I'm the last one, I guess, who is going to speak, and my remarks I guess may not be as much as valuable as those that have been made.
A couple quick remarks regarding the ICC document and the new gTLDs draft.
Firstly, we all know that ICANN, it's California nonprofit organization, so it must comply with the U.S. law. And we have this also overseas security act that prevents ICANN to trade with states who are listed in the list of terrorists made by the U.S. government, so as a legal condition -- I know, I am aware that there is nothing special about ICANN. It's like any other entity's legal body in the U.S. that should comply with the U.S. law, so regarding independence, how we can get over this obligation. It's a legal obligation and I know that it's not -- I have been following this. We have briefings, so I have been told that it is not a legal condition, it does not exist in the JPA. Also, it has never existed in the memorandum of understanding but it's a legal obligation, so how we can get over it in order to enforce independence.
On the same note, should we think about the transfer of property of the root zones, since we talk about independence? So property, legally speaking, should we talk about transfer of property?
And my last remark concerning the new gTLDs, regarding the objection of public order and morality. Module 3. We have this freedom of speech exception regarding that we should -- that the granting of new gTLDs should respect Article 19 and 20 of the pact of the U.N. civil and political rights, but regarding the center, the settlement centers who have been proposed to settle this -- such kind of objection of conflicts regarding the public order and morality objections, all the centers are based in Europe. We have the WIPO, we have the International Chamber of Commerce in Paris, we have the international dispute settlement in London. And we all know that the freedom of expression, it's a very controversial human rights issue, and there is a lot of cultures specifically, and I think that one of the most important values of the community of ICANN -- this is my second meeting -- it's cultural diversity. We come from different horizons, from different regions, from commercial and noncommercial, so this is the very most important value. I would like that I would -- I would like to cast my voice that cultural diversity should be considered regarding -- regarding the settlements of public order and morality objections, especially freedom of speech. Thank you.
>> PETER DENGATE THRUSH: Thank you. And thank you for coming to ICANN through the fellowship program. We appreciate that, and it's not for me to comment on the value of anybody's things, but your views are certainly very welcome. Thank you for coming and thank you for giving them.
That's the last on my speaking list, so I've had a request from Jean-Jacques to make a couple of comments in reply, to we'll come to Jean-Jacques and then if there are no further comments from the floor, we'll close the session and move into the next one. Jean-Jacques.
>> JEAN-JACQUES SUBRENAT: Thank you. As several questions were put during this public forum session on several aspects of internationalization of ICANN, I thought I'd give a joint reply or some comments, both to your questions and those of the previous session, which were in the PSC presentation.
So I'd like to take up three points very quickly.
First, the model. Are we talking about an intergovernmental model which should be the model for ICANN or is it the one we are trying to develop? As someone who has been involved in international affairs, I would say that the attraction, perhaps the value for the future of the ICANN model, is precisely that its kingpin is not intergovernmental. It includes government advice, but it is not based mainly or solely on governments.
My second point is, what do you mean, what do we mean by "internationalization"? What came out very clearly from this discussion, I found, Peter, was two things.
We have been concentrating, perhaps very much, on the external aspect of internationalization, such as additional legal presence, conflict resolution by seeking advice from bodies. It has just been pointed out that all those which seem to be envisaged are in Europe. But at the same time, we have to do more in a sort of internal internationalization of ICANN.
Positions on staff, leadership, et cetera. I think the message has gone across very clearly.
My third point is about the IIC itself, the documents proposed by the President's Strategy Committee. Two points there.
The timing. I think that it came clearly through from your remarks that there is some concern that we may be lagging a bit behind our initial thinking, which was to have something really ready, quite a bit before, actually, the termination or the possible termination of the JPA in September 2009.
But to conclude on this point, I would revert to what Peter said in his presentation during the PSC session, and that is that we have all sorts of considerations such as public comment periods, we have to take on board all the comments made, and for that reason I think we are sticking, at least for the time being, to the timetable that Peter had presented to you on the screen. Thank you.
>> PETER DENGATE THRUSH: Thank you, Jean-Jacques. So I'm going to close the public forum and thank you all very much for your attendance and thank you also for putting up the rather disjointed nature for that. The reason for that is simply the number of you that came on this issue. The last public forums that we've had have not been as extensive and perhaps we shouldn't have predicted this one would be as large. And the other thing is we did have only today to take advantage of the international guests and the compromise was hearing them, and I think we got that right.
We are about to go now, just for those of you who are first-time attendees, we're about to have a coffee break and then the board is going to go into a workshop, which has sometimes gone on till 10:00, 11:00, midnight or later, and as the board tries to gap you will with all of the issues and all of the input that it's been fed in this coming week. It's our chance to try and distill that into some kind of sort of action plans, and I assure you there's lots of that robust exchange of respectful views that I mentioned earlier characterizing that discussion.
And of course the other thing we're doing is doing our homework for tomorrow's board meeting. There will be a formal board meeting with points of order and motions and eventually resolutions adopted. That's here. That starts at 8:30 and you're very welcome to attend. At that stage, it's the board only, so we will not be taking comments from the floor. But you're very welcome to attend.
After that, this afternoon, to finish the day, please come back at 2:00 for a GNSO Council wrap-up session. Look forward to seeing you tomorrow. Thank you.