[discuss] Time to be more precise about Internet Governance

Demi Getschko trieste at gmail.com
Thu Jan 2 21:41:33 UTC 2014

Yes. And just to be fair to Steve's last assertion,  In my view ICANN
reports fully on revenues and expenditures, so I do not see any
transparency problem in ICANN's results annual report.

On Thu, Jan 2, 2014 at 7:05 PM, Steve Crocker <steve at shinkuro.com> wrote:

> Nathalie, et al,
> In the spirit of being precise, what I've said several times is that the
> surplus, if any, generated by the gTLD applications and the proceeds, if
> any, from the auction process will be treated separately and not be folded
> into the general revenue stream.  The distinction between the above and
> what you said is the distinction between revenues and surplus.  The first
> use of the revenues from the gTLD program will be to cover the expenses of
> the gTLD program.  Although the revenues are quite a bit higher than
> originally expected, the expenses are too.  It is not yet clear whether
> there will actually be any surplus, nor is clear how soon such surpluses
> would become available.
> We have not made any decision about what to do with these funds.  We will
> run a fully open process when the time comes.
> Although I am strongly committed to making sure whatever surplus there is
> from the gTLD applications and from the auctions is curtained off and
> treated separately, I have a fairly conservative view of the likely amount.
> We are reporting fully on the revenues and expenditures and we're trying
> to be as explicit and as accessible as possible in providing the current
> numbers and the estimated results.
> Steve
> On Jan 2, 2014, at 3:40 PM, nathalie coupet <nathaliecoupet at yahoo.com>
> wrote:
> ICANN generates revenues through the gTLD program. Steve Croker promised
> to use these revenues to fund activities not related to ICANN's operations.
> Could we ask him what ICANN plans to do with this money?
> Nathalie
>  *From:* Demi Getschko <trieste at gmail.com>
> *To:* Brian E Carpenter <brian.e.carpenter at gmail.com>
> *Cc:* "discuss at 1net.org" <discuss at 1net.org>
> *Sent:* Thursday, January 2, 2014 3:09 PM
> *Subject:* Re: [discuss] Time to be more precise about Internet Governance
> I tend do agree with Brian on this theme. In some way, ICANN is devoting
> much of its energy and time to the so called "domain name industry" (btw, I
> do not see any good reasons for naming it "industry"). And, in my opinion,
> ICANN would be better viewed (and would have better served the community)
> if issues like IPv6 had deserved the same amount of effort and attention as
> the gTLD issue...
> best
> demi
> On Thu, Jan 2, 2014 at 5:42 PM, Brian E Carpenter <
> brian.e.carpenter at gmail.com> wrote:
> Milton,
> On 03/01/2014 06:59, Milton L Mueller wrote:
> > I've finally gotten a chance to read Brian Carpenter's
> > contribution to the debate. The article makes some good
> > points but unfortunately the author's credibility plummeted
> > to zero when he applied his notion of 'technical
> > coordination' to a specific instance - ICANN -
> Of course, ICANN is not the only venue for technical
> coordination, but it is the most relevant one for this discussion.
> > and announced
> > flatly that ICANN "has little or nothing to do with
> > governance. ICANN administers technical resources..."
> >
> > This claim is not only factually incorrect, it makes his
> > entire argument self-destruct.
> >
> > ICANN is an economic regulator of the domain name industry.
> > This is not a debatable proposition. One simply has to
> > observe what it does, read its legal and policy outputs, and
> > attend its meetings to understand this.
> I'm not sure I'd use the word 'regulator' but of course I don't
> dispute that ICANN has created the market in vanity gTLDs.
> > ICANN licenses registries and registrars and, via its
> > contractual licensing authority, it governs their conduct in
> > ways that affect privacy rights, trademark rights, control of
> > the supply of the resource, the number of competitors in the
> > market, the price of services, as well as minor forms of
> > technical coordination. This is not pure technical
> > coordination, it is the use of technical resources for
> > regulatory purposes.
> >
> > Yes, Brian, there is a conceptual distinction between
> > technical decisions and policy decisions (although engineers
> > can only tell you how to optimize given some desired
> > objectives, they cannot decide _what_ to optimize, as Brian
> > himself seems to recognize).  But I have explained in several
> > prior messages how common it is for governance institutions
> > to gain control of the administration of technical resources
> > in order to regulate conduct or enforce policy. Radio
> > spectrum management being the clearest and most obvious
> > example, but I could provide dozens of others.
> What is a little special about the gTLD market is that it is
> entirely artificial; it has no physical need to exist (unlike
> the radio spectrum market, which shares out a finite physical
> resource). Actually I have always been amazed that people ever
> fell for the belief that a gTLD name has value; it's very much
> akin to believing in fairies. The closest analogy I can think of
> is the vanity plate market.
> > For some reason, Brian and others keep ignoring this
> > argument, neither refuting it or engaging with it, just
> > pretending it does not exist. I am not sure why. I guess it
> > does not fit into their worldview.
> It's certainly my opinion that the gTLD market is spurious and
> the world would be better off without it. But I don't see it as
> deeply important; whether it succeeds or fails won't have any
> profound effects as far as I can see, except on the personal
> wealth of some individuals. So yes, I do see it as an
> administrative matter, subject to normal ethics, rules and
> regulations about doing business of course (which is why ICANN
> needs good corporate governance).
> > But one of the benefits of
> > inter-stakeholder dialogue like this is that prejudices and
> > fallacies that have credence in, say, the technical community
> > can be challenged and exposed as such by other groups.
> > Likewise, the technical community can puncture the shared
> > delusions of civil society or governments.
> >
> > I would like to invite Brian to attend the London ICANN
> > meeting. I am an educator, after all. I will give him a free
> > guided tour of what really happens at an ICANN meeting. I
> > will take him to several constituency meetings in the GNSO,
> > to the GAC, the public forums, to working group meetings.
> > There, he will learn that 95% of what goes on there is policy
> > and governance, and perhaps 5% involves technical
> > coordination or discussion.
> I don't doubt it for a moment, but it isn't policy and
> governance of "the Internet", it's mainly policy and governance
> of the vanity name business. (Thanks for the offer, but I won't
> be in the Northern Hemisphere in June.)
> > The important point here is not that Brian made an incorrect
> > assertion, but the significance of this linkage for the
> > broader "Internet governance" discussion. The reason we are
> > having a debate about Internet governance is that various
> > political forces would like to link their  policy objectives
> > to the administration of technical resources so that they can
> > be controlled and enforced more effectively. Full stop.
> Fully agreed.
> > The basic division in this struggle is between open,
> > decentralized and transnational governance institutions and
> > nation-state based institutions.
> >
> > You will not preserve or protect and free, open and viable
> > Internet by pretending that Internet governance does not
> > exist. You will not preserve the independence of the native,
> > private sector based internet governance institutions by
> > pretending that they only do "technical coordination" and
> > that policy is a different and disconnected world. That
> > strategy, being based on a fallacy, is unsustainable and will
> > only backfire. ICANN  is a perfect example of how it will
> > backfire. We have a global policy-making institution. Our
> > object should be to make the policies good policies, and to
> > facilitate full-fledged representation and participation of
> > all affected interests.
> >
> > The only serious and honest way to defend ICANN against ITU
> > or UN-based governance institutions is to argue that
> > bottom-up policy making rooted in voluntary or independent
> > associations of individuals is superior to nation-state based
> > governance.
> But this is exactly where the consistent failure since 1998 to
> separate the technical from the societal issues gets us into
> trouble. Attempting to prevent nation-states from having their
> own policies on societal issues is futile. Persuading them that
> MS stewardship of technical resources is in everybody's best
> interests (including the interests of nation states whose
> societal policies others might find abhorrent) is the best bet.
>    Brian
> > The main reason is that requirement for
> > globalized, as opposed to territorial, policy and
> > coordination, but can also argue that individuals in these MS
> > institutions can represent their own interests more directly
> > and more justly than states.
> >
> > --MM
> >
> > From: discuss-bounces at 1net.org
> > [mailto:discuss-bounces at 1net.org] On Behalf Of Jorge Amodio
> > Sent: Tuesday, December 31, 2013 12:39 AM To: Brian E
> > Carpenter Cc: discuss at 1net.org Subject: Re: [discuss] Time to
> > be more precise about Internet Governance
> >
> >
> >> Brian's thesis seems to be that Internet (or Cross-Border
> >> Information) Governance is by definition a system that
> >> governments must be involved in,
> > It's hard to imagine a debate about societal issues that
> > governments are not involved in. I have no difficulty
> > imagining technical administration without governmental
> > involvement. My thesis is that using a grand word like
> > 'governance' to describe technical administration is a source
> >  of confused thinking. If a word is understood in different
> > ways by different people, IMHO it's a good idea not to use
> > the word at all.
> >
> > Or make it very clear about the context and what you exactly
> > mean by using it, like the corporate governance of ICANN does
> > not equal Internet Governance.
> >
> > -Jorge
> >
> >
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