[discuss] accountability

DAVID JOHNSON davidr.johnson at verizon.net
Sat May 10 01:07:28 UTC 2014

I think this is a false dichotomy.
The proposal is not to have a multi-stakeholder operation overseeing icann as a multi-stakeholder process.
That would lead to a "turtles all the way up" absurdity.

The problem is to come up with some specific set of promises that ICANN could make, by contract, regarding what it will and will not do.
E.g., not use the monopoly control of the root to regulate content.
Or impose contract conditions not supported by consensus among affected parties.

The question is to whom this promise would be made -- and would that counter party be appropriately trusted with decisions on when to enforce it?
That would be an easier question if we created a judicial (arbitration) branch that could hear the case.

Maybe it is not sufficient to allow only registries to "bring the case" -- but the alternative would be to give registrants standing.
All this could be done by contract, without creating any new fluffy free standing institutions.

If we can agree on the list of core obligations we would want an icann of the future to be bound by, surely we can agree on some rules of "standing" re what groups can bring a case to hold them to it.


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