[discuss] [IANAxfer] Two accountability questions - help pls- Workshop 23 - ICANN accountability

John Curran jcurran at istaff.org
Thu Sep 4 17:12:37 UTC 2014

On Sep 4, 2014, at 7:50 PM, Seth Johnson <seth.p.johnson at gmail.com> wrote:

> Well, presuming that we're speaking very generally, not just
> particular operations/functions, one approximation of rooting things
> in a context of the priority of rights might be something like a
> "House of Rights."  That's where you have an organ that is coordinate
> to the topmost regular processes, whose function is to represent local
> governments (some of which are more free than others, of course) as
> the source of fundamental liberties.  It would not be responsible for
> day-to-day "operations" or "policy development," but simply veto power
> and recommendations.  That is, participants in this body would
> politick among themselves to produce majorities that would override
> the regular process on the basis of fundamental liberties, and
> supplement these decisions with recommendations.

I am rather confused by this structure... Are you proposing that it 
would be superior to the present Internet registry policy development 
organizations such as the gNSO, RIRs, and IETF?   I will admit that 
the first time that the IANA fails to follow properly developed policy
(done via open, transparent, and inclusive processes), we're going to 
have just constitutional crisis of sorts, and your House of Rights 
seems to be ready-made to bring about such an event.

> Not the same, even a proposition of enormity, but once we start facing
> the fact that we're losing our stewardship context, this would be
> evident as the sort of things you really have to do as a an "interim"
> kind of framework for doing things.  This is a way you could have a
> definitive register of fundamental liberties, giving an approximation
> of the context we want by recognizing liberties as deriving from
> governments set up by their respective peoples, while the regular
> conduct can be set up in a variety of perfectly typical, everyday ways
> and proceed much as freely as our local governments do.  It just
> establishes a really strong "representative organ," limited to veto
> power and recommendations.

What rights are you asserting to these registries of Internet identifiers,
and on what are they based on?  These registries are created via the efforts
of the IETF in specification of protocols which have certain parameters,
and these parameters must have values.  These tables of values are called
"registries", and more than 1000 of them are maintained by the IANA without
any of your framework above.  A small handful of them (DNS names, IP addresses)
are assigned to real-world entities such as businesses, individuals, and
governments, with corresponding real-world interest in how they are managed.
The IETF doesn't worry about these very much (aside from the hard technical 
requirements for their maintenance) and leaves the affected community to
manage them via open and transparent policy development processes.  Please
explain where "fundamental liberties" are involved in this model?

> I would hold that you're not really seriously dealing with the
> international arena's implications unless you see that this sort of
> conception is what's really needed.

That may be the case, but that first presumes that my lack of perceived 
need is subsequent to first understanding what is being proposed, and at 
present I'm still having some real challenges understanding your proposal.


Disclaimer: my views alone.

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