Milton Mueller gave the ICANN board an A for effort following the fairly large number of resolutions it passed in its meeting last Friday, but an F for substance. Continue reading Milton Mueller finds ICANN's Nairobi Board resolutions "painful to read"
Milton Mueller gave the ICANN board an A for effort following the fairly large number of resolutions it passed in its meeting last Friday, but an F for substance.
Mueller gave his reasons on a number of issues including:
- “the Board [choosing] to ignore its independent review panel and refused to rectify what was officially determined to be unfair and discriminatory treatment” on the .XXX application
- issuing “a needlessly biased and poorly worded resolution that was an attempt to clarify things but probably did the opposite” on vertical integration
- “bending over backwards to accommodate trademark interests at the expense of market diversity, as most of the resolutions passed refer to various aspects of how to protect trademark owners from the horrifying prospect of letting people register names under new TLDs”
- “in response to complaints that it had set the fee bar for new gTLDs too high, the Board issued a vague instruction to its Advisory Committees and Supporting Organizations ‘develop a sustainable approach to providing support to applicants requiring assistance in applying for and operating new gTLDs.'”
To read the posting by Milton Mueller in full on the Internet Governance Project blog, see:
In its latest meeting on the issue, the ICANN board decided on Friday that they will proceed with plans to hold their 37th meeting in Nairobi, Kenya, after considering all the security issues that have been raised in recent weeks.
As part of its considerations, the ICANN board was advised that there will be enhanced security measures during the meeting. However for those not attending the board has vowed to have enhanced remote participation tools.
ICANN also asked all those who are currently registered to cancel their registration if they were unable to attend last Tuesday (15th). Between Tuesday and Thursday there had been 72 cancellations and 23 new registrations. Overall registrations as of Thursday were 738.
ICANN staff will be actively monitoring the security situation in Nairobi up to and through the meeting. While ICANN will not be posting regular updates between now and the meeting, any significant new news will be promptly posted on the ICANN Nairobi meeting website at nbo.icann.org.
ICANN has given another update on the situation with their planning to deal with the security issues at the upcoming meeting in Nairobi in March. While they continue to monitor the situation, there will also be increased access to remote participation and there is a board meeting scheduled for 19 February to “give the Board a final opportunity to review the situation and plans.”There will also be a policy update briefing meeting provided by ICANN Policy Staff on Thursday, 25 February at 13.00 and 19.00 UTC, summarising policy issues across the different ICANN Supporting Organizations, namely the Generic Names Supporting Organization (GNSO), Country Code Names Supporting Organization (ccNSO) and Address Supporting Organization (ASO). Amongst other topics, updates will be provided on:
- GNSO Improvements
- GNSO Registration Abuse Policies Working Group
- GNSO Whois Studies
- GNSO Vertical Integration Policy Development Process
- ccNSO IDN PDP
- ccNSO Delegation and Re-delegation Working Group
- ccNSO Strategic and Operational Plan Working Group
- ASO Global policy for handling IPv4 address space.
The two sessions are duplicates, scheduled to accommodate different time zones. Each session, scheduled to run for 90 minutes, will be conducted in English only. The meeting will be run in Adobe Connect with a slide presentation along with a dial-in conference bridge for audio.Participants will have opportunity to ask questions at the end of each session. During the course of the webinar, questions may be submitted using the Q&A function of Adobe Connect. If you are not able to participate in either of the live sessions, the slides and MP3 will be made available shortly after the meeting. The policy staff is always available to answer any questions that you email to email@example.com.In order to participate, ICANN requests people to please RSVP via email to the GNSO Secretariat (firstname.lastname@example.org) to receive the call details. The RSVP should indicate which call you would like to join, 13.00 UTC or 19.00 UTC (to convert those times into your local time, see: www.timeanddate.com/worldclock/fixedform.html). ICANN will send an email reminder before the event with log-in and dial-in details. Please DO NOT RSVP to any other ICANN staff members email address.For more information on remote participation opportunities during the ICANN Nairobi meeting, see:
blog.icann.org/2010/02/remote-participation-for-nairobi-details-available/For updates on security issues, see:
There has been an enhanced, on the ground commitment for additional security by local members of the Kenyan security committee in preparation for the upcoming ICANN meeting to be held in the country’s capital, with the group working closely with the on-site security experts that ICANN has under contract, ICANN has announced in a security update on the upcoming meeting.
ICANN is also investigating enhancing remote participation options in the lead up to the meeting as they recognise a number of people will not be attending regardless.
The ICANN update says the “Kenya National Intelligence Service (NISIS) has increased its efforts to mitigate potential terrorist threats. The Kenya Anti-terrorist Police Unit (ATPU) is currently actively involved in the security planning process and has already started to put detection, as well as other preventative measures in place. The Kenya Diplomatic Protection unit has also been activated to assist with the security of the conference. Additionally, covert and overt security forces are being deployed at the KICC, hotels and venues where official functions will be held. Additionally, the airport, and road from the airport to hotels will be actively monitored and patrolled by security forces.”
And while some such as GoDaddy and Neustar have both said they will not be sending representatives to the meeting, others such as the “ccNSO is expecting to participate in the Nairobi meeting, as planned, with all or most all counsellors in attendance” while it is believed “many in At Large have expressed the same view.”
The full text of the most recent security announcement from ICANN is below:
Monday, 15 February 2010
ICANN’s internal team – including staff from the US (California, Texas, New Jersey), France and Niger – continued to meet daily over the weekend to discuss and share information regarding the ICANN Nairobi meeting.
Today and last night, we had direct contact with the local Kenyan members of the security planning committee, and there has been an enhanced, on the ground commitment for additional security and this group will work closely with the on-site security experts that ICANN has under contract. ICANN’s security team thinks these are strong, positive steps.
The Kenya National Intelligence Service (NISIS) has increased its efforts to mitigate potential terrorist threats. The Kenya Anti-terrorist Police Unit (ATPU) is currently actively involved in the security planning process and has already started to put detection, as well as other preventative measures in place. The Kenya Diplomatic Protection unit has also been activated to assist with the security of the conference. Additionally, covert and overt security forces are being deployed at the KICC, hotels and venues where official functions will be held. Additionally, the airport, and road from the airport to hotels will be actively monitored and patrolled by security forces.
It is important for delegates to understand that ensuring a safe conference is a very important to the Government of Kenya. The country relies heavily on tourism and strives to be a preferred destination for international conferences.
We are all seeing community members starting to react to the situation in Kenya, as they perceive it. There have been posted letters from Neustar and GoDaddy, among others, indicating that they will not attend or send representatives. Also, the Intellectual Property Constituency (IPC) has decided to hold an alternative meeting in New York.
Others in the community are re-confirming their attendance in Nairobi. In a note from ccNSO Chair, Chris Disspain, to be posted today, he has confirmed that the ccNSO is expecting to participate in the Nairobi meeting, as planned, with all or most all counsellors in attendance. Less formally, I’ve heard that many in At Large have expressed the same view.
So, where does this leave all of us?
The first order of business, is that ICANN will continue to monitor the status in Nairobi, and will share all relevant information with the community, in accordance with our goal to be fully transparent. I will ensure we do that on an ongoing basis.
We are left with a situation where some people would choose to attend the meeting, and some choose not to attend, based on exactly the same information. One answer will clearly not work for all.
One alternative being discussed is how to better support a meeting where remote participation is going to be a more significant part of the meeting. What does enhanced remote participation look like in the context of an ICANN meeting? Remote participation is a challenge when a minority of participants are using that mode; if many were, how effective could that be? How would this work with scheduling, time zones, and the expected meeting formats we’ve used? Any comments you have on this would be greatly appreciated. Look for a posting on the ICANN blog, where you can respond directly.
This ICANN announcement and more up to date information are available from:
Following a special meeting of the ICANN Board of Directors on Friday, Rod Beckstrom, ICANN’s CEO, has announced via a posting on the ICANN blog that the Nairobi meeting will go ahead as planned in March. Continue reading ICANN's Nairobi Meeting To Go Ahead Despite Security Concerns
Following a special meeting of the ICANN Board of Directors on Friday, Rod Beckstrom, ICANN’s CEO, has announced via a posting on the ICANN blog that the Nairobi meeting will go ahead as planned in March.It had been heavily rumoured the meeting would not go ahead, with alternatives including cities in Russia, Tunisia and the US being considered.However the concerns came to nought following the meeting. Following a re-examination of the security issues, and the option of moving the meeting out of the downtown Nairobi area to a suburb, but no suitable venue was available, the CEO recommended to the board that the meeting go ahead, but with additional measures to be taken to deal with security issues.The posting by Beckstrom on the ICANN blog is available at:
blog.icann.org/2010/01/icann-remains-committed-to-nairobi-and-africa/To read my earlier posting on the possibility of moving the meeting and the security concerns, see:
Rumours have been circulating in recent days that ICANN are reconsidering holding their meeting in Nairobi in March. These rumours have been confirmed to be more than that with ICANN announcing they will be holding a special meeting of the ICANN Board of Directors on 22 January.The meeting, to be held by teleconference on 22 January 2010 at 19:00 UTC is to assess plans for the upcoming meeting in Nairobi, and to consider the security concerns raised by community members in light of recent events.The rumours were enough for a couple of articles to be published by African ICANN watcher Rebecca Wanjiku on her blog.Wanjiku says “last Friday’s fracas with the Muslims seems to have tipped the balance; ICANN now is contemplating moving the meeting to another safer city.”Wanjiku has pleaded for ICANN to not shun Nairobi, saying that while there are security issues, these are no more than what were encountered in Mexico. And that to have an ICANN meeting in Nairobi is important to raise the profile of the internet in the region and give domain names a profile amongst the population. She believes that holding an ICANN meeting in Nairobi will help raise hte profile of issues such as making “meaningful investments in critical infrastructure,” something that is severely lacking on the continent.Wanjiku says” Nairobi is safe, and people go on with their business as usual.” She also says that “ICANN is important, but so are we! We are in Kenya, we are not planning to move, people are holding international meetings every day.”While Wanjiku has said Nairobi is safe, the British and Australian foreign offices beg to differThe Australian Department of Foreign Affairs has advised travellers to Kenya to “exercise a high degree of caution in Kenya at this time due to the high risk of terrorist attack, civil unrest and high crime levels.” DFAT also says they “are receiving an increasing number of reports that terrorists may be planning attacks against a range of targets in Kenya, including Kenyan or Western interests.”However it is in the suburbs and along border regions that the greatest problems lie.The British Foreign and Commonwealth Office advice is similar to that from Australia. They say “there is a high threat from terrorism in Kenya. Attacks could be indiscriminate, including in places frequented by expatriates and foreign travelers.” They note there have been some terrorist attacks, but that these were back in 2002.The FCO advises “against all but essential travel to low income areas of Nairobi, including all township or slum areas, which experience high crime levels.”But they also note that “123,322 British Nationals visited Kenya in 2008. 114 British nationals required consular assistance in Kenya in the period 01 April 2008 – 31 March 2009 for the following types of incident, deaths (29 cases), hospitalisations (22 cases), and arrests, for a variety of offences (41 cases). During this period assistance was also requested with regard to lost or stolen passports (127 cases).”For the full advice from both the Australian and British governments, see: