Notes from a meeting of the Administrative Committee of the ccTLD Constituency

San Jose, 22 June 1999


On the morning of July 22, 1999, members of the Administrative Committee of

the ccTLD Constituency met in San Jose, California. These were:

Nii Quaynor (AFTLD)

Kilnam Chon (APTLD)

Oscar Robles (LACTLD)

Antony Van Couvering (IATLD)

Peter de Blanc (for the NATLD)

Dennis Jennings (CENTR)

On the agenda were the following items:

1. Current Names Council Activities and possible ccTLD constituency responses

2. Procedures for electing Names Council members from the ccTLD constituency (ccTLD-C)

3. Working procedures of the Administrative Committee (AdCom) of the ccTLD-C

4. Creation of a ccTLD-Csecretariat

5. Liaison between the ccTLD-Cand the GAC

6. Functional classification of ccTLDs

7. Outreach

Results were as follows:

1. Current Names Council Activities and possible ccTLD-C responses

It was the unanimous opinion of the Administrative Committee (AdCom) that it

was imperative that the ccTLD-C pick its members to sit on the Names Council

of the DNSO, especially considering the speed with which the Names Council

was acting on matters which were of concern to the ccTLDs, to wit:

a. Closing of working groups to participation by interested parties

b. Working on policy instead of procedural issues - this is a "provisional"

Names Council only

c. Holding closed meetings

d. Lack of outreach and notice of upcoming and past activities

e. Attempts to stifle communication by ccTLD Observers on the Names Council

of what they had observed

f. Neglect by the Names Council in its affirmative duties, such as helping

to form the General Assembly.

The AdCom therefore decided that the ccTLD constituency should select

members to the Names Council with the shortest possible delay, especially

considering that the Names Council was holding a meeting on Friday June 25.

BUT several members were concerned that appointing Names Council members

would be a poor idea, because (a) it was undemocratic; (b) the appointed

member would have the unfair advantage of incumbency in an election, and (c)

because it could create dissension within the ccTLD constituency, which

would be harmful to the interests of all members.

THEREFORE the AdCom appointed the following three interim Names Council

Members, but with two important conditions:

Bill Semich (APTLD)

Nii Quaynor (AFTLD)

Fay Howard (CENTR)

The conditions were (1) that an election would be scheduled on a fair but

aggressive schedule, and (2) that the three selected Names Council members

would not be eligible to run in that election. (It should be noted that no

formal rule was put in place regarding these members' standing for election,

but all three indicated that they would not run. This was deemed sufficient

by all members of the AdCom.)

The AdCom also asked Antony Van Couvering to relay the news of the selection

of these three members of the Names Council to the ICANN Board.

Finally, the AdCom drafted the following letter and transmitted it to the

Names Council:

"To the Interim Names Council.

We, the undersigned, being the members of the Initial Administration

Committee of the ccTLD Constituency of the DNSO of ICANN, hereby advise the Interim

Names Council of the DNSO, that the following was adopted at its meeting on

22 June 1999 at San Jose.

Resolved: The Administration Committee of the ccTLD Constituency requests


requires that the Names Council of the DNSO of ICANN open up the Working

Groups of the DNSO to participation by all interested and expert parties,


there be no artificial deadlines or constraints on the times at which such

parties may join the Working Groups, and that all the work of such Working

Groups be conducted openly and transparently.

On behalf of the Administration Committee of the ccTLD Constituency.

Peter de Blanc, Kilnam Chon, Antony Van Couvering, Dennis Jennings, Nii

Quaynor, Oscar Robles."

2. Procedures for electing Names Council members from the ccTLD-C

The AdCom unamimously agreed to announce and hold elections on a schedule to

produce full-fledged Names Council members in time for the ICANN meeting in

Santiago, Chile, which begins August 23, 1999.

There were several problems/issues addressed:

A. Who gets to vote

B. Who will organize the election

C. Who will serve as the "trusted third party" to administer the vote and count ballots

D. Who will cover the costs

E. What is the schedule

A. Who gets to vote - This issue was thrown around at the informal ccTLD

open meeting the day before, and at that time Josh Elliot stepped in to help

out of a difficulty that could have cost us much time and agony. To

paraphrase, he said that it remained the responsibility of IANA to determine

who the authoritative contact(s) were for each ccTLD, and that he would

provide the list. Josh will provide the AdCom with a list of email

addresses for the July 1 announcement of the election, and also for the

balloting. Josh admits that the current IANA list is not perfect; it will

not be perfect for the election either. The AdCom felt that while the

electoral roll will never be perfect, we had no choice but to push on with

the election with the best list possible. The ballots will therefore be

sent to the IANA-supplied list of administrative contacts. This was

unanimously approved by the AdCom.

B. Who will organize the election - Since Nigel Roberts has shown an

understanding and an interest in the subject, the AdCom will ask him to

organize the logistics of the election. Again, this was unanimous.

C. Who will serve as the trusted third party - Nigel has mentioned the

Electoral Reform Society from the UK. If not them, then we will find

another. The administrative committee agreed that we must go ahead, and

therefore we must find the trusted third party, we have no choice.

D. Who will cover the costs - Again, the election must be held, and if there

are costs, they must be covered. Hopefully some of the better-off ccTLDs or

ccTLD groupings will step forward.

E. The election schedule is tentatively scheduled as follows:

July 1 - Official notification that an election will take place by sending

and email to the wwTLD list and to the adminstrative contacts ccTLDs as

determined by an updated list to be supplied by Josh Elliot of the IANA.

July 11 - Nominations are open.

July 25 - The "campaign." Candidates make their statements and try to

convince members to vote for them

August 8 - Balloting begins

August 15 - Balloting ends, votes are counted, and winners are appointed.

3. Working procedures of the ccTLD Constituency Administrative Committee

Openness - The AdCom agreed unanimously that it did not exist as an

executive committee, but rather as a group to manage and facilitate

consensus of its members. (The Adcom recognized its limited role in spite

of the extraordinary step of selecting interim Names Council members. In

this case, the Adcom representatives felt that a strong consensus within

their groups did exist, even if the question had not been put to them

formally.) The Adcom agreed that all committee meetings would be open, and

that where possible electronic remote participation would be made available

(e.g., any member could listen in on a teleconference.) ccTLD-C members who

are not committee members will be asked to listen in, not speak, although it

was felt that this rule could be informally relaxed without objection from

other committee members.

Schedule - A teleconference was scheduled for July 1, for 9 a.m. Eastern

(U.S.) time. Arrangements for a bridge have not yet been made; it is hoped

that a company like MCI will be able to help.

Costs - For teleconferences and the like, it was determined that every

participant must bear his or her own cost, be they a committee member or

not. It was felt that other costs (e.g. the cost of a bridge) could be

apportioned on an ad hoc basis.

Members of the ccTLD-C groups - For the moment, these consist of the

selected representatives of 5 regional groups plus the IATLD. The rule is

that any group of ten or more would be recognized and could appoint a

representative. The question arose, Must the membership of these groups be

mutually exclusive? The committee determined that a member could belong to

more than one group, but that for purposes of voting the member must choose.

In other words, if a question were being put to a group in order to

determine the consensus of that group, the member would have to declare in

which group he or she was voting, and to vote in only that group. As an

example, when choosing representatives for the AdCom, Bill Semich, the

member from .NU who is both a member of the APTLD and the IATLD, would have

to choose whether to as an APTLD member or as an IATLD member; he could not

vote in both groups.

Study Groups - The AdCom decided that it could commission study groups if

necessary. Questions of cost and participation were not addressed.

4. Creation of a ccTLD constituency secretariat

The AdCom thought that it was not a good idea to create a permanent

secretariat yet. Rather, the function of the secretariat should rotate, and

at the moment should rotate on a regional basis, following the ICANN Board

World Tour. Since the next meeting is in Santiago, Oscar Robles of the

LACTLD agreed to perform the function of the Secretariat until that time.

5. Liaison between the ccTLD constituency and the GAC

Andrew McLaughlin, a member of the ICANN staff, stopped in for a half hour

to see if he could help us by answering any questions about the ICANN

bylaws. We asked him about a liaison to the GAC, which has been a large

concern of some members. Specifically, we asked him about the possibility

of a liaison. He replied that it was the view of the ICANN Board that it

was best to forego this idea, for the following reasons: (1) It would be

better to have governments work with each other, in the style that

governments do - that there would be culture clash (2) That a liaison would

be a double-edged sword - If the ccTLD constituency had an Observer in the

GAC meetings, they would want one in our meetings, and (3) It is the policy

of the ICANN Board that Governments have an advisory role only, whereas the

SOs have a much stronger position - the Board will implement SO

recommendations unless there are reasons not to (these are enumerated in the

ICANN Bylaws). Thus governmental involvement in the SOs, even through a

liaison, would constitute an expansion of their powers that the ICANN Board

feels is inappropriate. The Administrative Committee felt that until we

have some evidence that the GAC is influencing the ICANN Board

inappropriately, we should let this sleeping dog lie.

6. Functional classification of ccTLDs

There was a question about whether it would be a good idea to call TLDs

"open" or "closed" or indeed to divide them up in different ways. The idea

was quickly tabled as being inappropriate for the Administrative Committee.

7. Outreach

This agenda item was not addressed directly, but throughout the discussion

of the other items it was several times expressed that all ccTLDs should at

a minimum be well informed of the DNSO ccTLD constituency proceedings. It

is hoped that Josh Elliot's improved list will aid in this effort.