Communique of the Government Advisory Committee
August 24, 1999
Santiago, Chile


TUESDAY, 24 AUGUST 1999 - The Governmental Advisory Committee of the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers held its third meeting today. The attending Committee members, representing over 30 national governments, distinct economies as recognised in international fora, and multinational governmental and treaty organisations, issued the following statement:

The Governmental Advisory Committee (GAC) has had fruitful discussions around substantive issues relating to the usage of the Internet across the worldwide community and the administration of the country code top level domains. The GAC initiated a positive and constructive process for addressing these and other significant Internet policy issues, and as a consequence makes the following recommendations to the ICANN Board:

    1. With regard to ICANNís Proposed Interim Policy for Geographic Diversity on the ICANN Board of Directors:
    2. The GAC supports the underlying principles of geographic diversity and international representation in the context of ICANN. The GAC believes that these principles are best implemented using the criterion of citizenship, as specified in the By-laws of ICANN, to determine the eligibility of directors of the board of ICANN and of participants in the Councils of the Supporting Organizations. In addition, taking into consideration the practicality of determining the electorate, the GAC supports the use of residency as the criterion for determining the eligibility of the electorate.

    3. With regard to principles for the delegation of management for country code top level domains:

1. The Committee reaffirmed its May resolution that the Internet naming system is a public resource and that the management of a TLD Registry must be in the public interest.

2. Accordingly, the GAC considers that no private intellectual or other property rights inhere to the TLD itself nor accrue to the delegated manager of the TLD as the result of such delegation.

3. The GAC also reaffirmed that the delegation of a ccTLD Registry is subject to the ultimate authority of the relevant public authority or government. The GAC discussed the development of best practices for the administration of ccTLDs and agreed to continue this discussion.

The next face-to-face meeting of the GAC will be held on 2 November 1999 in Los Angeles, to coincide with ICANNís next round of meetings.

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For additional technical information, please contact:

Ben Edelman and John Wilbanks
Berkman Center for Internet & Society at Harvard Law School