Governmental Advisory Committee – Communique
FRIDAY, 14 JULY 2000 - The Governmental Advisory Committee of the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers held its sixth meeting yesterday and today in Yokohama. The attending Committee members, representing 31 national governments, distinct economies as recognised in international fora, and multinational governmental and treaty organisations, reflecting representation from all of ICANN’s geographic regions, 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, ICANN activities, and the administration of the country code top level domains:
A. With regard to ICANN’s funding and budget:
The governments, public authorities and organisations that comprise the GAC support ICANN; it is recognised that ensuring that ICANN has a sufficient level of funding is a crucial component of enabling it to complete the tasks for which it was created. Accordingly, it is important that ICANN receive a level of funding which will allow it to fulfil its responsibilities, including consensus development and ensuring the reliable technical operation of the domain name system.
It is noted that through its document “Principles for the Delegation and Administration of Country Code Top Level Domains” (the GAC Principles), the GAC has indicated its view that ccTLD administrators should contribute towards the funding of ICANN in accordance with an equitable scale, based on ICANN’s total funding requirements (including reserves), developed by ICANN on the basis of consensus.
With regard to the contribution for the past fiscal year, the view of the GAC is that ccTLDs should pay the prescribed contribution contained in ICANN’s 1999-2000 Budget.
Recognising that situations may differ among various ccTLDs, the GAC encourages ccTLDs to explore means appropriate to their particular circumstances to ensure payment of their contribution to ICANN within a reasonable time frame.
With respect to the future allocation of ICANN’s cost recover obligations, the GAC recommends that ICANN develop and broadly communicate procedures to ensure that consensus exists with respect to funding allocations. Those procedures should spell out the obligation of all parties to participate in opportunities such as notice and comment periods designed to determine whether or not consensus is present.
As decisions within ICANN are based on consensus, the GAC encourages ICANN’s Task Force on Funding, the ccTLD community and others to continue their efforts to achieve consensus on the determination of:
1. the future appropriate share of ICANN’s budget contributed to by all relevant participants; and
2. the appropriate criteria and mechanism for calculating the amount of each ccTLD’s annual contribution to the funding of ICANN.
The GAC encourages ICANN to present the results of this work in time for its next round of meetings in November 2000.
B. With regard to the addition of new top level domains (TLDs):
That this is a very important area and the GAC wishes to consider it further
C. With regard to the delegation and administration of country code top level domains (ccTLDs):
The GAC has had constructive discussions with the ccTLD Constituency of the DNSO. It is noted that there are many areas of common ground between the GAC and the ccTLD Constituency, however there are also a number of areas where further discussion should be undertaken.
The GAC reconfirmed its support for the GAC Document “Principles for the Delegation and Administration of Country Code Top Level Domains”. The GAC noted in particular that while governments and public authorities need not be involved in day to day decision making, they exercise ultimate public policy authority, representing the interests of the people for which the ccTLD has been delegated.
In order to minimize prejudice (potential or otherwise) ICANN should not enter into any contractual arrangements with ccTLD administrators of ccTLDs for which redelegation requests are pending.
The GAC invites ICANN, as a first step, to write to the relevant governments and public authorities to ascertain their views concerning the current delegation for the ccTLDs that correspond to their jurisdictions.
The GAC advises ICANN not to enter into contracts with any ccTLD registries until they have received the relevant communication, as referred to later in this Communique, from the relevant government or public authority.
Thereafter, the GAC encourages that any future contracts between ICANN and ccTLD administrators should reflect the administrators’ commitment to be bound by the GAC Principles (as they are implemented by the relevant government or public authority) and minimize the liability of ICANN for implementing a redelegation according to these principles.
With reference to the draft ccTLD Manager / ICANN Status Quo Agreement, the GAC:
a) notes that unfortunately, given the short time period for comments in preparation for Yokohama, the GAC has not had sufficient time to consider and comment on this matter;
b) notes that this is a discussion document from the ICANN staff and that ICANN will not act on this before full consultation; and
c) considers that the issues in this document need thorough discussion to take full account of the view of governments and public authorities and they will be examined by the GAC for consistency with the GAC Principles document, and notably the communication-based regime proposed by the GAC
D. With regard to the definition of ICANN’s Geographic Regions:
ICANN should make reference to existing international norms for regional distribution of countries.
The GAC thanks the Japanese government, the Yokohama Host Committee, the Japan Network Information Centre (JPNIC) and the sponsors for hosting its meeting.
The next face-to-face meeting of the GAC will be held in November 2000 in Marina Del Rey to coincide with ICANN’s next round of meetings.