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Ask Not What ICANN Can Do for You, But What You Can Do for ICANN

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Jeff Neuman

In recent weeks, you may have seen several articles asking that "ICANN", the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers, move more expeditiously to open up the next application window for new gTLDs. As one commenter wrote "Ask a Board member or ICANN staff when they expect the next application window to open, and they will inevitably suggest 2020 — another three years away. Any reasonable person would agree that eight years for a second application window is anything but expeditious, and some might say potentially anti-competitive." Rather than pointing the finger, maybe it's time to turn the question on its head and ask, "what can we do to help move things forward?"

As one of the co-chairs of ICANN Policy Development Process working on Subsequent Procedures for the introduction of New gTLDs, I certainly understand the requests to move more quickly. That said, we need to stop asking others, like the ICANN Board, to move in a top-down fashion to start a new process when we are not actively participating in the process to enable that new application window to occur in the ICANN multi-stakeholder bottom-up process. We, the community, actually control our own destiny in this regard.

Yes, it has been a number of years since the last round closed. But we, as a community, have all known the milestones that needed to be achieved before the ICANN Board could approve the next application window. Namely, they include completion of the Competition, Consumer Choice and Trust Review (CCT-RT), the ICANN staff implementation review, and the Policy Development Process on Subsequent Procedures.

To date, I would argue that ICANN staff are the only ones that have completed their deliverable, the implementation review. The CCT-RT is several months behind schedule, and the PDP on Subsequent Procedures is making good progress. However, like many PDPs, there is certainly a lack of active participation from those that would like to see the process move more quickly. So rather than complaining to the ICANN Board about the speed of the process, please join the PDP on Subsequent Procedures and actively participate. Submit proposals rather than just complaining about things you didn't like. Respond to questions and surveys when they are released. NOTE: Shortly a Community Comment period will open up with a number of questions on improvements that can be made. This is exactly the kind of opportunity that, with plenty of community engagement, could help move things forward, so please respond in a timely manner.

In short, please help us help you. If you want things to move more quickly, get involved.

By Jeff Neuman, Senior Vice President, Valideus USA

Related topics: ICANN, Top-Level Domains

 
   

Comments

Just signed up Jean Guillon  –  Feb 23, 2017 7:02 AM PDT

"Your response has been recorded". Let's see what happens next.

As expected... Jean Guillon  –  Feb 23, 2017 12:29 PM PDT

...the SOI procedure (in English only) is so awful…

How do you expect a new comer to understand what he has to answer to the "constituency" question?

If no one understands why no one participates at ICANN, just go through this procedure and you have your answer.

Still on it…

Working on the draft Jean Guillon  –  Feb 28, 2017 5:00 AM PDT

The content of the document is extremely interesting. It looks like future changes are there. This doc is a must-read.

It's Not Quite So Simple Ayden Férdeline  –  Feb 23, 2017 8:38 AM PDT

I agree with the sentiment that we in the community should be more involved. But I also find myself wanting to quote Annemarie Bridy, who wrote, ICANN "is notoriously byzantine, consisting of scores of Advisory Committees, Supporting Organizations, standing committees, working groups, review teams, and task forces. All of these are known by acronyms that are a part of an ICANN-specific vernacular that insiders speak fluently. For the uninitiated, understanding conversations about ICANN’s structure and internal operations almost literally requires a translator. Put another way, informational barriers to entry in the ICANN universe are relatively high, and ICANN is consequently poorly understood by anyone whose curiosity about it is only casual or shallow." Sadly, it just isn't so easy to actively participate in a working group. That doesn't mean we shouldn't try, of course…

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