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ICANN Subject to the Data Quality Act

The Center for Regulatory Effectiveness (CRE) has concluded that the U.S. Data Quality Act applies to ICANN since the organization performs its functions under specific agreements with the Department of Commerce's National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA). NTIA's Data Quality guidelines [PDF] define "sponsored" dissemination of information as "situations where the Agency has directed a third party to distribute or release information, or where the Agency has the authority to review and approve the information before release."

In addition to fulfilling its legal duties, ICANN compliance with the Data Quality Act would address two paramount concerns raised by numerous critics of the organization: 1) that ICANN policy decisions are not reached through an open, transparent process; and 2) that ICANN does not provide a fair and impartial public process for seeking redress of its decisions.

CRE notified Dr. Twomey, President and Chief Executive Officer of ICANN, of the applicability of the Data Quality Act to ICANN in a detailed letter of October 29th. CRE asked ICANN for a meeting to discuss the issue of the applicability of the Data Quality Act to ICANN since CRE received no communication in response to the letter. In mid-December ICANN agreed to a January 23rd meeting with CRE.  Notwithstanding CRE's trip to ICANN's headquarters in California for the scheduled meeting, the organization refused at the last moment to meet with CRE. CRE now knows how Dr. Twomey felt when he was expelled from an ICANN-related planning meeting in Geneva.

Further details, including CRE's letter to ICANN, on ICANNfocus.org.

By Bruce Levinson, SVP, Regulatory Intervention - Center for Regulatory Effectiveness
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