ASO AC Teleconference 15 October 2003

AC Attendees:

Raimundo Beca (RB)
Eric Decker (ED)
Hartmut Glaser (HG)
Hans Petter Holen (HH)
Sabine Jaume (SJ)
Kim Hubbard (KH)
Kenny Huang (KHU)
Mark McFadden (MM)
Julian Dunayevich (JD)


Adiel Aplogan (AA)








Anne Lord, ASO Secretariat (SEC-AL)
Sam Dickinson, ASO Secretariat (SEC-SD)




  1. Introductions and welcome to AC members
  2. Apologies received
  3. Agenda bashing
  4. Address Council discussion of proposed NRO documents

    1. Introductions and welcome to AC members

The Chair opened the meeting at 21:55 UTC. AL called the role of the AC from the various regions.

    1. Apologies received

Apologies were received from: Takashi Arano, Wilfried Woeber, and Eric Decker.

    1. Agenda bashing

      • The process by which the proposal documents are reviewed
      • Comments/questions about the proposed letter to ICANN
      • The proposed agreement to create the NRO
      • The proposed MoU between the NRO and ICANN
      • Action AC take resulting from the previous items

The Chair reviewed the draft agenda and clarified the NRO issues that would be discussed:

    1. Address Council discussion of proposed NRO documents

MM noted that the RIRs had posted the NRO docs and that the comment period would close at midnight on 22 October. The RIRs then plan to sign the open letter to ICANN on 24 October at the ARIN meeting.

4.1 The process by which the proposal documents are reviewed

MM opened the floor to discussion.

In response to a question by KH, MM explained that the MoU would be submitted separately from the proposed letter as ICANN’s 30 day rule would need to be followed.

MM asked if anyone shared his concerns expressed on the ac-coord mailing list that there had been no public meetings to discuss the NRO. KH noted that the NRO would be discussed at the ARIN meeting close to the end of the comment period.

HH asked if his assumption that it was within the statutes of the RIRs to to create the NRO without the approval of ICANN was correct. RB confirmed that it was correct that no authorisation was needed from ICANN to set up the NRO.

SJ noted that the current NRO proposal had only been published three weeks previously. HH commented that the blueprint for reform, which was more radical than the NRO proposal, had been circulated some time ago, but had stimulated little discussion.

MM noted that there were a number of examples where RIRs had a co-ordinated approach to policy and suggested that the NRO proposal was another example of this. However, he noted that while the RIRs have always brought proposals to their communities for approval, the NRO proposal until now had not been brought to the community.

HH noted that process concerns seem at this stage to be an ARIN issue. There were no formal expressions of support for the concerns raised by MM.

HG noted that while ASO MoU was signed by ICANN and the four RIRs, the RIRs did not have representation at ICANN and tried to address this in the evolution of ICANN process by introducing a new relationship between the two groups. He explained that, from the LACNIC point of view, the relationship between ICANN and the ASO AC was weak. The NRO proposal addressed these issued by aiming to enhance communication between the community and ICANN. He also noted that the NRO proposal was not a policy document but an administrative document.

HH noted that while the AC had been useful in coordinating between the RIRs and ICANN, the AC had been often been an entity outside the ICANN – RIR process. He noted that negotiating contracts by open process was difficult.

He explained that if the proposal was discussed at a meeting for each RIR, it would take at least half a year; and to follow up and approve the NRO at subsequent RIR meetings would take another half a year.

KH suggested that it would be acceptable if the MoU was discussed later in the process. However, HH stated that it was important to discuss the MoU at the same time as the proposal.

4.2 Comments/questions about the proposed letter to ICANN

MM opened discussion to the floor.

HH stated that he did not have any strong reaction to the letter as it was very clearly written. SJ agreed and stated that she had focused on the NRO proposal itself.

4.3 The proposed agreement to create the NRO

MM asked the members of the AC for comments.

SJ noted that she had already posted some comments on the NRO comment list but that her main concern was that the NRO seemed to mix policy with administration.

HG explained that the NRO EC would be responsible for external communications and that policy ratification could only achieved by ICANN as defined in the MoU. Therefore, the NRO EC was not designed to make policy. However, if ICANN failed, the EC would then take on responsibility to ratify or reject policies. SJ suggested these responsibilities were not clear in the proposal. HH explained that is was not an uncommon situation to have an executive branch of government that also has some role in the policy making process.

SJ suggested that the NRO text should include some text from the ASO MoU.

HH noted that if the RIRs set up the NRO, the RIRs would have a mechanism to work on their own. If ICANN did not sign an MoU with the NRO, ICANN would be effectively left out of the IP policy process. KH suggested that the AC needed to decide if executive involvement in policy ratification was the right way to proceed. She pointed out that if ICANN was disbanded, there would be no MoU anyway.

KH noted that policy decisions in ARIN were based solely on members and not the ARIN Board. HH noted that he thought the NRO proposal had some similarity to ARIN by-laws. KH commented that if ICANN were to disband, the role of the NRO EC would be different to its current proposed role.

MM noted that in section 6a of the proposed agreement, it states that the NRO EC can ratify or reject policies. He noted that there was no reference to this only being possible if the MOU has been signed. MM was concerned that if the NRO EC consisted of one person selected by each RIR, it would not be a bottom up policy process. KH suggested clarifying the section to state that the policies ratified by the NRO EC would be based on member decisions in each RIR region.

MM suggested that elected members could sit on the NRO EC. KH suggested that it was appropriate to have the EC consisting of CEOs of RIRs since the CEOs currently have the job of negotiating with ICANN. However, MM suggested that the CEOs should not have the job of ratifying policy. HH suggested that maybe the NRO EC should only make decisions based on recommendations by the Numbers Council (NC).

KH suggested adding a statement to the agreement that policy can only be decided by following the process stated in the MoU. HG agreed that this would reflect the bottom up process. There was not consensus for this suggestion however.

KH noted that the Numbers Council (NC) would consist of two members elected from each region as well as one selected by the board from each RIR. She noted that the selected member could be an RIR staff member and questioned why this was so. RB explained that the ASO AC had been criticized for working without consulting RIRs. To be more representative of the RIRs concerns with ICANN, it would be useful to have RIR representation on the council.

MM noted that the point of having a staff member on the NRO NC was apparently to make sure that the policies were practical to implement. But this inferred that elected members were not capable of understanding the practical effects of policies, an inference MM found unacceptable. HH explained that the idea had been to reduce the number of people on the NC so it could be more efficient, but to also ensure that it could work with the RIRs.

RB noted that the AC has been criticized for its lack of representativeness of the RIRs. 1/3 of the NC seems a fair compromise. He believes that HG’s and his own experience seating both at the AC and the LACNIC Board has proven to be helpful.

SJ suggested that perhaps to counter arguments against RIR staff selected for the NC, with 2/3 of the votes coming from the community, and 1/3 from the RIRs, provided that the whole NC was voting, the majority of the voting rights (2/3) would express the voice of the community.

HH noted that the role of the NC was to ensure that process has been followed, not to decide if policy is good or bad.

MM noted that in section 11 of the agreement, it was stated that the NC only 1) reviews policies to check RIR procedures are followed, 2) posts a last call for comments on the policy, and 3) makes recommendations on whether correct procedures have been followed. KH agreed with the NC’s functions but questioned if the NC’s only responsibility to ICANN was to tell whether correct process has been followed. RB explained that the NC would also provide advice and opinions to ICANN, just as the ASO AC currently does.

MM noted that contrary to text in section 3, number 4 of the MoU, which stated that the NC would advise ICANN on address management policies, he thought it would be the NRO EC that fulfilling that role.

In response to a question by SJ, HG explained that the term “in conjunction with the RIRs” meant “on behalf of the RIRs”. He acknowledged that this wasn’t clear and that the text could be re-written.

HH confirmed that AA was correct in understanding that the NRO EC could be composed of the CEOs of the RIRs because the EC members were elected by the boards of the RIRs according to their own procedures. RB noted that, however, is up to each RIR to decide if theu elect the CEO or someone else.

HG suggested that if the AC states some comments on the NRO documents, it should avoid words that could suggest tension between the AC and the proposed NRO. He suggested that AL and MM coordinate after the teleconference to discuss comments from the meeting.

Comments should include the request for clarification of language used in the document, and ensuring that the valuable relationship with AC was not lost.

SJ noted that the RIRs had done a good job interacting through the NRO. HG noted that there was openness by the RIRs to include ideas and inputs from the AC and broader community.

KH commented that each part of the process has to be open and transparent, but there was no inclusion of these criteria for the NRO EC. She suggested the NRO EC should also abide by these criteria and produce publicly available meeting minutes. MM agreed.

HH noted there were other factors involved with the EC, such as the RIRs’ business needs. MM suggested that if the RIRs wanted to eliminate transparency, they could use the clause that says RIRs can delegate issues to the NRO; he suggested this would be a bad outcome.

KH noted that in section 9, the advisory appeals process, it appeared that the RIRs did not have to listen to the appeals panel. MM explained that the way he read the section, the advisory panel’s job was to give a second opinion on whether process has been followed properly. KH asked whether the EC could ignore the advisory panel’s decisions. MM and KR agreed this needed to be clarified in the agreement.

MM wondered why section 14 of the agreement was included since criteria for new RIRs already existed. He suggested that perhaps the only reason to include it was if ICANN would not exist in the future. RB noted that it was included to allow amendments to new RIR criteria in future.

MM noted that the section also stated that the criteria and process would be published by the NRO. However, MM assumed that it meant the NRO EC rather than the NRO.

HH suggested that as the NRO had a different structure to the ASO, it was possible for the NRO itself to publish the criteria.

HH noted that the biggest change related to the NRO was the fact that the RIRs were committed to working together in the NRO, something not achieved with the current ASO.

4.4 The proposed MoU between the NRO and ICANN

AA asked why the MOU would be signed by ICANN and NRO, but it contained many references to the ASO. MM explained that the ICANN by-laws refer to the ASO and AC. As the NRO would fulfill the roles of the AC and ASO as defined in the ICANN by-laws, the terms must also appear in the NRO MoU. AA suggested asking ICANN to change the by-laws, but it was explained that changing ICANN by-laws was a long process. However it was admitted that the use of NC, AC, NRO and ASO in the MoU was confusing.

4.5 Actions AC to take resulting from the previous items

HG suggested collating the issues discussed in the teleconference and posting them to the nro-comments mailing list as soon as possible.

There was discussion whether it was appropriate to send comments from the AC officially, or send comments separately as individuals. It was decided that AL and MM would collate comments from the teleconference and MM would write a draft response and post it to the ac-coord mailing list for comments by the end of Friday. AC members would then have until Sunday to respond. MM would then edit the response and post it to the nro-comments mailing list by Monday. It was decided that enough AC members were present in the teleconference and enough time had been given since the teleconference date was announced to reach a quorum on the issues to be included. These issues related to the clarity and content of the NRO proposal.

AL to send her notes from the minutes to MM by the end of the day.

[Meeting closed 23.25]

Last modified on 02/07/2020