Submitted by ARIN, RIPE NCC, and APNIC
Proposal for an MoU-based Address Supporting Organization within the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers
July 23, 1999
Definition of the ASO.
Creation through a Memorandum of Understanding.
The Address Supporting Organization (ASO) will be a consensus- based advisory body within the ICANN framework.
The ASO will establish a “Address Council” and host an annual open meeting (known as the “General Assembly” (described below)).
Arrangements regarding the ASO are to be reflected in a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) among ICANN and the group of ICANN approved regional IP address registries (RIR). RIRs are approved by ICANN and it is assumed that ICANN will insist that they must satisfy a set of objective criteria before ICANN will approve them. (see Appendix A) After ICANN has accepted a proposal for an ICANN ASO, including the RIR criteria, a meeting, open to all ICANN approved RIRs will be held to develop the MOU.
Additional RIRs may join in signing the MOU after they have been approved by ICANN.
The Address Council.
- Annually the RIR will issue a public call for nominees to the Address Council at least 90 days before the RIR’s policy meeting. Any individual can submit a nomination to the RIR.
- The due date for this call shall be 30 days before the meeting.
- The nominees must be individuals.
- A list of all nominees who agree to run for the Address Council must be posted on the RIR’s web page at least 15 days before the meeting along with a statement from each nominee who wishes to make one.
- Selection of the RIR’s members of the Address Council will be made via an open and transparent procedure. The individuals selected for the Address Council must not be staff members of the RIR.
Powers/Duties of the Address Council.
- Appointment of ICANN Directors.
- Qualifications of ICANN Directors.
- No more than 1 ASO-appointed Director may come from the same geographic region.
- No ASO-appointed Director may serve simultaneously on the Address Council.
- Role of ICANN Directors.
- Advisory Role.
The Address Council is responsible for the selection of three  Directors to the ICANN Board (By-laws, Art. V, Sec. 4(iii)). The initial directors would have terms of 1, 2 and 3 years (By-laws, Art. V, Sec. 9(d) Ninety days prior to the General Assembly meeting ICANN and the Address Council will conduct an open call for nominations for any potentially open ASO seats on the ICANN board. The list of nominees generated by this call will be posted on the ICANN/ASO web site and retained until the next General Assembly meeting and will be included in the list of individuals that the Address Council will consider to fill any openings which arise in the ASO seats on the ICANN board. In addition, each RIR signatory to the MOU is entitled to nominate candidates by procedures of its own choosing. ICANN will notify the Address Council when there are any open positions in the ASO seats on the ICANN board. The Address Council will then select the ASO appointees to the ICANN board from among the list of nominees generated by the open call and the nominees put forth by the RIR signatories by a means of its own choosing.
The Directors appointed by the Address Council will not represent the ASO on the Board, but will function as full Directors of ICANN. (By-laws, Art. V, Sec. 8)
The Address Council will advise the Board of ICANN on matters referred to the Address Council by the ICANN Board. As per the ICANN By-laws, only matters relating to the specific responsibilities of the ASO (see below) will be so referred. This advice will be developed as detailed below for other policies.
Address Policy Development.
- Definition of global policies for the distribution and registration of Internet address space (currently IPv4 and IPv6);
- Definition of global policies for the distribution and registration of identifiers used in Internet inter-domain routing (currently BGP autonomous system numbers); and
- Definition of global policies concerning the part of the DNS name space which is derived from the Internet address space and the inter-domain routing identifiers (currently in-addr.arpa and ip6.int).
Each RIR signatory of the MOU will select three  individuals to the Address Council using the following process:
The term of Address Council members will be 3 years. Removal will be pursuant to procedures established through the MOU. (Initial terms will be 1, 2 and 3 years to provide initial conditions for staggered terms.)
The ICANN bylaws assign to the ASO the responsibility for the development of global policies relating to the following areas:
The ASO advises ICANN on the operation of the DNS root name servers with regard to the subset of the DNS name space mentioned above.
Specifically this responsibility is limited to the above and does not extend to the business practices or local policies of the RIRs except as needed to ensure that the RIRs meet the approved criteria for ICANN approved RIRs. The RIRs are responsible to their own members and in most cases this must be their prime responsibility.
Normally, proposals for global policies within the area of the ASO’s responsibility will be developed within the RIRs and forwarded to the Address Council for their consideration. In special circumstances the ICANN board can forward a request to develop a new global policy or to review an existing global policy within the area of the ASO’s responsibility to the Address Council.
In addition the Address Council may accept, for consideration, proposals for changes to global IP address policy from any interested individual.
In all cases when the Address Council reviews proposals for new global policies or proposed modification to existing policies in this area it will first solicit the opinions of all of the RIR signatories of the MOU and of the public. The Address Council will weigh the results of these solicitations in its deliberations to determine if it will approve the proposal. At least two thirds of the members of the Address Council must support a proposal for the proposal to be accepted and forwarded to the ICANN board for its consideration.
In any case where the ICANN board has requested that the Address Council develop a new policy within the area of the ASO’s responsibility, the Address Council will forward that request to the RIR signatories of the MOU. The RIRs will then be given a reasonable time to propose policies to address the request from ICANN. Any resulting policy will be evaluated as described above. If a RIR decides, after reviewing the request, that the request is unreasonable, it can report that opinion to the Address Council. If the Address Council, after reviewing the responses, decides that the request is unreasonable or inadvisable, it can report that opinion to the ICANN board along with the reasons that the Address Council reached that conclusion.
Open Meeting. (General Assembly)
Hosting an open meeting.
Selection of Address Council Members.
The Address Council will periodically host an open meeting (“General Assembly”) for promoting discussion and receiving input regarding the work of the ASO. A General Assembly meeting will be held at least once per year, and will permit open participation by all interested individuals.
This annual open meeting will be held in conjunction with a major meeting of one of the RIRs that have signed the MOU, with an effort to hold no two  consecutive meetings in the same geographic region.
Ninety days prior to each annual open meeting, ICANN and the Address Council shall make an open call for nominations to any potential vacancies in the Address Council. The results of this call will be forwarded to each RIR signatory to the MOU for their information. Each RIR signatory to the ASO MOU will be entitled to select three  members of the Address Council using the process described in Section 2a.
Open Proceedings and Documents.
Communications between ICANN and the ASO.
All communications between ICANN and the ASO will be made public on the ASO web site.
All discussions regarding ASO policy formation will be conducted on or reported on a publicly-archived mailing list accessible through the ASO web site. The schedule for the ASO meetings will be posted 90 days in advance of the meeting date. The agenda for the Address Council and annual open meetings will be posted on the ASO web site at least 30 days before the meetings. The minutes from all ASO meetings will be publicly posted on the ASO web site within 30 days of the meeting. In the unlikely event that the policy formation discussions involve confidential commercial data that was presented in an address allocation process the above disclosures must be done in a way to protect the confidentially of that data.
Review of MOU.
- That the proposed RIR has demonstrated the broad support of the Internet service providers (ISPs) in its proposed region of coverage.
- That the region of coverage meets the scale to be defined by ICANN considering the need to avoid global address space fragmentation.
- That the proposed RIR’s membership includes a significant percentage of the ISPs within the RIR’s region of coverage which would get their address assignments from the proposed RIR.
- That the proposed RIR has clearly defined procedures open to all interested parties for the development of its own IP address assignment policies and for the IP address assignment policies that the RIR might recommend to the Address Council for consideration as global policies.
- That these policies include holding at least one annual policy development meeting open to all interested parties.
- That the proposed RIR has clearly defined procedures open to all interested parties regarding ensuring fair representation of constituents within the region of coverage in the policy development process.
- That the proposed RIR has demonstrable capability to effectively implement the RIR global policies referred to in section 2d of this proposal for the entire RIR’s proposed region of coverage.
The MOU signatories will periodically review the results and consequences of their cooperation under the MOU. When appropriate, the signatories will consider the need for improvements in the MOU and make suitable proposals for modifying and updating the arrangements and scope of the MOU
ICANN will officially recognize the ASO described in this memo as the ASO under the ICANN By-laws Art. 6, Sec. 3
Appendix A – requirements for consideration as a ICANN-approved RIR
ICANN will develop requirements and policies for the approval of RIRs. This proposal assumes that the requirements will include at least: