Being responsive to governments’ needs?

Bret Fausett quotes David McGuire, and observes that, since the GAC is mostly operating in closed shop mode, it’s hard to assess the GAC’s effectivity. I wonder, though, if the criticism out there is really about the GAC’s effectivity, or about IC…

Bret Fausett quotes David McGuire, and observes that, since the GAC is mostly operating in closed shop mode, it’s hard to assess the GAC’s effectivity.I wonder, though, if the criticism out there is really about the GAC’s effectivity, or about ICANN’s fundamental design; if the criticism is about ICANN’s willingness, or if it is about ICANN’s abilities and about its usefulness as a tool for governments to regulate on the Internet.Christopher Wilkinson’s recent remarks hint towards the second interpretation, as does the ongoing work of looking at the WIPO2 recommendations (General Counsel’s briefing here), and their possible implementation: The GAC had recommended that ICANN implement WIPO’s recommendations to extend the UDRP to give special protection to the names and acronyms of intergovernmental organizations, and country names; it was also suggested that review of such UDRP decisions in national courts be replaced by de novo arbitration. Opposition against making these changes is essentially universal throughout the non-GAC part of the ICANN community. What the GAC is asking for, and what ICANN supposedly would have to do in order to be responsive to governments’ needs, is to somehow enact a substantial change to an established consensus policy against the community’s consensus, and without any review of the question whether the recommendations should be implemented at all.It’s not clear to me how this should be possible; indeed, if ICANN was able to implement this advice in the way the GAC suggests, that would be deeply troubling by itself.

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