[arin-announce] NRO Statement on IANA Stewardship Transition and ICANN Accountability

ARIN info at arin.net
Wed Oct 14 13:46:21 EDT 2015

The following messages is sent on behalf of the Number Resource 


The NRO takes this opportunity to comment on the current discussions of
ICANN accountability, prior to the series of meetings coming up in
Dublin, Ireland, during October 2015.

The NRO has worked to ensure that to the extent possible, relationships
between ICANN, RIRs and the global numbering communities are established
in formal relationships that provide necessary definition and separation
of responsibilities.

The number community proposal for IANA oversight transition relies on
these existing relationships, and builds on them to ensure that
responsibilities, commitments and accountabilities are clear and robust
in the post-transition environment.

Regarding our expectations of ICANN accountability: in our relationships
with ICANN, we have and will continue to rely upon binding agreements as
the primarily mechanism for ICANN accountability to the numbers community.

Regarding organizational models for ICANN accountability, the NRO notes
that two legal memos [1][2] reached the conclusion that ICANN currently
uses a “Designator” model for appointment of Directors, and that the
designators currently have the power to remove the Directors that they
appoint.  We also note that both legal memos pointed out gaps in the
current ICANN bylaws, and one of them was associated with concrete
suggestions for bylaw changes to address the identified gaps [3].

The NRO believes that a clarification and formalisation of ICANN’s
existing designator structure via the “Empowered SO/AC Designator” model
(as referenced in the CCWG-Accountability “2nd Draft Proposal on Work
Stream 1 Recommendations” [4]) is the most straightforward approach to
provide ICANN structural accountability to the community.  We believe
that the ability for designator organisations (SOs, ACs, and the NomCom)
to remove and replace their designated Directors would provide a
sufficient mechanism for enforcement of the desired community powers.

However, we are able to support any accountability reform proposal which
preserves and ensures ICANN’s ability to perform in accordance with our
agreements, providing also that they are consistent with the successful
IANA stewardship transition in the time available.

The NRO is fully committed to the completion of the current IANA
stewardship transition as a desirable and necessary evolution of the
current ICANN and IANA models.  Indeed, this is an overdue development
that we have explicitly supported in several prior public statements.

We therefore urge the global multistakeholder community to continue the
work to converge on a mutually acceptable accountability reform
proposal, which needs to achieve only the following:

* Satisfying immediate concerns over ICANN accountability
* Allowing the IANA transition to take place within the expected timeframe
* Ensuring that ICANN evolution can and will continue in future.

Finally we recognize the ongoing efforts by the CCWG and the ICANN Board
to arrive to a successful conclusion of the work which is necessary for
the IANA transition to occur. It is important that all of these efforts
be fully respectful of the work of the community and that any
discrepancies be dealt with in a true and amicable multistakeholder fashion.

Alan Barrett

John Curran
President and CEO

Paul Wilson
Director General

Oscar Robles

Axel Pawlik
Managing Director


[1] “Proposed Articles and Bylaw Amendments for ICANN”, Caplin &
Drysdale, 31 Mar 2015. A  memo discussing the existing designator model
within ICANN, and discussing proposed amendments to the ICANN bylaws.
Associated with proposed bylaw amendments [3].  Forwarded to the CCWG on
7 April 2015.

[2] “Current Corporate Status of ICANN under California Law”,
Sidley Austin and Adler & Colvin, 11 Oct 2015.  A memo concluding that
ICANN currently functions under a designator model under California law,
and identifying related gaps in the current ICANN bylaws.  Forwarded to
the CCWG on 12 Oct 2015.

[3] “Proposed Amendments to the Articles of Incorporation and Bylaws of
Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers re Designators”,
Caplin & Drysdale, 31 Mar 2015.  Associated with memo [1]. Forwarded to
the CCWG on 7 April 2015.

[4] “CCWG-Accountability 2nd Draft Proposal on Work Stream 1
Recommendations”, 3 August 2015,

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