Update 2 – NomCom, ITU-D, ICANN Ombudsman & CIGI Survey Results
Sudowski Appointed ICANN Nominating Committee Chair.
Jay Sudowski was appointed Chair of the ICANN Nominating Committee on 08 September 2019. Sudowski is Co-founder and CEO of Handy Networks LLC, a data centre located in Denver Colorado. He is also a member of the i2 Coalition, a US based Internet Infrastructure lobbying group. Sudowski is part of the ICANN Business Constituency. He will remain chair until 2020, when Chair Elect Ole Jacobsen will take over the role.
The ICANN Nominating Committee is responsible for recruiting 8 out of 16 of ICANN's Board members. It functions independently of the ICANN Board of Directors.
ICANN Joins ITU-D as Sector Member
ICANN's application to join the ITU-D was approved in June 2019. The International Telecommunications Union's Telecommunications Development Sector is responsible for creating policies, regulation and providing training programs and financial strategies in developing countries. ICANN sought the role following dissolution of the ITU's Telecommunications Liaison Group. The role will enable ICANN to more closely track and influence ITU policy-making.
Muscovitch Calls for Apology from ICANN Ombudsman Waye
Zak Muscovitch, General Counsel of the Internet Commerce Association has called on ICANN Ombudsman Herb Waye to apologize for calling over 3,200 comments opposing ICANN's renewal of the .ORG registry agreement “akin to spam”.
In the 12 September 2019 letter posted to ICANN Correspondence, Muscovitch states “Your disparagement of public comments from concerned stakeholders, which were duly submitted through the ICANN comment portal, is deeply concerning, particularly for an Ombudsman.” He goes on to call for an apology and retraction of Waye's statements.
The flare-up occurred as part of a Request for Reconsideration filed on 21 September 2018 by Namecheap, a domain name registrar. Namecheap opposes ICANN's decision to renew the .info and .org contracts without price caps. On 07 September 2019 the Ombudsman's evaluation of this request was rejected, with Waye stating that the request “doesn't not merit a recommendation by me to the BAMC or the Board to take the action Requestor requests, or to take any action at all.”
Waye rejects Electronic Frontier Foundation Opposition to .INFO and .ORG Contract Renewal
On 7 September 2019 ICANN Ombudsman Herb Waye rejected the Electronic Frontier Foundation's request to reconsider ICANN's approval of the .ORG and .INFO contracts.
Waye relied on the distinction between policy and corporate governance to reject the request. His evaluation focussed on the ICANN Board's right to delegate matters relating to legacy renewal of contracts to the ICANN CEO and Staff.
In other words once a contract has been awarded changes to that contract become the purview of ICANN staff to re-negotiate and renew, absent other direction from the ICANN Board of Directors. This means contract renewals are not a policy matter, and are therefore not open to reconsideration.
75% of Internet users say Social Media Companies Fuel Distrust
A Centre for Internet Governance Innovation (CIGI) survey released on 11 June 2019 found that 75% of 25,000 Internet users surveyed blamed social media companies like Twitter, Facebook and Google for sowing distrust. 52% felt that governments were not doing enough to protect their personal information.