The transition was not about giving away the internet, as one of the presidential candidates had described it, said Steve DelBianco, executive director of NetChoice Coalition. Instead, it was “not sustainable for the US to hold that power forever in the post-Snowden world.”
DelBianco at the same time underlined that the role of governments had been diminished by the transition to an oversight by an “empowered community.” Governments have “lost influence” through obligations on consensus and a potential challenge of the ICANN Governmental Advisory Committee (GAC) advice implementation through a community process.
Steve DelBianco, executive director fo NetChoice and an ICANN official, sounded confident. “We can do it,” he said. “We have finished the hard work of a report that has been cleared by all of the multistakeholder members. We now have to match bylaws to that report. We’ve got high-paid lawyers, both for ICANN and for the [stakeholder] community. And they need to come together roughly a week from now with a draft that we can review. When that’s done, the only other step is to implement the set-up of certain corporations and creating panels and we can do that in time to get this transition completed.”
DelBianco pointed out that NTIA chief Larry Strickling has said that if the new plan is not implemented by mid-August and the bylaws aren’t adopted “NTIA would extend the contract. We do have a safety valve.”
“Some in Congress will ask whether we’ve protected Icann from governmental control, and we have,” said Steve DelBianco, head of US ecommerce trade association NetChoice and a member of one of the Icann working groups. “Just ask the governments who complained that we have reduced their role as a result of our proposal.”
To watch BBC News or send online messages to European friends, data must flow across the Atlantic. The EU-U.S. Safe Harbor Agreement makes these data transfers possible – but this might soon change.
We could soon see “cyber-fences” between the U.S. and EU if negotiators from both sides fail to adopt a new agreement by the end of the month.
PANEL: Alissa Cooper, Distinguished Engineer, Cisco; Steve DelBianco, Executive Director, NetChoice; David Redl, Counsel, U.S House Committee on Energy and Commerce; Greg Shatan, Partner, Abelman Frayne & Schwab; Chris Wilson, Vice President, Government Affairs, 21st Century Fox. MODERATOR: Laura DeNardis American University
Question from Steve DelBianco with NetChoice and the ICANN Business Constituency: Fadi, even if we were on a boat in the middle of the ocean, I realize that it isolates the employees from those regimes; but we do create policies and enforce contracts that affect registrants and users all over the world, and therefore those activities are subject to the laws of the countries where those registrants and users live. So the speaker who asked the question might have thought that putting employees into country means that ICANN has to ensure that the laws of that country are respected, but that’s the case anyway, whether the employees are there or not. There are special concerns about employees, but they don’t suddenly increase the need to pay attention to laws. And, Fadi, your answer to Peter about ICANN’s evolution used the word “trust” many, many times and I’m not even sure how that would translate into all the languages we work with. But in the accountability transition track, I don’t really know that trust was at the nub of coming up with the community accountability mechanisms. It’s more about the community if it disagrees with the management and Board’s interpretation of some very fluid concepts like fiduciary duty, global public interest. These are concepts that are difficult to nail down. And there may be instances where the community as a consensus comes together and says” respectfully, Board, we don’t agree with how you’ve interpreted your fiduciary duty on this. “And that is why the community powers are designed. And that disagreement has nothing to do with trust, right? It has to do with a different perspective. When you’re on the board, when the people move from this side of the table to the Board they are now have more of a duty to the corporation than they did before and it’s a broad duty to the public interest of the community. So it’s not about trust as much as it is about disagreement of interpretation and I think that helps to take the temperature down because we didn’t really have a trust problem as much as a disagreement issue.
Governments often use small players as pawns in their global games of chess. Two weeks ago the European Court of Justice invalidated the EU-US Safe Harbor (“Safe Harbor”) framework, turning Internet businesses into expendable pawns in a government game. But for the past fifteen years, Safe Harbor allowed data flows across the Atlantic — fostering innovation and incredible economic development.
The Safe Harbor agreement mirrors the original goal of the Internet, ubiquitous information sharing regardless of borders. Now, with quadrillions of bytes of data transferred daily between our nations, accounting for trillions of dollars in trade, the Internet is essential for the global economy.
In an effort to reach a compromise, a key working group member, Steve DelBianco, proposed a week ago that the “member model,” which would give the internet community a legal right to enforce changes, be put off. Instead a “designator” model be introduced that would give the internet community many of the powers it wanted (such as firing board members and vetoing the budget).
We spoke to key member Steve DelBianco about where he felt the process could go from here. He told us: “The selection of the member model was only ever the means to get some kind of enforceability over the new community powers; there is some flexibility over the model itself.”
Given the board’s resistance to the member model, he feels that a “somewhat less enforceable” approach could work, so long as it contained safeguards that would enable the community to impose the member model later if ICANN failed to stand by its statements.
But, we asked him, why would the internet community expect anything different from the ICANN Board in future if it is not prepared to accept the member model now with the prize of the IANA contract on the line?
He outlined the path that he sees: “If in future the community decides it needs the member model and the board resists, then the community can use its powers to spill the board. And then the community can make it a pre-condition for any new board members that they approve the membership model.”
Reproduced with permission from Electronic Commerce & Law Report, 20 ECLR (Sept. 30, 2015). Copyright 2015 by The Bureau of National Affairs, Inc. (800-372-1033) <http://www.bna.com>
Para grupos de la industria como la Asociación de Consumidores de Artículos Electrónicos, NetChoice, o la Coalición de Privacidad y Seguridad Estatal, la oposición a las leyes de derecho a la reparación está justificada: “Imagínese el peligro si alguien que carece de formación adecuada repara estos dispositivos”, argumenta Carl Szabo, asesor de políticas en NetChoice.