The European Commission’s High Level Group on Internet Governance (HLIG) met with the CENTR community on 8th October 2015 to discuss ICANN Accountability improvements.
Following the meeting the parties issued the following communique:
Joint statement from CENTR and the European Commission’s HLIG on the IANA Stewardship Transition and ICANN Accountability improvement processes
This statement was agreed upon following a joint meeting between the European Commission’s High Level Group on Internet Governance (HLIG) and the Council of European National Top Level Domain Registries (CENTR) on the Internet Assigned Numbers Authority (IANA) stewardship transition and Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) accountability improvement processes, which was held in Brussels on 8 October 2015.
European Domain Name System (DNS) stakeholders, including governments and country code top-level domain (ccTLD) registries, have called for the IANA stewardship to be transitioned to the multistakeholder community for a long time. Within the ground rules set by the United States’ National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA), stakeholders from across the world have engaged to make sure that the IANA transition and the absence of NTIA oversight goes hand-in-hand with improved accountability and transparency.
At a time when the importance of the internet is steadily increasing – at political, social and economic levels – and in the advent of WSIS+10, it is crucial that the IANA Stewardship Transition process also leads to an improved accountability towards the global internet community.
We wish to reiterate our support to the Cross-Community Working Group on the IANA Stewardship Transition (CWG) and to the work of the IANA Stewardship Transition Coordination Group (ICG).
The requirements set forth by the proposals from the CWG and ICG groups can only be met if implemented by credible, enforceable powers in the ultimate interest of all stakeholder groups. This has already been underlined by the unanimous but conditional approval of the CWG proposal by all of ICANN’s Supporting Organizations (SOs) and Advisory Committees (ACs) at the Buenos Aires ICANN Meeting in June 2015.
The accountability proposal has gone through the multistakeholder process, it has been legally assessed and went through two public consultations. The process as outlined by the NTIA was followed and all stakeholders should respect the outcome. The outcome will only have the necessary legitimacy if the bottom-up, consensus-driven process continues to be fully respected.
We strongly encourage all participants in the next face-to-face meeting of the Cross-Community Working Group on Accountability (CCWG) to review the second draft proposal and present it to all stakeholder groups at the ICANN 54 meeting. We are looking forward to seeing a consensus-based draft and updated timeline by the end of the ICANN Dublin meeting. We will work within the process to make sure this happens.