ICANN Chairman comments on civility during the public forum

5 March 2009
By Frank Fowlie

PETER DENGATE THRUSH: I just wanted to object — there's been a couple of interject. There have been a couple of comments that have come over the course of that that come across as unprofessional and are directed to individuals in a personal capacity. We've all got reasonably thick skins. But I want to remind you that we have a code of conduct for behavior at ICANN meetings. And one of those is that we treat each other with civility and person and online. I just want to ask you, when you're making your comments, if you could refrain from any personal comments directed to individuals.

The community is reminded of the Statement on Respectful Online Communication found at: http://www.icann.org/ombudsman/respectful-communication.pdf

The ICANN Accountability and Transparency Framework states:

ICANN EXPECTED STANDARDS OF BEHAVIORThose who take part in ICANN multi-stakeholder process including Board, staff and all those involved in Supporting Organization and Advisory Committee councils undertake to: Actin accordance with ICANN’s Bylaws. In particular, participants undertake to act within the mission of ICANN and in the spirit of the values contained in the Bylaws. 

Adhere to the conflict of interest policy laid out in the Bylaws.

Treat all members of the ICANN community equally, irrespective of nationality, gender, racial or ethnic origin, religion or beliefs, disability, age, or sexual orientation; members of the ICANN community should treat each other with civility both face to face and online.

Act in a reasonable and informed manner when participating in policy development and decision-making processes. This includes regularly attending all scheduled meetings and exercising independent judgment based solely on what is in the overall best interest of Internet users and the stability and security of the Internet’s system of unique identifiers, irrespective of personal interests and the interests of the entity to which an individual might owe their appointment.

Listen  to the views of all stakeholders when considering policy issues. ICANN is a unique multi-stakeholder environment. Those who take part in the ICANN process must acknowledge the importance of all stakeholders and seek to understand their points of view.

Work  to build consensus with other stakeholders in order to find solutions to the issues that fall within the areas of ICANN’s responsibility. The ICANN model is based on a bottom-up, consensus driven approach to policy development. Those who take part in the ICANN process must take responsibility for ensuring the success of the model by trying to build consensus with other participants.

Act  in accordance with ICANN policies.

Protect the organization’s assets and ensure their efficient and effective use. •

Act fairly and in good faith with other participants in the ICANN process.


Frank Fowlie