Minutes | Board Governance Committee (BGC) Meeting 14 May 2014

BGC Attendees: Cherine Chalaby, Chris Disspain, Olga Madruga-Forti, Ram Mohan, Mike Silber, and Bruce Tonkin – Chair

BGC Member Apologies: Ray Plzak

Other Board Member Attendees: Steve Crocker

Executive and Staff Attendees:  Megan Bishop (Board Support Coordinator), John Jeffrey (General Counsel and Secretary), Elizabeth Le (Senior Counsel), Karine Perset (Sr. Director of Board Support) and Amy Stathos (Deputy General Counsel)

The following is a summary of discussion, actions taken, and actions identified:

  1. Minutes – The BGC approved the minutes from the meeting on 29 April 2014.
  2. ATRT2 Recommendation 10 – The BGC discussed ATRT2 Recommendation 10 regarding the enhancement of GNSO PDP and appropriate implementation steps.
  3. Reconsideration Requests 14-13, 14-14, 14-15, 14-16, 14-17, 14-18, 14-19, 14-20, 14-21, 14-22, 14-24, 14-25, and 14-26 (the "Requests") – Ram Mohan abstained from participation of this matter noting conflicts. Staff briefed the BGC regarding thirteen Requests filed by representatives of the European Commission, the United Kingdom Government, the French Government, the Spanish Government, various GI Organizations,1 the Italian Government, the Portuguese Government, the Luxembourg Government, and the Swiss Government seeking reconsideration of one or more of the NGPC Resolutions 2014.03.22.NG01, 2014.04.04.NG01, 2014.04.04.NG02, 2014.04.04.NG03, and 2014.04.04.NG04 (collectively the "Resolutions"), which relate to the applications for .WINE and .VIN. The Requesters claimed that: (i) the Resolutions were based on information transmitted in violation of internal Governmental Advisory Committee ("GAC") Operating Principles; (ii) the Board failed to consider material information in passing the Resolutions; (iii) the Board relied on false or misleading information in passing the Resolutions; and (iv) the Board breached ICANN's Bylaws with respect to the commission and consideration of external expert legal advice. The BGC noted that because the Requests involve the same general Board action or inaction and raise sufficiently similar issues, they will be addressed together in the same proceeding. After discussion and consideration of the Requests, the BGC concluded that there is no evidence that the Board's actions in adopting the Resolutions support reconsideration. Specifically, the BGC determined that: (i) the Board properly considered GAC advice provided to the Board in accordance with the procedures set forth in ICANN's Bylaws and the gTLD Applicant Guidebook; (ii) the Board did not fail to consider any material information in passing the Resolutions; (iii) the Board did not rely on false or misleading information in passing the Resolutions; and (iv) the Board did not breach ICANN's Bylaws with respect to the commission and consideration of external legal advice. The BGC further noted that although the Requesters are concerned that the delegation of .WINE and .VIN without the safeguards preferred by the Requesters will adversely impact the Requesters, at present this remains uncertain and is therefore insufficient to establish the necessary Bylaws-mandated criteria to support the Reconsideration Requests. The BGC also noted that as part of its commitment to transparency, the Board should continue to improve and enhance the methods by which meeting agendas are communicated to the community in advance of the meeting, including providing more details in the agendas about the topics to be considered by the Board (or NGPC) at any given meeting. The BGC approved a motion recommending that the NGPC deny the Reconsideration Requests.

    • Action: Staff to prepare a proposed resolution for consideration by the NGPC.

Published on 27 May 2014

1 The National Appellation of Origin Wines and Brandy Producers ("CNAOC"), the Comité Interprofessionnel du Vin de Champagne ("CIVC"), the European Federation of Origin Wines ("EFOW"), the Bureau National Interprofessionnel du Cognac ("BNIC"), and the Conseil Interprofessionnel du Vin de Bordeaux ("CIVB") shall be collectively referred to herein as the "GI Organizations."