Board Governance Committee (BGC) Meeting Minutes | 18 June 2013

BGC Attendees: Cherine Chalaby, Chris Disspain, Bertrand de La Chapelle, Ray Plzak, Mike Silber, and Bruce Tonkin – Chair

Other Board Member Attendees: Steve Crocker

Staff Attendees: John Jeffrey – General Counsel and Secretary; Megan Bishop, Michelle Bright, Samantha Eisner, Elizabeth Le and Amy Stathos


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

  1. Minutes: The BCG approved the minutes of the last meeting.

  2. Conflicts of Interest Disclosure Statement Review: The BGC members reviewed the Statement of Interest and New gTLD Conflicts of Interest Disclosure Statement submitted by the new Liaison to the Board, appointed by the Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF) – Jonne Soininen.

  3. New gTLD Program Reconsideration Subcommittee of the BGC: The BGC discussed whether a subcommittee should be created to deal with the New gTLD Program-related reconsideration requests and if so, the process for creating such subcommittee, including a mechanism by which a Board member who is not on the subcommittee may provide expert advice regarding the reconsideration request. With respect to the threshold question of whether a subcommittee should be established, the BGC discussed the existence of actual, potential and perceived conflicts of interest in the reconsideration review process. The BGC decided to not form a subcommittee at this point, and to address conflicts with respect to each reconsideration request on a case-by-case basis. Accordingly, the BGC committed to holding regular monthly meetings, as needed, to address pending reconsideration requests, and that the BGC will continue to deal with any declared conflicts issues at the outset of each meeting.

  4. Reconsideration Request 13-3: The Chair noted that he was abstaining from consideration of this matter due to a potential conflict of interest as it relates to the implementation of the Trademark Clearinghouse. The BGC received a status update on issues surrounding the BGC Recommendation on Reconsideration Request 13-3 ("Request 13-3" or "the Request"). The BGC previously addressed Request 13-3 at the 16 May 2013 meeting and issued a recommendation to the New gTLD Program Committee ("NGPC"). Thereafter, a discussion took place among GNSO Council members regarding some concerns over, not the result, but some of the language used in the BGC's recommendation. The GNSO Council formally submitted a request to the BGC that it review and reconsider the wording of the recommendation. The BGC discussed the concerns raised by some GNSO Council members, and whether it should revise the wording of its recommendation to address said concerns and agreed to consider a revised recommendation. The BGC scheduled a meeting for 25 June 2013. The BGC also discussed whether it needs to look at the reconsideration process and input into various stages of that process.

    • Actions:

      • Staff to circulate clean version of a revised proposed recommendation reflecting the revisions discussed by the BGC.

      • The BGC to discuss reconsideration process at a later date.