Public Comment is a vital part of our multistakeholder model. It provides a mechanism for stakeholders to have their opinions and recommendations formally and publicly documented. It is an opportunity for the ICANN community to effect change and improve policies and operations.
We include *3* attachments which constitute our entire submission:
1. LEAP-comments-IGO-ePDP-2023-FINAL-20230130.pdf: Our January 30, 2023 comments on the final report focusing on issues since the initial report of the new IGO working group, but which includes by reference the other 2 PDFs. [56 pages]
2. LEAP-comments-IGOPDP-final-report-20190820.pdf: Our, August 20, 2019 comment submission regarding the final report of the first IGO working group. [32 pages]
3. LEAP-comments-IGO-ePDP-2021-final-20211023: Our October 23, 2021 comment submission regarding the initial report of the new IGO working group. [54 pages]
[While we cannot possibly summarize 142 pages of input in 2000 characters, let us repeat the "Final Thoughts" of our January 30, 2023 PDF above.]
[those pressed for time might want to jump directly to section 10 of the January 30, 2023 PDF, and then circle back to all the rest later]
In conclusion, the Board should reject the final report in its entirety. It's the product of a demonstrably captured group. The final report itself is internally inconsistent. As discussed in section 10 above, the working group has no rational or credible basis for "believing" that they're preserving registrant rights on page 16 of the final report, when on page 20 they admit that they are prejudicing those same rights. It shocks the conscience that they could even put forth such a fatally flawed final report that contradicts itself. It's a fundamentally dishonest document, that cannot be repaired or tweaked. It must be discarded. Those who advanced this final report should be held accountable for wasting the time and resources of the organization, and for disrespecting the public's input.
The working group did not meaningfully review the public comments to the initial report. They can't "show their work" in how they arrived at their recommendations in light of the feedback to their initial report, as they simply didn't do the work.
The working group ignored the Board's own past guidance to not provide IGOs with rights greater than that which exists under international law. Instead, the recommendations directly harm domain name registrants, adopting a "win-lose" approach rather than a "win-win" approach.
As a way forward, we strongly urge consideration and adoption of a "Notice of Objection" system, as it can provide strong benefits to IGOs, while simultaneously preserving the full legal rights of domain name registrants. It's a true win-win solution, and we would be willing to assist ICANN and the community to design a solution that all stakeholders can support.