Announcement | Internet Users Today Get An Additional Voice In How the Internet Develops | ICANN Certifies "At-Large Structures" in Africa, Europe
23 February 2004 - Furthering ICANN's goal to give the world's Internet users a stronger voice in how the Internet develops, four organizations in the African and European regions were certified as "At-Large Structures" today by the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN). They join six groups that were certified as At-Large Structures in December and that are helping individual Internet user communities throughout the world participate in ICANN. Certification recognizes that the following groups meet ICANN's criteria for involving individual Internet users at the local or issue level in ICANN activities and for promoting individuals' understanding of, and participation in, ICANN:
- Moroccan Internet Society (Region: Africa)
- Anais.AC (Region: Africa)
- Sudan Internet Society (Region: Africa)
- Internet Society - Finland (Region: Europe)
"We are especially pleased to welcome the first set of African At-Large Structures. Now there are ten such groups that have been certified to allow individual Internet users to engage in ICANN activities," said Vittorio Bertola, ICANN Interim At-Large Advisory Committee (ALAC) Chair. "We're also excited about reviewing six more At-Large Structure applications from Internet user organizations in Asia, Latin America and Europe, and we continue to invite other interested groups to follow their lead and support user involvement in ICANN."
ICANN President and CEO, Dr. Paul Twomey, also welcomed the announcement and said "The At- Large members are a most valuable and unique voice within the Internet community, and these additional organizations, particularly in Africa, are profoundly important. The growing involvement in ICANN of geographically and professionally diverse user groups will help ensure that ICANN's consensus-development efforts best reflect the interests of the global Internet community. The 'At-Large' participation is also a crucial contribution to ICANN's work on such matters as privacy of personal Whois data and the introduction of new domain names (to name a few)."
Any group (either existing organizations or newly formed for this purpose) that enables informed participation by individual Internet users in issues addressed by ICANN can apply for At-Large Structure certification. Interested groups complete and submit to the ALAC a short application form, and groups that meet the minimum requirements are certified. At-Large Structures have a recognized role in the development of ICANN policies. Their members receive information on, and are asked to share their views on, ICANN's work and Internet developments, and they have opportunities to participate in ICANN policy-making groups at the regional and international levels.
A variety of civil society organizations have expressed interest in participating in ICANN as At-Large Structures, including community networking groups, professional societies, consumer advocacy groups, and academic organizations. A complete list of At-Large Structure applicants and their status is posted at http://www.alac.icann.org/applications/).
ABOUT THE INTERIM AT-LARGE ADVISORY COMMITTEE
The ALAC is an Advisory Committee to ICANN's Board charged with providing advice on activities of ICANN that relate to the interests of individual Internet users, and helping to organize At-Large groups throughout the world for structured involvement and informed participation in ICANN of the individual Internet user community. The Board appointed a 10 member Interim ALAC in January 2003, and ICANN's Nominating Committee added additional members in June 2003: Africa -- Pierre Dandjinou, Clement Dzidonu, Sunday Folayan; Asia -- Hong Xue, Izumi Aizu, Toshifumi Matsumoto; Latin America -- Sebastian Ricciardi, Erick Iriarte, Tadao Takahashi; Europe -- Vittorio Bertola, Thomas Roessler, Roberto Gaetano; and North America -- Esther Dyson, Wendy Seltzer, and Ken Hamma. Biographies of these individuals, and information on the ALAC, can be found at alac.icann.org. ALAC members can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
ICANN is a non-profit organization responsible for coordinating the global Internet's systems of unique identifiers, including the systems of domain names and numeric addresses that are used to reach all computers on the Internet. ICANN's mission is to ensure the stable and secure operation of these unique identifier systems, which are vital to the Internet's operation. In addition, ICANN coordinates policy development related to these technical functions. For more information, see http://www.icann.org.
Denise Michel: email@example.com
Kieran Baker: firstname.lastname@example.org, or by telephone: +1 310 823 9358