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Minutes | Regular Meeting of the ICANN Board

A Regular Meeting of the ICANN Board of Directors was held in person on 3 February 2017 in Santa Monica, California at 9:45 local time.

Steve Crocker, Chair, promptly called the meeting to order.

In addition to the Chair, the following Directors participated in all or part of the meeting: Rinalia Abdul Rahim, Maarten Botterman, Becky Burr, Cherine Chalaby (Vice Chair), Ron da Silva, Chris Disspain, Asha Hemrajani, Rafael Lito Ibarra, Khaled Koubaa, Markus Kummer, Akinori Maemura, Göran Marby (President and CEO), George Sadowsky, Mike Silber, and Lousewies van der Laan.

The following Board Liaisons participated in all or part of the meeting: Ram Mohan (SSAC Liaison), Kaveh Ranjbar (RSSAC Liaison), Thomas Schneider (GAC Liaison), and Jonne Soininen (IETF Liaison).

Secretary: John Jeffrey (General Counsel and Secretary).

The following ICANN Executives and Staff participated in all or part of the meeting: Akram Atallah (President, Global Domains Division), Susana Bennett (Chief Operations Officer), Duncan Burns (SVP, Global Communications), Michelle Bright (Board Operations Content Manager), Xavier Calvez (Chief Financial Officer), Sally Costerton (Sr. Advisor to the President – Global Stakeholder Engagement), Samantha Eisner (Deputy General Counsel), Elise Gerich (President, PTI), John Jeffrey (General Counsel and Secretary), Tarek Kamel (Sr. Advisor To The President - Gov. Engagement), Melissa King (VP, Board Operations), Vinciane Koenigsfeld (Board Operations Content Manager), Elizabeth Le (Senior Counsel), Cyrus Namazi (Vice President, Domain Name Services & Industry Engagement, Global Domains Division), David Olive (Vice President, Policy Development), Wendy Profit (Board Operations Specialist), Ashwin Rangan (Chief Innovation and Information Officer), Amy Stathos (Deputy General Counsel), Theresa Swinehart (Sr. Advisor to the President on Strategy), and Christine Willett (VP of gTLD Operations).

  1. Consent Agenda:
    1. Approval of Board Meeting Minutes
    2. Delegation of the Internationalized Domain Name ccTLD .پاکستان representing Pakistan in Arabic script
    3. Security and Stability Advisory Committee Appointment
    4. Amendment to .XXX Registry Agreement
    5. Independent Review of the Generic Names Supporting Organization (GNSO) Plan of Recommendations
    6. Appointment of Board Designees for New Specific Reviews: Registration Directory Service (RDS) Review Team
    7. Appointment of Board Designees for New Specific Reviews: Second Security, Stability, and Resiliency of the Domain Name System
    8. GNSO Council Request: Compliance with Inter-Registrar Transfer Policy Part C (IRTP-C)
    9. GAC Advice: Hyderabad Communiqué (November 2016)
    10. Publication of Board Committees Activity Reports
    11. Appointment of Independent Auditors
  2. Main Agenda:
    1. Consideration of Board Governance Committee's Advice to form a Board Accountability Mechanisms Committee
  1. Consent Agenda:

    The Chair, Steve Crocker, provided a brief overview of the items on the Consent Agenda. The Chair then called for a vote, and the Board took the following action:

    Resolved, the following resolutions in this Consent Agenda are approved:

    1. Approval of Board Meeting Minutes

      Resolved (2017.02.03.01), the Board approves the minutes of the 13 December 2016 Meetings of the ICANN Board.

    2. Delegation of the Internationalized Domain Name ccTLD .پاکستان representing Pakistan in Arabic script

      Resolved (2017.02.03.02), as part of the exercise of its responsibilities under the IANA Naming Function Contract with ICANN, PTI has reviewed and evaluated the request to delegate the .پاکستان country-code top-level domain to National Telecommunication Corporation. The documentation demonstrates that the proper procedures were followed in evaluating the request.

      Rationale for Resolution 2017.02.03.02

      Why the Board is addressing the issue now?

      In accordance with the IANA Naming Function Contract, PTI has evaluated a request for ccTLD delegation and is presenting its report to the Board for review. This review by the Board is intended to ensure that the proper procedures were followed.

      What is the proposal being considered?

      The proposal is to approve a request to create the .پاکستان country-code top-level domain in Arabic script and assign the role of manager to National Telecommunication Corporation.

      Which stakeholders or others were consulted?

      In the course of evaluating a delegation application, PTI consulted with the applicant and other interested parties. As part of the application process, the applicant needs to describe consultations that were performed within the country concerning the ccTLD, and their applicability to their local Internet community.

      What concerns or issues were raised by the community?

      PTI is not aware of any significant issues or concerns raised by the community in relation to this request.

      What significant materials did the Board review?

      The Board reviewed the following evaluations:

      • The domain is eligible for delegation, as it is a string that has been approved by the IDN ccTLD Fast Track process, and represents a country that is listed in the ISO 3166-1 standard;
      • The relevant government has been consulted and does not object;
      • The proposed manager and its contacts agree to their responsibilities for managing this domain;
      • The proposal has demonstrated appropriate local Internet community consultation and support;
      • The proposal does not contravene any known laws or regulations;
      • The proposal ensures the domain is managed locally in the country, and is bound under local law;
      • The proposed manager has confirmed they will manage the domain in a fair and equitable manner;
      • The proposed manager has demonstrated appropriate operational and technical skills and plans to operate the domain;
      • The proposed technical configuration meets the technical conformance requirements;
      • No specific risks or concerns relating to Internet stability have been identified; and
      • Staff have provided a recommendation that this request be implemented based on the factors considered.

      These evaluations are responsive to the appropriate criteria and policy frameworks, such as "Domain Name System Structure and Delegation" (RFC 1591) and "GAC Principles and Guidelines for the Delegation and Administration of Country Code Top Level Domains".
      As part of the process, Delegation and Transfer http://www.iana.org/reports.

      What factors the Board found to be significant?

      The Board did not identify any specific factors of concern with this request.

      Are there positive or negative community impacts?

      The timely approval of country-code domain name managers that meet the various public interest criteria is positive toward ICANN's overall mission, the local communities to which country- code top-level domains are designated to serve, and responsive to obligations under the IANA Naming Function Contract.

      Are there financial impacts or ramifications on ICANN (strategic plan, operating plan, budget); the community; and/or the public?

      The administration of country-code delegations in the DNS root zone is part of the IANA functions, and the delegation action should not cause any significant variance on pre-planned expenditure. It is not the role of ICANN to assess the financial impact of the internal operations of country-code top-level domains within a country.

      Are there any security, stability or resiliency issues relating to the DNS?

      ICANN does not believe this request poses any notable risks to security, stability or resiliency. This is an Organizational Administrative Function not requiring public comment.

    3. Security and Stability Advisory Committee Appointment

      Whereas, the Security and Stability Advisory Committee (SSAC) does review its membership and make adjustments from time-to-time.

      Whereas, the SSAC Membership Committee, on behalf of the SSAC, requests that the Board should appoint Paul Ebersman to the SSAC for a three-year term beginning immediately upon approval of the Board and ending on 31 December 2020.

      Resolved (2017.02.03.03), that the Board appoints Paul Ebersman to the SSAC for a three-year term beginning immediately upon approval of the Board and ending on 31 December 2020.

      Rationale for Resolution 2017.02.03.03

      The SSAC is a diverse group of individuals whose expertise in specific subject matters enables the SSAC to fulfill its charter and execute its mission. Since its inception, the SSAC has invited individuals with deep knowledge and experience in technical and security areas that are critical to the security and stability of the Internet's naming and address allocation systems.

      The SSAC's continued operation as a competent body is dependent on the accumulation of talented subject matter experts who have consented to volunteer their time and energies to the execution of the SSAC mission. Paul is currently a DNS Architect and Principal Engineer at Comcast NBC Universal. He is known from his lengthy active participation in IETF, DNS-OARC, NANOG, and RIPE, among others. Paul has a deep and thorough Internet operational background, including physical architectures, TCP/IP protocols, and especially the DNS. Most importantly, his experience includes very large-scale operations. The SSAC believes Paul would be a significant contributing member of the SSAC.

    4. Amendment to .XXX Registry Agreement

      Whereas, ICM requested an amendment to the .XXX Registry Agreement to align its fee schedule with the fee schedule contained in the new gTLD Registry Agreement.

      Whereas, the amendment to the .XXX Registry Agreement transitions the .XXX Agreement to a staged reduction in the registry-level transaction fee from $2.00 to $0.25 over a period of several years if there are no unresolved compliance issues relating to the Registry Operator.

      Whereas, the amendment to the .XXX Registry Agreement will increase the quarterly registry fixed fee payable to ICANN from $2,500 to $6,250, provided that, until the first adjustment to the registry-level transaction fee is effective, the Registry-Level Fees will not be less than US$90,000 per rolling twelve month period (as currently provided in the .XXX Registry Agreement).

      Whereas, ICANN conducted a review of ICM's recent performance under the current .XXX Registry Agreement and found that ICM substantially met its contractual requirements.

      Whereas, the amendment to the .XXX Registry Agreement contains the inclusion of contractual and operational compliance audit rights consistent with those contained in the new gTLD Registry Agreement.

      Whereas, the amendment to the .XXX Registry Agreement includes additional Rights Protection Mechanisms, including Uniform Rapid Suspension, and the addition of Public Interest Commitments which ICM has already included in the Registry Agreements corresponding to its new gTLDs for .ADULT, .PORN and .SEX.

      Whereas, ICANN commenced a public comment period from 12 October 2016 to 01 December 2016 on the amendment to the .XXX Registry Agreement.

      Whereas, the public comment forum on the amendment to the .XXX Registry Agreement closed on 01 December 2016, with ICANN receiving eight (8) comments (both from individuals and organizations/groups) for which ICANN subsequently published a summary and analysis.

      Whereas, the Board has determined that no revisions to the proposed amendment to the .XXX Registry Agreement are necessary after taking the comments into account.

      Resolved (2017.02.03.04), the amendment to the .XXX Registry Agreement, is approved and the President and CEO, or his designee(s), is authorized to take such actions as appropriate to finalize and execute the Agreement.

      Rationale for Resolution 2017.02.03.04

      Why the Board is addressing the issue now?

      Pursuant to Section 4.3 of the Registry Agreement, the parties have agreed to engage in bilateral, good faith negotiations regarding possible changes to the terms of the proposed amendment to the .XXX Registry Agreement upon request, including to Section 7.2 regarding fees and payments to ICANN. In 2016, ICM requested an amendment to align its fee schedule with the fee schedule contained in the new gTLD Registry Agreement. As a result of the bilateral negotiations between ICANN and ICM, this proposed amendment has been drafted to effect the requested changes to transition to the new gTLD Registry Agreement fee structure for fees payable to ICANN and to adopt additional safeguards and compliance audit requirements for the .XXX top-level domain.

      What is the proposal being considered?

      The amendment to the .XXX Registry Agreement approved by the Board provides a staged reduction in the registry-level transaction fee from $2.00 to $0.25 over a period of several years if there are no unresolved compliance issues relating to the Registry Operator and an increase in the quarterly registry fixed fee payable to ICANN from $2,500 to $6,250, provided that, until the first adjustment to the registry-level transaction fee is effective, the Registry-Level Fees will not be less than US$90,000 per rolling twelve month period (as currently provided in the .XXX Registry Agreement). Additionally, the amendment includes certain Rights Protections Mechanisms, including Uniform Rapid Suspension, contractual and operational compliance audits rights consistent with those contained in the new gTLD Registry Agreement and additional Public Interest Commitments that are contained in ICM's Registry Agreements for its new gTLDs corresponding to .ADULT, .PORN and .SEX.

      Which stakeholders or others were consulted?

      ICANN conducted a public comment period on the amendment to the .XXX Registry Agreement from 12 October 2016 through 01 December 2016, following which time the comments were summarized and analyzed. Additionally, ICANN engaged in bilateral negotiations with the Registry Operator to agree to the terms included in the proposed Registry Agreement amendment that was published for public comment.

      What concerns or issues were raised by the community?

      The proposed amendment to the .XXX Registry Agreement was published for public comment. Commenters expressed their views in four key areas during the public comment period:

      • Inclusion of new gTLD Rights Protection Mechanisms: Some commenters expressed support for the inclusion of Rights Protection Mechanisms in the amendment to the .XXX Registry Agreement, while others expressed concerns over the inclusion of certain Rights Protection Mechanisms, specifically Uniform Rapid Suspension, to legacy Registry Agreements. Additionally, commenters who objected to the inclusion of Rights Protection Mechanisms felt strongly that the Rights Protection Mechanisms Policy Development Process Review work should be completed prior to further inclusion of Rights Protection Mechanisms in the renewal of, or amendments to, legacy Registry Agreements.
      • Transition to New Fee Structure: Although none of the commenters objected to the updated fee schedule, some expressed concern regarding the justification for inclusion of additional new gTLD safeguards with the updated fee schedule. Commenters expressed concern that the staged reduction of fees should have been approved without additional conditions and that the registry fee reduction was a powerful incentive for ICM to agree to other proposed modifications effectively creating additional leverage for ICANN.
      • International Foundation for Online Responsibility: Commenters expressed concern over the lack of clarity on whether International Foundation for Online Responsibility had reviewed and approved the proposed amendment and International Foundation for Online Responsibility's role in contract negotiations between ICANN and ICM. Additionally, they stated that no further action should be taken by ICANN in regard to the proposed amendment until there was clear evidence that International Foundation for Online Responsibility, the policy-setting sponsoring entity for the .XXX gTLD, had reviewed and approved it. Within the public comment forum, ICM responded to these comments by explaining that ICM has not delegated all policy-making decisions and authority to International Foundation for Online Responsibility and that ICM has the ability to develop policies for .XXX gTLD in delineated areas. Commenters incorrectly asserted that ICM delegated all policy-making decisions and authority to its sponsoring organization, International Foundation for Online Responsibility. Additionally, ICM has the authority to develop the policies, terms and procedures proposed in the .XXX amendment and to negotiate directly with ICANN just as other sponsored gTLD Registry Operators have had the ability to develop policies, terms and procedures for delineated areas of their sponsored gTLDs and to negotiate their new terms and agreements with ICANN.
      • Negotiation Process for The Proposed Amendment to the .XXX Registry Agreement and Contract Negotiations in General: Commenters suggested that the negotiations for amendments to Registry Agreements should be more transparent and accountable, stating that stakeholders could be affected by the terms of the .XXX Registry Agreement, either directly or indirectly. There was also question as to how ICANN determined which additional terms to add to the proposed amendment. Commenters questioned how ICANN specifically determined whether or not to add Public Interest Commitments in the proposed amendment to the .XXX Registry Agreement, including if ICANN considered mandating that the Registry Operator use only ICANN accredited registrars that are party to the 2013 Registrar-Accreditation Agreement. Additionally, commenters raised concern over what they viewed as ICANN's use of bilateral contract negotiations to "effectuate policy". Some commenters urge ICANN and the Board to reconsider its positions, and to ensure that ICANN ceases and desists from taking similar action in the context of future RA renewals and amendments until the Rights Protection Mechanism Review Working Group renders the community's judgment as to whether the Uniform Rapid Suspension and other new gTLD Rights Protection Mechanisms should become Consensus Policy, including until such recommendation is reviewed by the Generic Names Supporting Organization Council and the ICANN Board.

      What significant materials did the Board review?

      As part of its deliberations, the Board reviewed various materials, including, but not limited to, the following materials and documents:

      What factors has the Board found to be significant?

      The Board carefully considered the public comments received for the amendment to the .XXX Registry Agreement, along with the summary and analysis of those comments. The Board also considered the terms agreed to by the Registry Operator as part of the bilateral negotiations with ICANN. The Board acknowledges the concerns expressed by some community members regarding the inclusion of new gTLD Rights Protection Mechanisms in legacy TLD agreements. Some of the provisions in the proposed amendment to the .XXX Registry Agreement are similar to the changes that were made to several legacy gTLDs, namely the .JOBS, .TRAVEL, .CAT and .PRO Registry Agreements, which were renewed utilizing the new gTLD Registry Agreement and as a result of bilateral negotiations between ICANN and the applicable Registry Operator.

      With respect to legacy gTLDs adopting the Uniform Rapid Suspension in their renewal Agreements as well as the inclusion of the Uniform Rapid Suspension and safeguards in the proposed amendment to the .XXX Registry Agreement, some commenters suggested the Uniform Rapid Suspension may only be added to non-new gTLD agreements only after a full Policy Development Process and that including the Uniform Rapid Suspension in incumbent gTLD agreements via a bilateral contract renewal or amendment process is unacceptable staff intervention into the policymaking process.

      Conversely, a different commenter expressed support for the inclusion of the Uniform Rapid Suspension through the proposed amendment to the .XXX Registry Agreement.

      It should be noted that the Uniform Rapid Suspension was recommended by the Implementation Recommendation Team as a mandatory Rights Protection Mechanism for all new gTLDs. In the Implementation Recommendation Team Final Report [PDF, 299 KB], the Implementation Recommendation Team stated: "Therefore, the IRT recommends that ICANN implement the URS, which would be mandatory for all new generic top-level domains ("gTLD"s), implemented through the new gTLD registry agreements, which would in turn bind registrars supplying new gTLDs to the marketplace.

      Although the Uniform Rapid Suspension was developed through the process described above, including public review and discussion in the GNSO, it has not been adopted as a consensus policy and ICANN has no ability to make it mandatory for any gTLDs other than those subject to the new gTLD Registry Agreement. Accordingly, ICANN has not moved to make the Uniform Rapid Suspension mandatory for any legacy gTLD. In the case of the proposed amendment to .XXX Registry Agreement, as well as legacy gTLD Registry Agreement renewals (namely, .JOBS, .TRAVEL, .CAT and. PRO), inclusion of the Uniform Rapid Suspension was agreed to through bilateral negotiations between the applicable Registry Operator and ICANN. In response to the comments, ICANN confirmed that during the bilateral negotiation process, ICANN and ICM did not discuss adding the Rapid Evaluation Service Policy. Additionally, there is nothing restricting Registry Operators from imposing additional Rights Protection Mechanisms, such as the Uniform Rapid Suspension, in other ways, such as through the Registry Services Evaluation Policy process.

      Finally, a question was posed inquiring, "Why neither the proposed amendment to the .XXX Registry Agreement nor the agreement as presently amended contains the base template PIC mandating that the Registry Operator use only ICANN accredited Registrars that are party to the 2013 Registrar-Accreditation Agreement". The Public Interest Commitments, or PICs, included in the proposed amendment contain terms agreed to bilaterally between ICANN and the Registry Operator. Inclusion of the 2013 RAA requirement could certainly be included in future negotiations with the Registry Operator but was not part of the proposed amendments that resulted from the bilateral negotiations between ICM and ICANN.

      Are there positive or negative community impacts?

      The Board's approval of the amendment to the .XXX Registry Agreement offers positive impacts to internet users due to the inclusion of certain Rights Protections Mechanisms, including Uniform Rapid Suspension, contractual and operational compliance audits rights consistent with those contained in the new gTLD Registry Agreement and additional Public Interest Commitments.

      Are there fiscal impacts or ramifications on ICANN (strategic plan, operating plan, budget); the community; and/or the public?

      There is no significant fiscal impact expected if ICANN approves the proposed amendment to the .XXX Registry Agreement. It should be noted however that as a result of approval of the Registry Agreement amendment, projected annual registry fees to ICANN will result in a minimal negative fiscal impact. This change has been considered in ICANN's budget.

      Are there any security, stability or resiliency issues relating to the DNS?

      There are no expected security, stability, or resiliency issues related to the DNS if ICANN approves the proposed amendment to the .XXX Registry Agreement .The proposed amendment, in fact, includes additional safeguards for the protection of registrars and registrants. As part of ICANN's organizational administrative function, ICANN published the proposed amendment to the .XXX Registry Agreement for public comment on 12 October 2016.

    5. Independent Review of the Generic Names Supporting Organization (GNSO) Plan of Recommendations

      Whereas, ICANN Bylaws Article IV, Section 4.4 calls on the ICANN Board to "cause a periodic review of the performance and operation of each Supporting Organization, each Supporting Organization Council, each Advisory Committee (other than the Governmental Advisory Committee), and the Nominating Committee by an entity or entities independent of the organization under review. The goal of the review, to be undertaken pursuant to such criteria and standards as the Board shall direct, shall be to determine (i) whether that organization has a continuing purpose in the ICANN structure, and (ii) if so, whether any change in structure or operations is desirable to improve its effectiveness."

      Whereas, the independent examiner of the GNSO Review produced a Final Report [PDF, 727 KB], containing thirty-six (36) recommendations in September 2015.

      Whereas, the Board adopted the Final Report and the GNSO Working Party's Feasibility and Prioritization Analysis of the GNSO Review Recommendations as adopted by the GNSO Council.

      Whereas, the GNSO Council formed the GNSO Review Working Group and subsequently adopted the Working Group's Implementation Plan.

      Resolved (2017.02.03.05), the Board acknowledges the GNSO Review Working Group's work and thanks them for producing a comprehensive Implementation Plan that was adopted by the GNSO Council.

      Resolved (2017.02.03.06), the Board supports the phased approach laid out in the Implementation Plan and acknowledges that more details with regard to implementation details may be required for implementation Phases 2 and 3.

      Resolved (2017.02.03.07), that the Board accepts the GNSO Review Implementation Plan.

      Resolved (2017.02.03.08), that the Board directs the Review Working Group to provide updates to the OEC every six months. Those bi-annual updates shall identify implementation achievements and future implementation plans. It is during these updates that the GNSO Review Working Group shall provide more details on implementation progress, and measurability. The OEC may request interim briefings if deemed necessary.

      Resolved (2017.02.03.09), that any budgetary implications of the GNSO review implementation shall be considered as part of the then-applicable annual budgeting processes.

      Rationale for Resolutions 2017.02.03.05 – 2017.02.03.09

      To ensure ICANN's multistakeholder model remains transparent and accountable, and to improve its performance, ICANN organizes independent reviews of its supporting organizations and advisory committees as prescribed in Article IV Section 4.4 of the ICANN Bylaws. The second GNSO Review started in 2014 and the independent examiner presented its Final Report in September 2015.

      The GNSO Review recommendations have the potential to advance ICANN's transparency and accountability objectives and have been considered carefully by the Board's Organizational Effectiveness Committee as well as by the full Board.

      The Board resolution will have a positive impact on ICANN and especially the GNSO as it reinforces ICANN's and the GNSO's commitment to maintaining and improving its accountability, transparency and organizational effectiveness throughout the implementation process.

      Due to the large number of recommendations that need to be implemented, the Board strongly supports the phased approach as laid out in the Implementation Plan (Exhibit A [PDF, 1.11 MB]). This will allow the community time to refine details as the implementation process proceeds– especially during Phases 2 and 3 (as laid out in Exhibit A [PDF, 1.11 MB]).

      Some recommendations – especially those foreseen to be implemented in Phases 2 and 3 – may benefit from additional details regarding their exact implementation. Due to the difficulty to predict these issues months – or years – in advance, the Board supports the idea that the GNSO Review Working Group provides updates bi-annually to the OEC. It is during these updates that the GNSO can provide greater implementation details with regard to those recommendations that are going to be scheduled for the forthcoming six-month period following the respective OEC update. At that time, the GNSO would be in a better position to flag any significant variations from the original implementation plan and timing. The GNSO will present any budgetary implications resulting from of the implementation as part of the development of its annual budget.

      Why is the Board addressing the issue?

      This resolution moves the second review of the GNSO into the implementation phase. Following the assessment of the Implementation Plan and the feedback from the Board's Organizational Effectiveness Committee, the Board is now in a position to consider the Plan and instruct the GNSO to start the implementation process. This step is an important part of the Organizational Review processes' checks and balances, to ensure that the spirit of Board-approved recommendations will be addressed through the implementation plans, while being mindful of budgetary and timing constraints.

      What is the proposal being considered?

      The proposal the Board is considering is the adoption of the GNSO Review Implementation Plan, drafted by the GNSO Review Working Group, adopted by the GNSO Council, and considered and supported by the Organizational Effectiveness Committee.

      What significant materials did the Board review?

      The Board reviewed the GNSO Review Implementation Plan (Exhibit A [PDF, 1.11 MB]) as adopted by the GNSO Council, and took onboard the Organizational Effectiveness Committee's considerations.

      Are there fiscal impacts or ramifications on ICANN (strategic plan, operating plan, or budget)?

      The work to improve the effectiveness of the GNSO organization – by implementing the recommendations resulting from the Review, may require financial resources. However, no requirement for additional funds are expected to arise from implementation Phase 1. Phases 2 and 3 may require financial resources but those are difficult to gauge for the future. In this context, the Board asks the GNSO Council in its resolution to provide regular updates on the implementation – both on what has been accomplished and what is the plan for the immediate future. These updates shall take place no less often than every six months and shall contain additional budgetary details for those recommendations scheduled for immediate implementation. At that time, the GNSO would be in a better position to flag any significant variations from the original implementation plan in terms of resources and timing.

      The GNSO did not foresee any budgetary implications from Phase 1. Although there may be budgetary implications for Phases 2 and 3, depending on the exact details of the implementation, those will be dealt with as part of ICANN's annual budgetary process.

      Are there any security, stability or resiliency issues relating to the DNS?

      This action is not expected to have a direct impact on the security, stability or resiliency of the DNS. Still, once the improvements are implemented, future activities of the GNSO, including policy-development will become more transparent and accountable, which in turn might indirectly impact the security, stability or resiliency of the DNS in a positive way.

      Is public comment required prior to Board action?

      The Draft Report of the independent examiner was posted for public comment. There is no public comment required prior to this Board action. The voice of the GNSO has been reflected throughout the review process – via the GNSO Review Working Party that performed the Feasibility and Prioritization Analysis; the GNSO Review Working Group that developed the implementation plan; and the GNSO Council that adopted the implementation plan.

    6. Appointment of Board Designees for New Specific Reviews: Registration Directory Service (RDS) Review Team

      Whereas, the ICANN Bylaws specify that the Board shall cause a periodic review to assess the effectiveness of the then current gTLD registry directory service and whether its implementation meets the legitimate needs of law enforcement, promoting consumer trust and safeguarding registrant data.

      Whereas, the Registration Directory Service Review (formerly referred to as the WHOIS Review) commenced with a Call for Volunteers, in October 2016.

      Whereas, under the Bylaws, the Board may appoint a Director or liaison to serve as a member of the Registration Directory Service Specific Review team.

      Resolved (2017.02.03.10), the Board hereby appoints Chris Disspain to serve as a member of the RDS Review Team and requests that this team develop and deliver to the Board its approved Terms of Reference and Work Plan by the 15th of May, 2017, to ensure that the team's scope and timeline is consistent with the requirements of the ICANN Bylaws.

      Rationale for Resolution 2017.02.03.10

      Why is the Board addressing the issue?

      On 1 October 2016, new Bylaws became effective following the IANA stewardship transition that introduced new commitments to enhance ICANN's accountability. These Bylaws incorporated the reviews under the Affirmation of Commitments, and specified new selection procedures for convening them, now referred to as "Specific Reviews." This created an opportunity for the Board to designate a representative to participate in Specific Reviews, to ensure that ICANN fulfills its commitment to remaining accountable to the Community, and to making improvements in the areas covered by the Specific Reviews. With the recent launch of the Second Review of Registration Directory Services in October 2016, the Board needs to appoint a representative for this important review.

      In light of the expectation that Specific Reviews should be completed in one year, the Board is requesting the Review Team to produce its work plan and expected milestones in a timely manner, to ensure that there are adequate resources available for the Review Team to complete its review.

      Are there fiscal impacts or ramifications on ICANN (strategic plan, operating plan, or budget)?

      The expenses associated with conducing the 2nd RDS Review are included in the ICANN Fiscal Year 2017 Budget.

      Is public comment required prior to Board action?

      There is no public comment required prior to this Board action.

    7. Appointment of Board Designees for New Specific Reviews: Second Security, Stability, and Resiliency of the Domain Name System

      Whereas, under the Bylaws, the Board is responsible for causing a periodic review of ICANN's execution of its commitment to enhance the operational stability, reliability, resiliency, security, and global interoperability of the systems and processes, both internal and external, that directly affect or are affected by the Internet's system of unique identifiers that ICANN coordinates (SSR Review).

      Whereas, the Second SSR Review commenced with a Call for Volunteers, in June 2016.

      Whereas, under the Bylaws, the Board may appoint a Director or liaison to serve as a member of the SSR2 Specific Review team.

      Resolved (2017.02.03.11), the Board hereby appoints Kaveh Ranjbar to serve as a member of the Second SSR Review Team, and requests that this team develop and deliver to the Board their approved Terms of Reference and Work Plan by the 30th of March, to ensure that the team's scope and timeline is consistent with the requirements of the ICANN Bylaws.

      Rationale for Resolution 2017.02.03.11

      Why is the Board addressing the issue?

      On 1 October 2016, new Bylaws became effective following the IANA stewardship transition that introduced new commitments to enhance ICANN's accountability. These Bylaws incorporated the reviews under the Affirmation of Commitments, and specified new selection procedures for convening them, now referred to as "Specific Reviews." This created an opportunity for the Board to designate a representative to participate in Specific Reviews, to ensure that ICANN fulfills its commitment to remaining accountable to the Community, and to making improvements in the areas covered by the Specific Reviews. With the recent launch of the Second Review of Security, Stability & Resiliency in June, 2016, the Board needs to convene the Review Team and appoint a representative for this important review.

      In light of the expectation that Specific Reviews should be completed in one year, the Board is requesting the Review Team to produce its work plan and expected milestones in a timely manner, to ensure that there are adequate resources available for the Review Team to complete its review.

      Are there fiscal impacts or ramifications on ICANN (strategic plan, operating plan, or budget)?

      The expenses associated with conducing the SSR-2 Review are included in the ICANN Fiscal Year 2017 Budget.

      Is public comment required prior to Board action?

      There is no public comment required prior to this Board action.

    8. GNSO Council Request: Compliance with Inter-Registrar Transfer Policy Part C (IRTP-C)

      Whereas, the Generic Names Supporting Organization (GNSO) Council sent a letter [PDF, 109 KB] to the ICANN Board on 1 December 2016 ("GNSO Council Letter") regarding implementation concerns with the Inter-Registrar Transfer Policy ("Transfer Policy") – Part C.

      Whereas, the GNSO Council Letter requested the Board to instruct ICANN org to defer compliance enforcement on the removal or addition privacy/proxy within the Transfer Policy until implementation issues have been resolved.

      Whereas, on 21 December 2016, the ICANN Board provided a response [PDF, 265 KB] to the GNSO Council, instructing the ICANN President and CEO to defer compliance enforcement on the removal or addition privacy/proxy within the Transfer Policy until implementation issues have been resolved.

      Resolved (2017.02.03.12), the Board confirms the instruction to the ICANN President and CEO to defer compliance enforcement on the removal or addition privacy/proxy within the Transfer Policy until implementation issues have been resolved.

      Resolved (2017.02.03.13), the Board intends to address at a subsequent meeting the request from the GNSO Council to instruct ICANN org to work with the Registrar Stakeholder Group and other interested parties to evaluate potential alternatives to the implementation concerns related to the Transfer Policy Part C.

      Rationale for Resolutions 2017.02.03.12 – 2017.02.03.13

      Why is the Board addressing this issue now?

      On 1 December 2016, the Generic Names Supporting Organization (GNSO) Council delivered a letter [PDF, 109 KB] to the ICANN Board, in which it raised concerns related to the implementation of Transfer Policy Part C. The Board is addressing the issue now because the updated Transfer Policy has already been implemented, and the policy cannot be modified without explicit direction from the Board.

      What is the proposal being considered?

      The GNSO Council delivered a letter [PDF, 109 KB] to the ICANN Board, in which it is requesting the Board to do the following: (1) instruct ICANN org to work with the Registrar Stakeholder Group and other interested parties to evaluate alternatives for evaluation of the implementation concerns, which could include moving this issue to the Privacy & Proxy Services Accreditation Issues Implementation Review Team, reconstituting the Transfer Policy Part C Implementation Review Team, or employing some other new mechanisms under the Policy & Implementation principles and requirements from the from the GNSO Policy & Implementation Working Group Final Recommendations Report [PDF, 1.53 MB], adopted by the GNSO Council; and (2) instruct ICANN org to defer any privacy/proxy service compliance enforcement from the Transfer Policy relating to the enabling or disabling of privacy/proxy services pending further consultation and determination of this issue.

      Specifically, the concerns relate to whether the addition/removal of a privacy/proxy service potentially triggers the 60-day inter-registrar transfer lock described in the updated Transfer Policy. The policy recommendations were silent with respect to the addition/removal of privacy/proxy services, and at the time the policy was implemented, the current issue and potential harms described by the GNSO Council were not brought to ICANN org's attention.

      The requests from the GNSO Council seek to further discuss the addition/removal of privacy/proxy services and the potential harms associated with the 60-day inter-registrar transfer lock in the updated Transfer Policy; while the issue is discussed, in a forum yet to be determined, the GNSO Council requests deferred compliance enforcement with respect to addition/removal of privacy/proxy services within the Transfer Policy. The Board will discuss the forum where the issue should be moved in a subsequent meeting.

      What stakeholders or others were consulted?

      These updates to the Transfer Policy were discussed with the GNSO Council, Registrar Stakeholder Group, and the ICANN community at multiple public sessions at ICANN meetings.

      What significant materials did the Board review?

      In adopting its response to the GNSO Council Letter, the Board reviewed various materials, including, but not limited to, the following materials and documents:

      Are there positive or negative community impacts?

      The adoption of the GNSO Council's request will have a positive impact on the community because it will ensure that the community can further discuss an issue the Working Group failed to address, as well as the potential harms the GNSO Council described regarding the addition/removal of privacy/proxy services within the Transfer Policy.

      Are there fiscal impacts or ramifications on ICANN (strategic plan, operating plan, budget); the community; and/or the public?

      There is no fiscal impact expected.

      Are there any security, stability or resiliency issues relating to the DNS?

      Approval of the resolution will not impact security, stability or resiliency issues relating to the DNS. This is an Organizational Administrative function that does not require public comment.

    9. GAC Advice: Hyderabad Communiqué (November 2016)

      Whereas, the Governmental Advisory Committee (GAC) met during the ICANN57 meeting in Hyderabad and issued advice to the ICANN Board in a Communiqué [PDF, 638 KB] on 8 November 2016 ("Hyderabad Communiqué").

      Whereas, the Hyderabad Communiqué was the subject of an exchange [PDF, 224 KB] between the Board and the GAC on 15 December 2016.

      Whereas, in a 21 December 2016 letter [PDF, 433 KB], the GNSO Council provided feedback to the Board concerning advice in the Hyderabad Communiqué relevant to generic top-level domains to inform the Board and the community of gTLD policy activities that may relate to advice provided by the GAC.

      Whereas, the Board developed an iteration of the scorecard to respond to the GAC's advice in the Hyderabad Communiqué, taking into account the exchange between the Board and the GAC and the information provided by the GNSO Council.

      Resolved (2017.02.03.14), the Board adopts the scorecard titled "GAC Advice – Hyderabad Communiqué: Actions and Updates (3 February 2017) [PDF, 67 KB]" in response to items of GAC advice in the Hyderabad Communiqué.

      Rationale for Resolution 2017.02.03.14

      Article 12, Section 12.2(a)(ix) of the ICANN Bylaws permits the GAC to "put issues to the Board directly, either by way of comment or prior advice, or by way of specifically recommending action or new policy development or revision to existing policies." In its Hyderabad Communiqué (8 November 2016), the GAC issued advice to the Board on various matters including: (1) policies and procedures for future rounds of the New gTLD Program; (2) mitigating domain name abuse; (3) permitting registry operators to allow registration of two-letter domain names at the second level that correspond to country/territory codes; (4) protection of names and acronyms of Intergovernmental Organizations (IGOs) in gTLDs; (5) protection of identifiers of the Red Cross/Red Crescent/Red Crystal in gTLDs; (6) the GAC's Underserved Regions activities; (7) the guidelines for the Extended Process String Similarity Review Panel for internationalized domain name (IDN) ccTLDs; and (8) enchantments to the mutual cooperation and understanding between the GAC, ICANN Board, and Supporting Organizations. The ICANN Bylaws require the Board to take into account the GAC's advice on public policy matters in the formulation and adoption of the polices. If the Board decides to take an action that is not consistent with the GAC advice, it must inform the GAC and state the reasons why it decided not to follow the advice. Any GAC advice approved by a full consensus of the GAC (as defined in the Bylaws) may only be rejected by a vote of no less than 60% of the Board, and the GAC and the Board will then try, in good faith and in a timely and efficient manner, to find a mutually acceptable solution.

      At this time, the Board is taking action to address the advice from the GAC in the Hyderabad Communiqué. The Board's actions are described in scorecard dated 03 February 2017 [PDF, 67 KB].

      In adopting its response to the GAC advice in the Hyderabad Communiqué, the Board reviewed various materials, including, but not limited to, the following materials and documents:

      The adoption of the GAC advice as provided in the scorecard will have a positive impact on the community because it will assist with resolving the advice from the GAC concerning gTLDs and other matters. There are no foreseen fiscal impacts associated with the adoption of this resolution. Approval of the resolution will not impact security, stability or resiliency issues relating to the DNS. This is an Organizational Administrative function that does not require public comment.

    10. Publication of Board Committees Activity Reports

      Whereas, on 26 June 2014, the ICANN Board accepted the recommendations of the Final Report of the Second Accountability and Transparency Review Team (ATRT2) published on December 31, 2013.

      Whereas, Recommendation 1 stated "The Board should develop objective measures for determining the quality of ICANN Board members and the success of Board improvement efforts, and analyze those findings over time."

      Whereas, Recommendation 2 stated "The Board should develop metrics to measure the effectiveness of the Board's functioning and improvement efforts, and publish the materials used for training to gauge levels of improvement."

      Whereas, Recommendation 3 stated "The Board should conduct qualitative/quantitative studies to determine how the qualifications of Board candidate pools change over time and should regularly assess Directors' compensation levels against prevailing standards."

      Whereas, the Board Governance Committee (BGC) considered ATRT2 Recommendations and provided the Board with recommendations on implementation, including among other things the development of Key Performance Indicators to help measure the Board's function and improvement efforts.

      Whereas, the Board recognizes the importance of measuring how well the Board functions, including at Committee level, and of measuring the Board's improvement efforts.

      Whereas, the Key Performance Indicators list approved by the Board on 3 February 2016, includes a KPI on the percentage of Board Committees that produced a report every six months.

      Whereas, the Board Committees, to the extent it is consistent with the Board activity, produce an activity report every six month.

      Whereas, the Board intends to improve its transparency and accountability and considers that these Committee Activity Reports should be made available to the Community.

      Resolved (2017.02.03.15) the Board approves the publication of the Board Committees Activity Reports released every six month on the Board Activity pages of the ICANN website: (https://www.icann.org/resources/pages/documents-2014-03-24-en).

      Rationale for Resolution 2017.02.03.15

      The implementation of recommendations [PDF, 3.46 MB] from the Second Accountability and Transparency Review Team (ATRT2) began in June 2014, shortly after the Board accepted the recommendations. The initial Implementation Plan scheduled the completion of Recommendations 1, 2 and 3 in June 2015, which was later revised to February 2016, to allow Board Governance Committee (BGC) to further discuss the overall process, including the development of Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) to help measure the efforts called for in ATRT2 Recommendations 1, 2 and 3.

      The BCG is working with the Board to review comprehensively the Board's performance and improvement efforts and to develop relevant and substantive KPIs to measure both.

      With respect to ATRT 2 Recommendation 2, which is partly redundant to Recommendation 1, a proposed first list of KPIs measures the Board and the Board's Committees current logistical functioning. Among the approved set of KPIs, the percentage of Board Committees that produced a report every six month follows a best practice in global, not-for-profit organizations.

      The Board Committees therefore produce an activity report every six months to the extent it is relevant and consistent with their activity.

      Pursuing its effort towards increased transparency and accountability, the Board considers that the Board Committees Activity Reports constitute a source of relevant information that should be made available to the Community. The Board therefore considers that these activity reports should be published on the ICANN website, under the Board Activity section, every six months.

      Publishing the Board Committees Activity Reports will have no direct fiscal impact on ICANN or the community that is not already budgeted, and will not have an impact of the security, stability and resiliency of the domain name system.

      This is an Organization Administrative Function that does not require public comment.

    11. Appointment of Independent Auditors

      Whereas, Article XVI of the ICANN Bylaws (http://www.icann.org/general/bylaws.htm) requires that after the end of the fiscal year, the books of ICANN must be audited by certified public accountants, which shall be appointed by the Board.

      Whereas, the Board Audit Committee has discussed the engagement of the independent auditor for the fiscal year ending 30 June 2017, and has recommended that the Board authorize the President and CEO, or his designee(s), to take all steps necessary to engage BDO LLP and BDO member firms.

      Resolved (2017.02.03.16), the Board authorizes the President and CEO, or his designee(s), to take all steps necessary to engage BDO LLP and BDO member firms as the auditors for the financial statements for the fiscal year ending 30 June 2017.

      Rationale for Resolution 2017.02.03.16

      The audit firm BDO LLP and BDO member firms were engaged for the annual independent audits of the fiscal year end 30 June 2014 through fiscal year end 30 June 2016. Based on the report from staff and the Audit Committee's evaluation of the work performed, the committee has unanimously recommended that the Board authorize the President and CEO, or his designee(s), to take all steps necessary to engage BDO LLP and BDO member firms as ICANN's annual independent auditor for the fiscal year ended 30 June 2017 for any annual independent audit requirements in any jurisdiction.

      The engagement of an independent auditor is in fulfilment of ICANN's obligations to undertake an audit of ICANN's financial statements. This furthers ICANN's accountability to its Bylaws and processes, and the results of the independent auditors work will be publicly available. There is a fiscal impact to the engagement that has already been budgeted. There is no impact on the security or the stability of the DNS as a result of this appointment.

      This is an Organizational Administrative Function not requiring public comment.

    All members of the Board present voted in favor of Resolutions 2017.02.03.01, 2017.02.03.02, 2017.02.03.03, 2017.02.03.04, 2017.02.03.05, 2017.02.03.06, 2017.02.03.07, 2017.02.03.08, 2017.02.03.09, 2017.02.03.10, 2017.02.03.11, 2017.02.03.12, 2017.02.03.13, 2017.02.03.14, 2017.02.03.15, and 2017.02.03.16. The Resolutions carried.

  2. Main Agenda:

    1. Consideration of Board Governance Committee's Advice to form a Board Accountability Mechanisms Committee

      Chris Disspain, Chair of the Board Governance Committee (BGC), introduced the agenda item. Chris explained that as part of the annual review of its Charter, the BGC considered whether the Committee's current and potential future workload for Reconsideration Requests limits the Committee's ability to accomplish its other board governance responsibilities. As part of this process, the BGC noted that over the past several years, its work relating to Reconsideration Requests have increased significantly, particularly with the New gTLD Program. In addition, Article 4 of the newly amended Bylaws amended ICANN's accountability mechanisms, which will result in a likely increase in volume and complexity of some of the operations and handling of accountability mechanisms filings. The Committee concluded that in order for the BGC to devote sufficient time to its governance duties, it might be more appropriate if a different Board committee handled the Reconsideration responsibilities while the BGC retains its core governance duties. Accordingly, The BGC recommends that the Board approve the initiation of a Fundamental Bylaws change to the segregate the BGC's governance responsibilities from its Reconsideration Request responsibilities by redesignating the Reconsideration responsibilities to a different Board committee.

      The Chair inquired about the process and time that it takes for a Fundamental Bylaws change, and how will Reconsideration Requests be handled in the interim. Chris noted that the BGC is still discussing possible interim measures.

      Rinalia Abdul Rahim inquired about the advantages of having a separate committee to address accountability issues.

      Another Director suggested that the Reconsideration responsibilities be handled by a sub-committee of the BGC and queried whether the BGC in effect would have to report the work of a subcommittee because the Bylaws require that the entire BGC provide a recommendation to the Board.

      Mike Silber expressed his objection to the proposed resolution. Mike stated that Bylaws mandate the BGC to deal with the accountability mechanisms process. It doesn't mandate the BGC to deal with all of the board effectiveness and efficiency issues that are currently not being dealt with adequately because of the lack of capacity and time, given the amount of time the BGC is spending dealing with accountability mechanism. Mike suggested that a new committee be developed handle Board efficiency and effectiveness issues, noting that such an action would not constitute a Fundamental Bylaws change. Mike also suggested polling the SO and AC leaders at the next CEO call before engaging in a Fundamental Bylaws change.

      The General Counsel and Secretary explained that Board governance committees exist in nonprofits and corporations worldwide, and are expected to perform a standard set of functions. When the Bylaws were drafted, the legal teams and the community participants understood and expected that the BGC was set up to manage those types of functions and believed that accountability mechanisms should be dealt with within that skill set. The General Counsel and Secretary advised that if the Board where to take what is considered to be standard BGC functions and move that away to populate the committee differently may potentially defeat the community's understanding of what they were asking ICANN to do. The General Counsel and Secretary advised that the Board communicate with the community and ensure that it is not defeating the community's request of ICANN to deal with these matters in a certain way without a consultation.

      Chris agreed with the General Counsel and Secretary and stated that it would not be appropriate to redesignate the BGC's governance functions to another committee.

      Cherine Chalaby proposed creating a subcommittee, on an interim basis, to handle the governance functions while the BGC handled the Reconsideration process until the Fundamental Bylaws revisions is complete.

      Chris reiterated that the BGC is still working on an interim solution but expressed the importance of initiating the Fundamental Bylaws change.

      Ron da Silva expressed his support for the proposed resolution.

      Chris moved and Asha Hemrajani seconded the proposed resolution. The Board took the following actions:

      Whereas, the Board Governance Committee (BGC) was established by the ICANN Board at its 12 March 2003 meeting.

      Whereas, the BGC's Charter defines the BGC's Purpose and Scope of Responsibilities.

      Whereas, in 2008, the Board delegated to the BGC the responsibility for considering Reconsideration Requests, a responsibility that was previously delegated to a stand-alone committee of the Board.

      Whereas, the volume of Reconsideration Requests has increased exponentially in recent years with the introduction of the New gTLD Program in 2012.

      Whereas, as a result of the increased volume of Reconsideration Requests, the BGC has focused more of its time on its Reconsideration duties and less on its other governance duties.

      Whereas, the new Bylaws in effect on 1 October 2016 expanded the scope of the Reconsideration process, as well as ICANN's other accountability mechanisms and therefore, it is anticipated that the volume and complexity of accountability mechanisms filed, including Reconsideration Requests, will likely increase.

      Whereas, ICANN is committed to meeting the community's call for enhanced accountability, and to supporting the enhanced accountability mechanisms put in place in the new Bylaws.

      Whereas, the BGC recommends that the Board's performance would be enhanced through the development of a Board committee specifically charged with oversight of ICANN Accountability Mechanisms, as the Board deems appropriate.

      Whereas, the BGC also recommends that to enhance its own performance and focus on core governance activities, that a new committee dedicated to oversight of ICANN's accountability mechanisms might be better suited to take on the BGC's Reconsideration responsibilities, while keeping other governance responsibilities with the BGC.

      Whereas, the redesignation of the BGC's Reconsideration responsibilities set forth under Article 4, Section 4.2(e) requires an amendment to the Fundamental Bylaws in accordance with Article 25, Section 25.2 of the ICANN Bylaws.

      Whereas, after consideration, the Board agrees with the BGC's recommendations.

      Resolved (2017.02.03.17), the Board hereby approves the initiation of the process to amend the Fundamental Bylaws to redesignate the Reconsideration responsibilities vested in the Board Governance Committee (BCG) under Article 4, Section 4.2(e) of the ICANN Bylaws to another Board committee.

      Resolved (2017.02.03.18), the Board directs the President and CEO, or his designee(s), to take all steps necessary in accordance with Bylaws Article 25.2 to initiate the process to amend Bylaws Article 4, Section 4.2 to redesignate the Reconsideration responsibilities vested in the BGC under Article 4, Section 4.2(e) to another Board committee.

      Resolved (2017.02.03.19), if the proposed amendment to the Fundamental Bylaws is approved in accordance with Article 25.2 of the Bylaws, the Board will constitute the Board Accountability Mechanisms Committee (BAMC).

      Nineteen members of the Board present voted in favor of Resolutions 2017.02.03.17, 2017.02.03.18, and 2017.02.03.19. Mike Silber abstained. The Resolutions carried. Mike noted for the record that he believes that the proposed resolutions are an inefficient way of achieving a desirable result.

      Rationale for Resolutions 2017.02.03.17 – 2017.02.03.19

      The Board Governance Committee (BGC) is responsible for assisting the Board to enhance its performance. (Charter, I.A, at https://www.icann.org/resources/pages/charter-06-2012-02-25-en). In 2008, the Board designated the to the BGC the responsibility for considering Reconsideration Requests, a responsibility that was previously designated to a stand-alone committee of the Board. Over the past several years, the BGC's work relating to Reconsideration Requests have increased exponentially, particularly with the New gTLD Program. As a result of the increased volume of Reconsideration Requests, the BGC was required to focus more of its time on Reconsideration Requests and less on its other governance duties. Given that the new Bylaws in effect on 1 October 2016 expanded the scope of the Reconsideration process, as well as ICANN's other accountability mechanisms and therefore, it is anticipated that the volume and complexity of accountability mechanisms filed, including Reconsideration Requests, will likely increase. Thus, the BGC's workload on Reconsideration Requests will not likely lessen.

      As part of its responsibilities, the BGC is tasked with "periodically review[ing] the charters of the Board Committees, including its own charter and work with the members of the Board Committees to develop recommendations to the Board for any charter adjustments deemed advisable." (BGC Charter, I.A, at https://www.icann.org/resources/pages/charter-06-2012-02-25-en) In this role, the BGC has identified that Board's performance would be enhanced through the development of a Board committee specifically charged with oversight of ICANN Accountability Mechanisms, as the Board deems appropriate. The BGC also recommends that to enhance its own performance and focus on core governance activities, that a new committee dedicated to oversight of ICANN's accountability mechanisms might be better suited to take on the BGC's Reconsideration responsibilities, while keeping other governance responsibilities with the BGC.

      This action will have no financial impact on the organization and no direct impact on the security, stability or resiliency of the domain name system.

      This is an Organizational Administrative Action not requiring public comment.

The Chair called the meeting to a close.

Published on 17 March 2017

Domain Name System
Internationalized Domain Name ,IDN,"IDNs are domain names that include characters used in the local representation of languages that are not written with the twenty-six letters of the basic Latin alphabet ""a-z"". An IDN can contain Latin letters with diacritical marks, as required by many European languages, or may consist of characters from non-Latin scripts such as Arabic or Chinese. Many languages also use other types of digits than the European ""0-9"". The basic Latin alphabet together with the European-Arabic digits are, for the purpose of domain names, termed ""ASCII characters"" (ASCII = American Standard Code for Information Interchange). These are also included in the broader range of ""Unicode characters"" that provides the basis for IDNs. The ""hostname rule"" requires that all domain names of the type under consideration here are stored in the DNS using only the ASCII characters listed above, with the one further addition of the hyphen ""-"". The Unicode form of an IDN therefore requires special encoding before it is entered into the DNS. The following terminology is used when distinguishing between these forms: A domain name consists of a series of ""labels"" (separated by ""dots""). The ASCII form of an IDN label is termed an ""A-label"". All operations defined in the DNS protocol use A-labels exclusively. The Unicode form, which a user expects to be displayed, is termed a ""U-label"". The difference may be illustrated with the Hindi word for ""test"" — परीका — appearing here as a U-label would (in the Devanagari script). A special form of ""ASCII compatible encoding"" (abbreviated ACE) is applied to this to produce the corresponding A-label: xn--11b5bs1di. A domain name that only includes ASCII letters, digits, and hyphens is termed an ""LDH label"". Although the definitions of A-labels and LDH-labels overlap, a name consisting exclusively of LDH labels, such as""icann.org"" is not an IDN."