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Minutes | Board Governance Committee (BGC) Meeting

BGC Attendees: Rinalia Abdul Rahim, Cherine Chalaby, Chris Disspain (Chair), Erika Mann Mike Silber, Bruce Tonkin and Suzanne Woolf

Other Board Member Attendees: Rafael Lito Ibarra, Markus Kummer, and George Sadowsky

ICANN Executive and Staff Attendees: Akram Atallah (President and CEO; President, Global Domains Division), Allen Grogan (Chief Contract Compliance Officer), Jamie Hedlund (VP, Strategic Programs, Global Domains Division), John Jeffrey (General Counsel and Secretary), Melissa King (VP, Board Operations), Wendy Profit (Board Operations Specialist), Amy Stathos (Deputy General Counsel), and Christine Willett (VP of gTLD Operations)

Invited Guest: Akinori Maemura


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

  1. Minutes – The BGC approved the Minutes from the meeting on 15 May 2016.
  2. Expressions of Interest for 2017 Nominating Committee Chair and Chair-Elect – Staff provided an overview of the Expressions of Interest (EOIs) for 2017 Nominating Committee (NomCom) Chair and Chair-Elect positions that have been received thus far, and explained that the time period during which EOIs may be submitted has been extended through 30 June 2016. The BGC agreed that the EOIs will be reviewed at the next BGC meeting, which is scheduled to occur in July.
  3. Updates:

    Committee and Board Leadership 360-Degree Evaluations – Staff provided an update on the development of the 360-degree evaluation questionnaire for Board and Committee leadership positions. The BGC agreed that further information and discussion is needed in order to properly tailor the questionnaire for this purpose.

    Nominating Committee Leadership 360-Degree Reviews – Staff provided an update on the process of the annual Nominating Committee (NomCom) leadership 360-degree review, which will begin soon after ICANN56 concludes. The BGC noted that the NomCom typically publishes the results of those reviews, and it is expected that the NomCom will do the same this year.

  4. BGC Bi-Annual Committee Report – The BGC discussed the bi-annual committee reports that are to be provided to the Board. For the BGC, the first report will cover 1 January 2016 through 30 June 2016, and each report will cover the prior six-month period. The current report includes Reconsideration Request Determinations and Recommendations, as well as other matters discussed and agreed upon in the BGC meetings.
  5. Reconsideration Request 16-7 – Staff briefed the BGC regarding the request submitted by dotMusic Limited and ten other requesters (collectively, Requesters) seeking reconsideration of ICANN staff’s response to a request submitted by the Requesters pursuant to ICANN’s Document Information Disclosure Policy (DIDP Response). The Requesters’ DIDP request sought documents relating to the Community Priority Evaluation (CPE) report finding that DotMusic’s application for .MUSIC did not prevail in CPE, and ICANN’s change request policies. In the DIDP Response, ICANN provided numerous links to publicly available responsive documents, one previously non-public responsive document, an explanation of why one or more of the DIDP Conditions for Nondisclosure apply, and, where applicable, a statement that no responsive documents exist. After discussion, the BGC determined that the Requesters do not identify any misapplication of policy or procedure by ICANN staff. Substantive disagreements with a DIDP response are not proper bases for reconsideration. Because the Requesters have not shown that ICANN staff acted in contravention of established policy or procedure, the BGC concluded that Request 16-7 be denied.
  6. Reconsideration Request 16-4 – Staff briefed the BGC regarding the request by Roman Belichenko (Requester) seeking reconsideration of the Contractual Compliance department’s response to the Requester’s complaint regarding a dispute about a domain name between the Requester and the relevant domain name registrar. The Requester disagrees with the registrar’s determination that the Requester violated the registrar’s Universal Terms of Service, and its resulting decision to suspend the Requester’s domain name and refusal to transfer the domain name. The Requester, however, does not present any evidence to show a misapplication of any policy or procedure by ICANN staff when it considered and evaluated the Requester’s complaint. At the 12 April 2016 BGC meeting, the BGC requested that staff obtain additional information regarding the nature and basis of the dispute between the registrant and registrar, which it did. Staff explained that the registrar did not violate the Registrar Accreditation Agreement or any consensus policy in taking the actions that it did with respect to the domain name. After discussion, the BGC determined that the Requester has not stated proper grounds for reconsideration and therefore Request 16-4 is denied.
  7. Reconsideration Request 16-3 – Staff briefed the BGC regarding the request by Dotgay LLC (Requester) seeking reconsideration of the BGC’s denial of Request 15-21 (challenging the second Community Priority Evaluation Report on the Requester’s .GAY application). In Request 16-3, the Requester contends that the EIU improperly permitted someone other than one of the “evaluators” to send verification emails to the authors of letters of support and opposition to the Application, which the Requester contends contravenes applicable policies and procedures. The Requester made a telephonic presentation regarding Request 16-3 to the BGC at its meeting on 15 May 2016, and submitted a written summary of its presentation on 17 May 2016. The BGC found that the process of sending emails to authors of letters is an administrative task, and the responses to those emails were communicated to both of the evaluators and the entire core team in order to permit a full and complete evaluation and verification in accordance with Module 4.2.3 of the Guidebook, which included an evaluator’s substantive evaluation of the letters and verification responses in compliance with the CPE Panel Process. After discussion, the BGC concluded that the Requester has not identified any misapplication of policy or procedure by the EIU that materially or adversely affected the Requester, and has not identified any action by the Board that has been taken without consideration of material information or in reliance upon false or inaccurate information. The BGC therefore agreed to recommend to the Board that Request 16-3 be denied.
  8. Reconsideration Request 15-16 – Bruce Tonkin abstained from participation in this matter noting a potential conflict of interest, and Suzanne Woolf was not present for this discussion. Staff briefed the BGC regarding the request by CPA Australia (Requester) seeking reconsideration of the Community Priority Evaluation panel’s (CPE Panel’s) report, and ICANN’s acceptance of that report, finding that the Requester’s application for .CPA did not prevail in CPE (CPE Report). The AICPA (see below) made a presentation regarding Request 15-17 to the BGC at its meeting on 12 April 2016, and a representative from CPA Australia also provided a statement during that presentation. After discussion, the BGC determined that the CPE Panel adhered to the applicable policies and procedures in rendering the CPE Report, and the Requester’s substantive disagreements with the CPE Report are not proper bases for reconsideration. The BGC therefore determined that Request 15-16 be denied.
  9. Reconsideration Request 15-17 – Bruce Tonkin abstained from participation in this matter noting a potential conflict of interest, and Suzanne Woolf was not present for this discussion. Staff briefed the BGC regarding the request by the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (Requester) seeking reconsideration of the Community Priority Evaluation panel’s (CPE Panel’s) report, and ICANN’s acceptance of that report, finding that the Requester’s application for .CPA did not prevail in CPE (CPE Report). The Requester made a presentation regarding Request 15-17 to the BGC at its meeting on 12 April 2016, and submitted a written summary of that presentation on 28 April 2016. After discussion, the BGC determined that the CPE Panel adhered to the applicable policies and procedures in rendering the CPE Report, and the Requester’s substantive disagreements with the CPE Report are not proper bases for reconsideration. The BGC therefore determined that Request 15-17 be denied.
  10. AOB – The BGC requested that staff provide a briefing to the Board regarding the process, criteria, and evaluation relating to the Community Priority Evaluation.

Published 01 September 2016

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."