Almost exactly two years ago, the US administration announced its intent to let expire its contract with Icann, related to the coordination of the Internet’s technical resources, the IANA contract. Icann was tasked to facilitate the elaboration of a transition plan. After two intense years, on Thursday March 10th, this transition plan was formally sent.
Since I’ve had the priviledge of co chairing one of the key working groups, the accountability working group, I spoke, in French, during the public meeting of the Icann Board. Below is a translation of this speech.
Although the approval of these proposals is only a milestone, and much remains to be done to implement them and, beyond that, pursue our work in order to enhance and improve Icann, for example in terms of diversity and transparence, it was a historic moment, and I am proud that Afnic’s community played a significant role.
Members of the Icann Board,
Dear Colleagues and friends,
We have had the honour to deliver to you this morning our 12 recommendations.
On behalf of all members and participants of our working group on enhancing Icann’s accountability, I’d like to express our gratitude to the Icann community for their contributions to our process, their submissions to our calls for public comments and their endorsement of our proposals this week. Our gratitude extends to the Icann Board, whose engagement with our group was considerable. This will set, I am sure, an example upon which to build to improve collaboration between the Board and the Community.
Our group also wishes to highlight the amazing commitment of the Icann staff to support our work. These people are jewels, with outstanding skills and dedication. We urge the Board to ensure that they adequately recognize them, and provide them even more opportunities to demonstrate their ability to excel.
Finally, we invite everyone to take a moment to reflect upon the contribution of the US administration to this process. We thank them for the trust they exhibited in our Comunity by initiating, two years ago, this transition process, which is about to translate into extra workload for them.
These 12 recommendations are the outcome of a truly collective, immense, effort. Beyond the recommendations, everyone of us learnt a lot, and we have developed personal connections outside the usual groups and silos. This outcome exemplifies the values of our respective communities, and our personal commitments for the benefit of the Internet.
And since we can afford being slightly emphatic today, I would like to summarize here the purpose of our proposals. As we are all here in wonderful Marrakesh, and considering that these proposals will constitue the framework for Icann’s governance in the future, allow me to name this “the Marrakesh Pact“.
This Pact comes in two parts, and two parts only:
- The Community, open and multistakeholder, and the Icann Board hold each other accountable for the purpose of acting in the global public interest, within the scope of Icann’s Mission.
- Within Icann, everyone has a role and responsibility, we respect and recognize the value of these roles and responsibilities, and act on an equal footing.
This Pact is our shared responsibility. Let us communicate it, hold it close to our heart and, above all, now that the proposals are approved, let’s get it done !