28 October 2015 - The ICANN 54 meeting in Dublin, Ireland, concluded a few days ago. During this meeting, much progress was made on the IANA stewardship transition proposal.
The IANA Stewardship Transition Coordination Group (ICG) reached agreement on the essence of the proposal that they intend to forward to the NTIA (via the ICANN Board). Some light copy editing remains to be done, and then the final text is expected to be approved by the ICG this week. The ICG’s proposal incorporates proposals from the three operational communities: Names (proposal prepared by the ICANN CWG-Stewardship group), Numbers (proposal prepared by the CRISP Team established by the RIRs), and Protocol Parameters (proposal prepared by the IETF ianaplan working group). The Names part of the proposal depends on accountability changes from the ICANN CCWG-Accountability group, which have not been completed.
The CCWG-Accountability has converged on a “Sole Designator” model for making the ICANN Board accountable to the community, having discussed several other models in the past months. The sole designator model means that the ICANN community as a whole will have the power to appoint and recall or replace ICANN Directors. The power to appoint, recall and replace Directors appears to be sufficient to provide all the community powers that were requested by the CWG-Stewarship. The CCWG hopes to publish a proposal for public comments in mid November 2015, and to have a final proposal ready for transmission to the NTIA by late January 2016.
After the NTIA receives the proposals from the ICG and CCWG, the NTIA will require some time to review the proposals and associated amendments to the ICANN Bylaws, and the US Congress will also have time for review before the plan is approved by the NTIA.
The current NTIA contract with ICANN expires in September 2016, having been extended for 12 months from the precious expiry date. If the CCWG meets their target, then the transition may indeed be ready for implementation in September 2016.