ICANN, the folks who manage the coordination of the DNS and Internet addressing, have opened their Strategic Plan for July 2010 to June 2013 to public comment. This Plan was first presented at the ICANN meeting that was held in Seoul in October, and outlines four areas of work for ICANN: preserve DNS security and stability; promote competition, trust, choice, and innovation; excel in Internet Assigned Numbers Authority (IANA) and other core operations; and, contribute to shaping a healthy Internet eco-system.
This is all part of ICANN’s multi-stakeholder, bottom-up approach to Internet governance. A laudable approach for sure, and one that, in my opinion, democratizes some of ICANN’s internal decision-making. It is, in fact, ICANN’s carrying out of Section 7 of its Affirmation of Commitments which calls for ICANN to “adhere to…responsive consultation procedures that provide detailed explanations for basis of decisions”.
ICANN has been around for about 11 years now. In that time, the Internet has changed dramatically. It has become a resource for everybody with access, regardless of whether or not we can attend ICANN meetings in Seoul, live in an urban centre in a developed nation or in sub-Saharan Africa.
It is a resource and a tool that can be used for business, family communications, political activism, and many, many more things. It truly is one of very few resources available for the entire world, and, in my opinion, it is only right that its users have the opportunity to have their say in how it is going to work in the future.
Specifically, ICANN is looking for responses to the following two questions:
- What should be the three to five year high level strategic objectives for each of the four areas of work?
- What would be the specific metrics for each of the four areas of work?
You can find the Strategic Plan public consultation here. You have until January 21, 2010 to have your say. I know I plan to. Do you?