Country Code Registry Managers Furious With ICANN’s NomCom

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The ccNSO which represents country code domain registries within ICANN such as .fr, .uk and many others is furious with ICANN’s NomCom.

In a letter dated September 29th 2017 the ccNSO outlines the issues they have. They’re pretty clear.

The Nomcom has chosen to appoint someone to the ccNSO council whose profile is at odds with the CCNSO council’s selection criteria. According to the country code managers NomCom appointees should not be linked to country code operators AND choosing someone whose ccTLD is already represented on the council is a double whammy.

The discussion from the recent ccNSO Council call’s records covers the background and rationale behind this very clearly:

In November 2008 the NomCom appointed an employee of a ccTLD manager that had no representative on the ccNSO Council at the time of appointment. Independent of the qualities of the appointee, the ccNSO Council decided to send a letter to the Board (see: to convey the view of the ccNSO Council on the role of NomCom appointees and the role of NomCom in seeking and appointing Councillors. In addition, in order to assist the NomCom, the ccNSO Council developed criteria for suitable candidates.

In 2012, the Chair of the NomCom at that time confirmed that the NomCom would be “avoiding any member already belonging to the cc management participating in the cc constituency” (Chair of the NomCom email to Chair of the ccNSO). In addition, the Chair of the NomCom 2013 requested input on additional requirements from a ccNSO perspective for appointing Councillors to the ccNSO Council. The Council re-iterated the earlier criteria: “To maintain the current balance the ccNSO Council strongly advises the Nominating Committee not to appoint members who are directly or indirectly associated with a ccTLD manager (either as a Board member, employee or advisor) nor Board member or employee of a Regional Organisation” (

The 2017 prospective Nominating Committee appointee to the ccNSO Council is a Board Member of the Canadian Internet Registry Association (CIRA). The proposed appointment fails to comply with the above quoted long standing criteria. Our concern is aggravated by the additional fact that the relevant ccTLD manager is already represented on the ccNSO Council by a Member unanimously elected by ccNSO members from that particular region.

Independent of the qualities of the recently NomCom appointed Council member, the ccNSO Council expresses its strong disappointment in the decision of NomCom that despite its earlier assurances it has appointed a person who is directly related with a ccTLD manager, which in addition already has a seat on the ccNSO Council. The Council re-iterates its grave concern that this appointment does not respect NomCom’s role and mission to add independent people to the ccNSO Council. In addition, the ccNSO urges NomCom to indicate how they intend to assure that such an appointment will be avoided in future.

THE CCNSO COUNCIL RESOLVED TO request the Chair to draft a letter to the Chair of the Nominating Committee, the ICANN Board, and the appointee informing them of Council’s views and that the proposed appointment is unacceptable to the ccNSO Council. This letter is to be adopted by Council before it is send.

Here’s the letter which was sent to the NomCom as well as the ICANN Board:


I’m not sure what will happen next, but it looks like the ccNSO is flatly rejecting the appointment and aren’t open to discussing it further. Can the NomCom undo an appointment? Is there another candidate who does meet the criteria?



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One Response to Country Code Registry Managers Furious With ICANN’s NomCom

  1. Thomas Barrett October 2, 2017 at 4:24 pm #

    As a member of the NomCom the last two years, I can offer a perspective here.

    The fact that ccNSO provided specific advice to the NomCom back in 2012 never came up in the past two years I served.

    First of all, the NomCom is structured so that it has close to zero institutional knowledge. By design, each new NomCom is shared very little information from previous NomCom’s.

    The NomCom publishes the criteria for candidates every year. see

    So, this means if one of the groups that the NomCom nominates candidates for, has some specific advice for evaluation critieria, they would need to provide it anew every year.

    The ICANN Board does this on an annual basis. I don’t recall any of the other groups (GNSO, ccNSO, ALAC) doing so in the last two years. I also recall that the NomCom, at least once, specifically requested these groups to provide advice, but none did.

    I don’t know how this year’s issue will play out. But one of the lessons here is that each of the groups involved (GNSO, ccNSO and ALAC) should take responsibility for providing the NomCom advice every year at the ICANN Annual Meeting.

    Finally, here is plug for everyone in the ICANN community to provide feedback on the NomCom!

    The NomCom is currently undergoing an ICANN Review process by an Independent Examiner, whose working group I am the Chair of.

    If you have ideas on how to improve the NomCom, please complete our survey here:

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