Analysis of IANA survey responses

Executive summary

During beginning of November 2014, Country Code Top Level Domain community (ccTLD community) was offered a survey to give guidance to the Cross Community Working Group regarding the transition of the IANA stewardship transition.
Over 100 ccTLDs submitted responses.

The Survey

IANA Organisation

Initially the community was asked how future IANA functions should be operated (Q4). Answers were relatively even through three answers:
  • 40% - As a separate, independent department within ICANN (functional separation)
  • 33% - As an integrated department within ICANN (as it is today)
  • 23% - As a separate organization from ICANN with its own directors (structural separation)

IANA Oversight

Question 5a and 5b enquired if there’s a need for external oversight mechanisms, replacing the transactional and the contractual oversight provided by NTIA's present role. During the webinars held to clarify any survey questions it became clear that question 5A and 5B, presented ambiguity. The Webinar (and subsequent emails) revealed confusion with respect to interpretation. Analysis of the answers combined with the written submissions indicated that those parties with explicit agreements with ICANN wanted some form of independent oversight mechanism whereas those ccTLD that do not have agreements with ICANN did not want any independent oversight mechanism external to their own processes.
Another central question (Q6) is what happens if a new oversight mechanism is to be established, replacing the oversight executed by the NTIA. Who should represent the ccTLD’s interest in such a mechanism?
Respondents showed support for ccNSO and the Regional Organisations performing such roles on behalf of the community. But comments were also vocal supporting that individual ccTLDs should represent themselves.
There were also some regional dissimilarities across the regions. Africa preferred Regional Organizations and Latin America was split evenly between Regional Organizations and support for ccNSO.

Further conclusions from the survey

  • Community confirmed that it is important to keep policy making functions separate from IANA functions.
  • Community confirmed (52%) that the ultimate authority for entries In the IANA database should be TLD managers
  • Generic (gTLD) and country code top level domains (ccTLD) should not be considered a single group (70%) when talking about IANA transition.
  • ccTLD’s should have an independent and binding appeal process if IANA operators fail to deliver, or if it abuses its position.
  • If IANA should fail to perform well or abuse its position, there should be clear consequences for the IANA operator (Q10).
  • In question 9, respondent confirmed (57%) that the ultimate authority for entries in the IANA database should be directed by ccTLD managers.

Near real time secure IANA updates

In Survey responses, there was a clear commitment to reinforce the authority of ccTLD Registry Manager (Q9) and the automation of IANA database updates (Q13):
  • Naming community confirm need of a fully automated end-to-end IANA database update function (74%) for change in name servers.
  • Naming community confirm need of a fully automated end-to-end IANA database update function (64%) for change in Admin or Technical Contacts.
  • Naming community confirm need of a fully automated end-to-end IANA database update function (63%) for change in other administrative tasks.
  • However for changes of the Registry Manager, sometimes known as the ‘Sponsoring Organisation’, the community is hesitant for a fully automated update services (No: 55%)

General comments

In question 14, there were 44 respondents who commented on what mechanisms, or processes, or arrangements that need to be included in the final proposal for IANA transition.
Of the 44 respondents, 19 made direct reference to a standard, fully transparent, appeals process for major decisions, i.e. reassignments etc.

Since responses in questions 15 & 16 were freely expressed, no attempt for summarizing is made here but can be seen by obtaining access to the raw survey data and graphs via this form.