Bonjour! Welcome to ICANN’s 66th Public Meeting, which is being held in Montréal, Canada. ICANN’s last Public Meeting held in Canada, ICANN45 in Toronto, was back in 2012. Quite a lot has changed since then.
ICANN Public Meetings are a vital part of the multistakeholder process. Much of the work we do happens digitally, whether it’s over email, in a Zoom call, or through public comments. These meetings give us an opportunity to interact face-to-face and engage in an open, public discourse over some of the most pressing issues facing ICANN and the wider Internet governance ecosystem.
ICANN66 is our Annual General Meeting (AGM), the third and final public meeting of the calendar year. The longest of the three meetings, the AGM showcases ICANN’s work to a broader global audience. As with previous AGMs, we’ll host two Public Forums, as well as our open question-and-answer session with ICANN org’s Executive Team.
The full meeting schedule is available here. I encourage everyone, no matter how long you’ve been a part of the community, to attend at least one session that is outside of your comfort zone. We all have something valuable to contribute to every dialogue, regardless of the subject matter at hand.
The AGM is an important opportunity to introduce new stakeholders to the critical work the community conducts. The multistakeholder model’s strength lies in ensuring that all voices are heard. To accomplish this, we must ensure that new voices join and express their viewpoints. So, to the many veterans and long-term members, I encourage you to bring in new community members and help get them ready for the days ahead.
Preparing for an ICANN Public Meeting is always a daunting task. There’s no end to the number of issues and conversations that are actively occurring within the community. One of my top suggestions for those attending, either in-person or remotely, is to download the most recent ICANN CEO Report to the Board. These reports are an excellent overview of what each ICANN org department is actively working on and provides a great wealth of information on a range of issues. I also recommend reading ICANN Board Director Maarten Botterman’s preview of the Montréal Board Workshop.
As the ICANN community travels from the far corners of the world to convene at the Montréal Convention Center, it’s important to remember how far we’ve come as an institution, and the progress we’ve made together. In 2012, the New Generic Top-Level Domain (gTLD) Program was our focus. Today, we’re working to tackle Universal Acceptance (UA), New gTLD Subsequent Procedures, and the future of auction proceeds. As we arrive in Montréal to start our work, keep in mind the purpose of these meetings and the impact they’ve had on the constantly-evolving Internet governance ecosystem.
I have no doubt that this will be an incredibly productive week. As always, my team and I will be on the ground to support you, so please contact any one of us if there’s something we can do.