ICANN 47 fellows

ICANN 47 fellows at the Nkosi Albert Luthuli International Convention Centre, Durban, South Africa, 19th July 2013

What is an ICANN fellowship and who are the fellowships for?

The Fellowship Program provides a grant of support to individuals who are members of the Internet community and have not previously been able to participate in ICANN processes and constituent organizations. In some cases, continued limited support is provided to those who have previously participated but need the opportunity to implement an agenda pertinent to a particular meeting (and still meet program criteria). This is a means tested program. Recipients are expected to actively contribute to ICANN processes and be a part of the next generation of ICANN leadership.

How are the fellowships awarded?

Fellowships are awarded by an independent selection committee based on a mix of criteria including applicant experience and references, geographic proximity to meeting, receipt of past fellowships.

Due to financial limitations ICANN may not be able to provide fellowships for all qualified applicants. In the case of a dispute or similar applications final decisions will be made by the fellowships committee.

Who may apply for and be awarded a fellowship?

  • The programme is targeted at individuals new to the ICANN environment from government, the ccTLD community, academic, civil and business constituents as well as non-profits, who are NOT involved in or associated with other ICANN supported travel programmes.
    • Successful applicants will have demonstrated:
      • Ability to utilize the experiences gained from the fellowship to become a part of the next generation of ICANN leadership
      • A role or interest in the Internet space
      • An interest in contributing to:
        • ICANN policy development processes.
        • The ICANN fellowship alumni network.
        • A leadership role in stimulating local interest in ICANN.
        • An ICANN supporting organization or advisory committee.

Current Program Status:

The following individuals have been selected to participate in the ICANN 47 Public Meeting in Durban, South Africa this July 14-18 2013.

  • Alejandro Jacobo Acosta Alamo – Venezuela – Academic and LACNIC member
  • Farzaneh Badiei – Iran – Internet Governance Forum Secretariat
  • Ulkar Bayramova – Azerbaijan – Academic and At Large
  • Artak Barseghyan – Armenia – Government
  • Andrew Rarumae – Solomon Islands – Business – member ccNSO
  • Kadian Davis – Jamaica – Academic – member NCSG and NCUC
  • Patricia Marie Thérèse Gnilane Senghor – Senegal – End User
  • Adrian Quesada Rodriguez – Costa Rica – Academic
  • Mwendwa Kivuva – Kenya – Civil Society and Business, Registrar
  • Oleg Demidov – Russia – Not For Profit
  • Etuate Cocker – Tonga – Academic
  • Dejan Djukic – Serbia – Not For Profit
  • Eddy Kayihura Mabano – Rwanda – Business
  • João Caribé – Brazil – Not For Profit
  • Mamadou LO – Senegal – End User and Afrinic member
  • Heba Sayed – Egypt – Civil Society
  • Maritza Yesenia Aguero Miñano – Peru – Government
  • Karel Douglas – Trinidad and Tobago – Government
  • Gul-e Rana – Pakistan – Academic
  • Amir Qayyum – Pakistan – Academic
  • Paul Muchene – Kenya – Business
  • Sarah Kiden – Uganda – Academic
  • Tuhaise Robert – Uganda – Academic
  • Asteway Shoarega Negash – Ethiopia – Academic
  • Olevie Kouami – Togo – Not For Profit – NPOC
  • Claudine Sugira – Rwanda – Not For Profit
  • Mona Melhem El Achkar – Lebanon – Academic
  • Don Peduru Pradeep Eranga Samararathna – Sri Lanka – Not For Profit
  • Carlos Alberto Villaseñor – Costa Rica – Not For Profit and ccTLD member

The first African Internet Governance Summer School held at Hotel 64 Gordon in Durban kicked off on 9th July 2013 with an introductory dinner. The diversity of participants, presenters and facilitators across Africa and the world was amazing.

Presenters with rich knowledge on Internet Governance were lined up from NEPAD, ICANN (NCUC), Afrinic, APC, Afilias, CGI.br, .ZADNA, University of Aarhus, and University of Zuric among others.

On day two, participants volunteered to role-play by belonging to different stakeholder groups of either Civil society, Government, Media, Private sector, Academia, and Technical community, where they were expected to develop a policy document of an IG topic of their choice. During plenary, the stakeholder groups worked hard to undo the policy documents of the opposing side until consensus was reached on the policy documents presented by each stakeholder group. The moderators and Chairman were keen to control the Stakeholders who had heated debates.

Participants of the Internet Governance School

Participants of the African Internet Governance School

The networking opportunity for the school was great with participants mingling freely and exchanging ideas, information, and lessons learned on IG issues from their respective regions.

The IG school came to a close on 12th July with participants presented beautiful certificates, and facilitators awarded tokens of appreciation. The event could not be complete without the Closing Dinner Sponsored by APC and NCUC held at Spiga d’Oro, 200 Florida Road, just near our hotel  Florida Park.

Internet Governance Forum (IGF) in Kenya is very mature, with like 5 past events. including hosting the east Africa, Africa, and world IGF.

Lessons learned.

Other countries across the world wonder how Kenya has made it. I have had others say they are waiting for government to start their local IGF initiatives. Government and business do not sponsor the event but always shows up to defend themselves because they are usually the punching bag at the events. Nobody would sponsor an event where they are put under scrutiny.

It’s usually a hectic process arranging the IGF, with totally no funding, but we always find ourselves exceeding expectations. How do we do it?

Local participation from like minded individuals and enthusiasm is all that counts. And a little donation from members of the IGF working group, as we have done in 2013.


If your country has no national Internet Governance initiative, just form a network of like-minded
individuals and brainstorm on how to convene one. The twist is the Internet Governance Forum should be before your regional Internet Governance Forum, and the continental Internet Governance Forum so that you can use the deliberations at the national level to feed into the regional, continental and world agenda.


Domain transfer policy

KENIC has a very good mechanism for domain transfers between registrars. The process is as simple as 123. The domain owner aproaches the registrar of choice, and decides to transfer in, the registrar then puts an online request to the competitor to transfer out. If he refuses, there is a despute committee than can arbitrate. Of course the big players are the hardest to transfer out of, and also some quacks will never transfer a domain at all. This is an issue of ethics.

It is illogical to transfer an expired domain. You have to renew it first.

If you have paid for domain renewal and it has not been renewed, then you have been scammed. You can take the issue with KENIC desputes committee.

KENIC domain pricing

The KENIC pricing has been discussed at lengths. I used to advocate lower prices, but since I became an insider, I now know better. Look at the price of .x xx domain. At $60 translating at about KES4500 with more than 100,000, domains already booked, that’s $6M per year, while .org and .com costs KES800, enjoying millions of subscribers, thus giving them economies of scale. You will realise that KENIC survives on a shoe string budget. If you look at their balance sheets, you can’t help but pity them. According to this presentation by Kemibaro, .ke domains are not overpriced http://www.slideshare.net/kemibaro/kenya-network-information-centre-kenic-marketing-plan-for-201011

We only have paltry 30,000 .ke domains.

At some quarters, its has been argued that personal .me.ke domain should be given out for free for the first year. Maybe even .sc.ke and .ne.ke. I think that would be a brilliant marketing strategy, then go back to 500bob per year thereafter.

Anybody advocating for lowering of .ke prices should also at the same time come up with a survival tactic for KENIC. How they will pay their staff and maintain the servers.

I would suggest that KENIC start offering hosting, colocation, consultancy, and such related services. But again such divergence might bring about conflict of interest.

Barrack Otieno, hit the nail directly on the head when he declared, ‘ask not what KENIC has done for you, but what you have done for KENIC’. As registrars we are always faced with the choice of whether to give our clients a ccTLD or gTLD. Most of us opt for gTLD because we are saving some few cents. After doing a market survey, I realised that most established registrar charge the same amount for either gTLD or ccTLD. We need concerted effort and willingness by the registrar to convince clients to take our .ke ccTLD, only then, shall we prosper as a registry

We Kenyans should start feeling proud of our ‘identity’. I think the patriotic card can be played well to convince people to take our local domains. The marking strategy of ‘zingine ni COMmon’ was very good. It should be revived. We should also convince our politicians to take .ke domain when they are launching their campaign websites. In that way, the population will be exposed to the .ke brand.

Register .co.ke .or.ke domains at KES950, use coupon code 950.

The most affordable .ke domains in the world. Register .ke domain from transworldafrica.com

The Kenya Network Information Center (KENIC) lowered domain registration fees of some domain. I was vexed since they left the .co.ke and .or.ke prefixes in the cold, but all the same Transworld computer Channels got recognition from Business daily Africa

Here is the post made to Skunkworks


Well done Kenic.

But you have thought this out from the wrong perspective, and got all priorities wrong. You have subsidized for the rich, and left the poor. Surely, who can afford a domain more? A government institution (.go.ke), an educational institution (.ac.ke), or an individual .co.ke .ne.ke)? You are working against all the principles of Robin Hood

“KENIC Stealing from the poor, giving to the rich”

KENIC, do you know how many people opt to register .com, .org, and .net domains because the price of .ke is NOT within reach? I understand that about 80% of .ke domains come from .co.ke, and Kenic is not ready to loose that revenue, as it is self sustaining, but if the cost of .co.ke domains is lowered, you will achieve 100,000 domains within several years, and your revenue stream will still be excellent due to the volumes.

I think KENIC’S, greediness has been its own undoing. Our company has registered hundreds of websites, and only a handful are .ke because the clients, who are usually young .COMS securing their digital space are put off at the obscene local domains pricing, opting for the cheaper gTLD.

Was Kenic’s initial mandate “PROFIT MAKING”, and why are they masquarading with a holy .OR.KE domain name? KENIC’s initial aim was “to institute a local non-profit organization to manage and operate the .KE ccTLD.”

Why have you deviated from it?

Register .ke domain from transworldafrica.com