Friday, 24 August 2018 10:23

Former auDA director offers apology for 'cartel' remark

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Former auDA director Josh Rowe has issued an apology for comments made last month, in which he characterised the means used for mass recruitment of members to the organisation that manages the .au namespace as being "potential cartel behaviour".

In the apology, published in the Australian Financial Review on Friday, Rowe said: "In communications on 24 and 26 July, I suggested that auDA and certain of its officers and staff engaged in criminal cartel conduct in relation to recent applications for auDA membership.

"I had no basis for making these allegations. I hereby retract the allegations and apologise to auDA and its officers, staff and members for any offence, harm or damage caused by the allegations."

A statement issued by auDA chair Chris Leptos said the apology had been accepted.

"Good people, with good intentions and driving passion, will inevitably disagree on some important matters when it comes to Internet governance," Leptos said.

"However, Rowe stepped over the line of civil debate that is at the heart of the multi-stakeholder model."

auDA has gone through some internal turmoil over the past few months, with some members seeking to throw out three directors. Their bid failed at a special general meeting held on 27 July.

In June, one member, Jim Stewart, the chief executive of StewArt Media, called for a motion of no-confidence in chief executive Cameron Boardman and the sacking of directors Leptos, Suzanne Ewart and Sandra Hook.

The board is in the process of attempting to meet the demands of a Federal Government review issued in April that found its management framework was no longer fit for purpose. A new framework has been proposed and has to be put in place by April 2020, as per the government's demands.

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Sam Varghese

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Sam Varghese has been writing for iTWire since 2006, a year after the site came into existence. For nearly a decade thereafter, he wrote mostly about free and open source software, based on his own use of this genre of software. Since May 2016, he has been writing across many areas of technology. He has been a journalist for nearly 40 years in India (Indian Express and Deccan Herald), the UAE (Khaleej Times) and Australia (Daily Commercial News (now defunct) and The Age). His personal blog is titled Irregular Expression.

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