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CIRA’s statement of purpose is set out in section 6 of its articles. It currently is the following:  

The purposes of the corporation are:

  1. to act as the registry for the .CA Internet domain;
  2. to provide professional registry services comparable to other major national and international Internet registries;
  3. to develop, carry out and/or support any other Internet-related activities in Canada; and
  4. to do all such other things as are incidental or conducive to the attainment of the above purposes.

As a corporation under the Canada-Not-for-profit Corporations Act, CIRA has all the powers of a natural person and is not limited by what is set out in its statement of purpose. Nevertheless, the statement of purpose serves as a guide as to the activities of the organization.  

The language in CIRA’s statement of purpose was previously set out in CIRA’s Letters Patent, which was last amended in 2006.

Since that time, the domain name industry has evolved significantly. CIRA has expanded into new products and services beyond acting as the registry for the .CA Internet domain, and has implemented its Community Investment Program. To better reflect the organization’s mandate and current activities, CIRA’s board of directors has approved an update to CIRA’s statement of purpose.

The changes

The proposed changes to CIRA’s statement of purpose are as follows:

The purposes of the corporation are:

  1. to act as the registry for the .CA Internet domain;
  2. to provide professional registry, Domain Name System (DNS), and related services comparable to other major national and international Internet registries;
  3. to develop, carry out and/or support any other Internet-related activities in Canada that promote the good governance, development and use of the Internet for Canada; and
  4. to do all such other things as are incidental or conducive to the attainment of the above purposes.

Note there are no changes under item (a) and item (d). It is simply good governance practice and housekeeping to have them updated to reflect the underlying activities of the organization that have always been present and current activities of the organization that may have evolved significantly over time.

These proposed changes accomplish the following:

  • acknowledge that CIRA has operated the Domain Name System (DNS) since its inception as part of serving as the registry for the .CA Internet domain.
  • reflect that CIRA has for a number of years now, been providing professional registry services, DNS anycast and firewall services, and related services.  
  • provide more clarity regarding the Internet-related activities provided by CIRA. The term “Internet-related activities” is arguably very broad. The changes to section (c) narrow these activities and reflect those activities that CIRA participates in and leads in promoting the good governance, development and use of the Internet for Canada, both domestically and internationally. This includes CIRA’s work around building a better online Canada, such as supporting Canada’s IXPs, engagement in ICANN and policy conferences such as the Canadian Internet Governance Forum.

These updates to CIRA’s statement of purpose will not change the organization’s direction, but rather, will align our articles with our activities, priorities and the breadth of our work for the Canadian Internet, for consistency.

The process

At the board meeting last November, CIRA’s board of directors approved to update the statement of purpose to better reflect the organization’s mandate and current activities. The final step is for CIRA members to approve these changes at the Annual General Meeting (AGM) on September 25, 2019.

CIRA members will be voting on the following motion:

BE IT RESOLVED THAT the statement of the purpose of the Canadian Internet Registration Authority in the articles of the corporation be amended by deleting the current statement of the purpose of the corporation and inserting in its place the following:

The purposes of the corporation are:

  1. to act as the registry for the .CA Internet domain;
  2. to provide professional registry, Domain Name System (DNS), and related services;
  3. to develop, carry out and/or support Internet-related activities that promote the good governance, development and use of the Internet for Canada; and
  4. to do all such other things as are incidental or conducive to the attainment of the above purposes.

As a CIRA member, we want you to understand these changes so you can vote on the motion at the Annual General Meeting. Read our blog post for more information and email us at member.services@cira.ca or reach out on social media, on Twitter or Facebook to ask questions about these changes.