Chapter Formation Policies

Policy for Establishing New Chapters

1. Establishment of Chapters

Any Internet Society Global Member in good standing may submit to the Internet Society an application to form a Chapter.

If the application is approved, the Chapter will be granted a status of “In Formation”. During this time applicants recruit members, draft a set By-laws for the Chapter, and complete other such requirements as set forth by Internet Society procedures.

Upon receipt of the By-laws and other application requirements, the Internet Society will review the application and determine if Charter status is to be granted. If an application is rejected, applicants may appeal to the CEO and President of the Internet Society by submitting a written request (email is acceptable).

2. Purpose of Chapters

Chapters of the Internet Society are expected to serve the interests of a segment of the global Internet community in a manner consistent with the mission and principles of the Internet Society. Through a presence local to its community of interest, a Chapter focuses on issues and developments important to its community. A Chapter recognizes, honours, and uses the culture, customs, and language of its community. Every Chapter shall have an explicit statement of purpose.

3. Scope of Chapters

Chapters may be established on a non-exclusive basis to serve the needs of any specific, cohesive community of interest. Multiple Chapters serving overlapping communities are not permitted.

4. Funding of Chapters

Chapters are expected to establish their own source of funding. Permitted sources include the following:

    1. Chapters may establish a fee-based membership model, charging either or both individuals and organizations to participate in its activities. The fees may be structured according to the activities or paid according to a regular renewal schedule.
    2. Chapters may solicit funding or resources from local organizations or other sponsors to support its activities.
5. Public positions and statements

Specific officials of Chapters, acting on behalf of their Chapter, may make public statements and establish public positions as long as they meet the following requirements:

  1. They must advance the purposes of the Internet Society, which includes advancing the purposes of a Chapter in good standing.
  2. They must not be contrary to any position of the Internet Society.
  3. They must be prepared and presented in a professional manner.
  4. They must be clearly and unambiguously identified as originating from the Chapter of the Internet Society.
  5. It should be unlikely they will give rise to any significant legal or juridical liability.

Where there is any question or doubt regarding the appropriateness of a public position or statement, the Chapter is expected to consult with the Internet Society at least one week prior to its release or announcement. Chapters must notify the Internet Society no later than the same day of the release of any public position or statement.

6. Members

All individuals and organizations falling within the defined scope of the Chapter shall be eligible for membership without discrimination.

All members of a Chapter shall also be members of the Internet Society. Membership is not necessary, however, for participation in the activities of the Chapters.

The Chapter shall have at least 25 individual members none of whom are listed as one of the 25 members used by any currently active Chapter to get its Charter.

7. Liabilities

The Internet Society shall not be liable for any act or omission or incurred liability of any kind of any Chapter.

8. Organization

Chapters will be encouraged but not required to constitute themselves as not-for-profit corporate entities.

Chapters must have a set of By-Laws.

Chapters must have a fixed postal address.

Chapters must have a defined set of leadership roles for which they conduct regular elections to select individuals from their membership to serve. Such roles may be appointed for at most one year when the Chapter first receives its Charter. Such roles may have whatever title is customary to the segment of the community being served.

The roles must include at least the following:

  1. One person designated as the most senior of all the leaders. This role frequently has the title of Chairman or President.
  2. One person to be responsible for the administrative duties. This role frequently has the title of Secretary.
  3. If the Chapter has financial resources to manage there must be one person responsible for the financial duties. This role frequently has the title of Treasurer.

Chapters must meet any requirements set forth by Internet Society procedures by action of the Internet Society Membership Team, including but not limited to at most an annual review of its Charter and the annual submission of a financial report.

9. Activities

Chapter may undertake any activity reasonably related to and in furtherance of its purpose and the purpose and mission of Internet Society.