The complete definition, mandate ans scope of the Independent Objector can be found in the last version of the Applicant Guidebook (the one I use is dated11 January 2012), page 156, point 3.2.5.
Basically, the IO is limited to filing two types of objections:
- Limited Public Interest objections;
- Community objections.
"The IO does not act on behalf of any particular persons or entities, but acts solely in the best interests of the public who use the global Internet."
Allain Pellet is French.
ICANN announcement can be found here.