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Why I Voted to Sell .ORG

Hi, I'm Richard. I've been around the Internet for a while. I work for Cisco now, and used to lead security for Firefox. I've published a few RFCs and served on the Internet Engineering Steering Group (the board of the IETF). I was a co-founder of Let's Encrypt and I currently serve on its board. I care about the Internet, and I care about nonprofits. more

Why Colombia Is About to Make a Colossal Mistake With .CO

Ten years ago, the most effective branding exercise the internet registry market has ever seen began. And to celebrate the anniversary, its owner is going to strangle it. At the ICANN meeting in Montreal this month, the Government of Colombia booked a meeting room, prepared a Powerpoint presentation and invited representatives of the world's largest registry operators to attend. Once there, they were offered a rare and valuable opportunity: to take over running of the .co registry. more

The .ORG Sale Is a Radical Departure That Puts the Internet at Risk

It can be hard to take a side. Especially when you are with a big organization. I know, I used to work for the United Nations and ICANN. Neutrality is a huge part of that work. Your role is not to take a stand; it's to create the space for other people to take stands. To create and protect a neutral platform. That's what we all thought the Internet Society (ISOC) was doing for us by running .ORG. more

Showing our Ethos with .ORG

I recently stepped into a new role as Chief Purpose Officer of Ethos Capital, a specialized investment firm focused on helping companies drive growth and transformation through technology. In doing so, we are committed to operating ethically, responsibly, and in the best interests of all stakeholders, including employees, customers, vendors and the broader community. more

Advancing Cyberstability: Protect the Public Internet Core and Improve Cyber Hygiene

The Paris Peace Forum (PPF), established by the French president Emanual Macron, was picked by the Global Commission for Stability in Cyberspace (GCSC) to launch its final report "Advancing Cyberstability" for good reasons: The Internet isn't just a purely technical issue with some political implications anymore. On the eve of the 2020s, the management of cyberspace is a global problem, a matter of international security, a question of war or peace. more

Thoughts of an ICANN Public Interest Stakeholder on the Intended Sale of the .ORG Registry

The announcement of the intended Internet Society (ISOC) sale of the .ORG registry to Ethos Capital has caused a lot of frustration and anger while raising a lot of questions.
It's more than just about the money. It's more than who is behind it. It's about the soul of the DNS and the ICANN community with its multi-stakeholder model. Let's remember that the Public Interest Registry (PIR) was created, with ISOC as its sole legal owner, to provide ISOC with the funds to operate and to run the registry more-or-less as a Social Business. more

The 5G Race in Reno

The past week in the 5G world was notable because of some major events in Reno in the 5G race to roll out the full 5G specifications known as Release 16. A set of seven major concurrent industry standards meetings were hosted there over five days last week. The metrics are indicative of who really participates in and shapes the rapidly emerging 5G platforms. more

Cybersecurity Standards Practices as Cyber Threats

One of the most embarrassing and pernicious realities in the world of cybersecurity is the stark reality that some industry cybersecurity standards practices are themselves cyber threats. How so? Most industry and intergovernmental standards bodies serve as means for assembling the constantly evolving collective knowledge of participant experts and package the resulting specifications and best practices as freely available online documents to a vast, diverse universe of users. more

A Better PIR Deal – Maintaining Trust Is Good Business

I run a business. For years I've been in the ICANN Business Constituency, holding a series of different positions including Chair. Suffice it to say, I'm absolutely ok with making money and generally speaking, letting markets work. I also care about NGOs. For years our firm worked with PIR on the .NGO project. We got to see up close the role PIR has played as a supporter of NGOs online -- encouraging best practice, helping push out DNSSEC to a global audience, working on DNS abuse issues, supporting the sector. more

The Early History of Usenet, Part V: Authentication and Norms

We knew that Usenet needed some sort of management system, and we knew that that would require some sort of authentication, for users, sites, and perhaps posts. We didn't add any, though -- and why we didn't is an interesting story. The obvious solution was something involving public key cryptography, which we (the original developers of the protocol: Tom Truscott, the late Jim Ellis, and myself) knew about: all good geeks at the time had seen Martin Gardner's "Mathematical Games" column... more

Recognizing Lessons Learned From the First DNSSEC Key Rollover, a Year Later

A year ago, under the leadership of the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN), the internet naming community completed the first-ever rollover of the cryptographic key that plays a critical role in securing internet traffic worldwide. The ultimate success of that endeavor was due in large part to outreach efforts by ICANN and Verisign which, when coupled with the tireless efforts of the global internet measurement community, ensured that this significant event did not disrupt internet name resolution functions for billions of end users. more

The Early History of Usenet, Part VI: The Public Announcement

Our goal was to announce Usenet at the January, 1980 Usenix meeting. In those days, Usenix met at universities; it was a small, comaparatively informal organization, and didn't require hotel meeting rooms and the like. (I don't know just when Usenix started being a formal academic-style conference; I do know that it was no later than 1984, since I was on the program committee that year for what would later be called the Annual Technical Conference.) more

Starlink Making a Space Grab

SpaceNews recently reported that Elon Musk and his low-orbit space venture Starlink have filed with the International Telecommunications Union (ITU) to launch an additional 30,000 broadband satellites in addition to the 11,927 now in the planning stages. This looks like a land grab and Musk is hoping to grab valuable orbital satellite paths to keep them away from competitors. more

The Early History of Usenet, Part IV: Implementation and User Experience

To understand some of our implementation choices, it's important to remember two things. First, the computers of that era were slow. The Unix machine at UNC's CS department was slower than most timesharing machines even for 1979 – we had a small, slow disk, a slow CPU, and – most critically – not nearly enough RAM. Duke CS had a faster computer – they had an 11/70; we had an 11/45 -- but since I was doing the first implementation, I had to use what UNC had. (Log in remotely? more

IGF2019 Observation: Compare Chancellor Merkel's Digital Sovereignty with Chinese and U.S. Version

The 2019 UN IGF is right now being held in Berlin and entering the last day. There has been a wide range of exciting discussions. It is a huge step forward that this year's IGF has been able to bring a plethora of topics together under a framework of thinking after the efforts done by the UN Secretary-General António Guterres' High-Level Panel on Digital Cooperation (The Age of Digital Interdependence) and by German scholars' engagement with all the stakeholders... more

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