U.S. Commerce Department's National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) took a historic step today announcing "its intent to transition key Internet domain name functions to the global multistakeholder community."
"The timing is right to start the transition process," said Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Communications and Information Lawrence E. Strickling. "We look forward to ICANN convening stakeholders across the global Internet community to craft an appropriate transition plan."
NTIA has informed ICANN that it expects that in the development of the proposal, ICANN will work collaboratively with the directly affected parties, including the Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF), the Internet Architecture Board (IAB), the Internet Society (ISOC), the Regional Internet Registries (RIRs), top level domain name operators, VeriSign, and other interested global stakeholders.
"Like all organizations, ICANN wants to achieve autonomy and strengthen itself," writes Syracuse University Professor, Milton Mueller. "Countervailing forces in the Internet community will be needed to keep it in check."
Update: Monday 17 March 2014 – Following is part of the statement from ITU Secretary-General, Dr Hamadoun I. Touré
"I welcome the announcement from the National Telecommunication and Information Administration of the United States Department of Commerce, of 14 March, 2014, regarding its intent to transition IANA functions to the global community, including full support for a multistakeholder model of Internet governance free from regulation by any one government or inter-governmental organization.
I would like to reiterate what I have said many times: the Internet is a global public good and therefore all nations and peoples should have an equal say in its running and development. I commend the US government's announcement about changing oversight arrangements of the management of critical internet resources and I believe this development will lead to improved and productive cooperation between the telecommunications and internet communities."
Updates: UPDATED Mar 17, 2014 3:04 PM PDT
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