Internet Governance

Internet Governance / Featured Blogs

Could IP Addressing Benefit from the Introduction of Competitive Suppliers?

An article written by Paul Wilson, Director General of Asia Pacific Network Information Centre (APNIC), and Geoff Huston, Senior Internet Research Scientist at APNIC. "In recent months proposals have been made for the introduction of competition into the system of allocation of IP addresses. In particular, calls have been made for new IP address registries to be established which would compete with the existing Regional Internet address Registries (RIRs). Specific proposals have been made by Houlin Zhao of the ITU-T and by Milton Mueller of the Internet Governance Project, both of which propose that the ITU itself could establish such a registry group, operating as a collection of national registries." ...It would appear that part of the rationale for these proposals lies in the expectation that the introduction of competition would naturally lead to outcomes of "better" or "more efficient" services the address distribution function. This article is a commentary on this expectation, looking at the relationship between a competitive supply framework and the role of address distribution, and offering some perspective on the potential outcomes that may be associated with such a scenario for IP addresses, or indeed for network addresses in general. more

The Ultimate Solution to Internet Governance: Let ITU and ICANN compete

Controversies over ICANN led to the creation of the Working Group on Internet Governance, but so far there have been few specific proposals for change. The Internet Governance Project has entered that breach with a new policy paper: "What to Do About ICANN: A Proposal for Structural Reform." The proposal, by Hans Klein and myself, proposes three clean, clear but probably controversial solutions to the criticisms that have been made of ICANN. more

Why Restricted TLDs Should Not Be Gatecrashed

In recent weeks, thousands of what ICANN describes as "questionable" registrations have been activated... Let me illustrate: Mr. ICANN decides to hold a party. He has decided that he only wants to ask some of his professional friends to come, so they are asked to bring their party invites with them to prove they've been invited, because poor Mr. ICANN has had trouble before with people gatecrashing his parties. At a sunrise party he'd held a few years ago, all kinds of people had gatecrashed and no-one had asked to see their invites and it was dreadful. So Mr. ICANN hires a bouncer to stand guard at the front door of his house. The bouncer, Johnny Registry, assures Mr. ICANN that no-one will get in without an invite... more

The Net-Net on Dot Net

ICANN has posted its suggested .net agreement [PDF]. The new draft puts the ICANN Board and the Names Council firmly in control of the registry's future, and represents a substantial change to the existing registry contracts. No one gave ICANN the power to do this, and it is strange that no approval by anyone -- including the US Dept of Commerce -- is being sought to make this happen. ICANN is taking the occasion of the .net rebid to restructure its entire relationship to the world. more

Internet Governance: Analogue Solutions to Digital Problems

This is an overview of the booklet, "Internet Governance: Issues, Actors and Divides," recently published by DiploFoundation and the Global Knowledge Partnership. "Internet Governance is not a simple subject. Although it deals with a major symbol of the DIGITAL world, it cannot be handled with a digital - binary logic of true/false and good/bad. Instead, the subject's many subtleties and shades of meaning and perception require an ANALOGUE approach, covering a continuum of options and compromises." Update: This article was reposted with additional information and a new title. more

Whither WGIG?

Now, I don't like the word "whither" any more than you do. But this Reuters article was circulating yesterday and it seemed to call for a "whither." It's a short story, so let's do a close reading. "A U.N.-sponsored panel aims to settle a long-running tug of war for control of the Internet by July and propose solutions to problems such as cyber crime and email spam, panel leaders said on Monday." We're going to decide what "internet governance" is by July?  more

Creating a Police State From the Ashes of the Internet

Former CIA Director, George J. Tenet recently called for measures to safeguard the United States against internet-enabled attacks. "I know that these actions will be controversial in this age when we still think the Internet is a free and open society with no control or accountability, but ultimately the Wild West must give way to governance and control." Mr. Tenet seems about as confused about the internet as the ITU... more

Internet to ITU: Stay Away from My Network

An ITU document entitled "Beyond Internet Governance" crossed my desk earlier this week. Given that I had absolutely nothing better to do, I decided to give it a read. The audacity of the ITU Secretariat is nothing less than shocking. It has been a long while since I read such a self-serving, narrow-minded and inaccurate document. The backbone of the ITU's contention rests on the premise that something called the Next Generation Network and the contention that this network will act as one big bug fix for all the problems created by current inter-networking technology. more

Internet Management and National Security: Time for a Federal Action Plan

Former CIA Director George Tenet recently gave a speech highlighting the need for federal action on internet management in order to protect national security. As reported by the online edition of Government Executive, Mr. Tenet explained that, "greater government regulation of the Internet and telecommunications networks is needed in order to guard against terrorist attacks." more

WGIG Too Focused on Negative Side of the Internet?

The following is a report by Susan Crawford at the ICANN meeting in Cape Town where a workshop was held yesterday for increasing awareness and understanding of United Nation's World Summit on the Information Society (WSIS) and issues that directly impact ICANN. "WSIS" is defined as a process in which governments intend to address a broad range of international legal, regulatory, economic, and policy issues related to the Internet. Some governments have proposed that an intergovernmental organization be responsible for "Internet governance," a phrase that remains undefined and some consider to include and/or mean the administration and coordination of the domain name system (DNS). more