Internet Governance

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Inconsistencies in ICANN New TLD Application Fees

In preparation for Monday's Joint Applicant Support (JAS) Working Group call, I spent some time reviewing various documents in connection with what are ICANN's actual costs in reviewing top-level domain name applications. One thing that caught my attention was the following metric in Rod Beckstrom's most recent CEO Monthly One Page Metric Report. more»

Internet and Self-Governance? An Example

At the Government Roundtable meeting in Amsterdam on 12 September RIPE NCC presented on her results on auditing Local Internet Registries (LIRs) and on the policy process concerning certification of her members. If this showed something to the world it is that cooperation with governments and law enforcement agencies (LEAs) pays off and self-governance can work. How did this come about? more»

The Invisible Hand vs. the Public Interest in IPv4 Address Distribution

In the efforts to promote the public interest over that of monied interests in Internet Governance few issues are clear cut. One issue that has recently been discussed is that of requiring a "needs assessment" when transferring IP addresss blocks from one organisation to another (in the same or different RIR regions) or indeed when requesting IP resources from your friendly RIR. more»

.ECO Top-Level Domain in Danger?

I once wrote about about the legal right objections on and with all these new generic Top-Level Domain (gTLD) announcements, I find it interesting to check if an application could be blocked by paragraph of the latest Draft Applicant Guidebook. more»

Who Wrote Those ICANN Papers, Anyway: The European Commission or the Government of Iran?

The most notable thing about the EC Papers on ICANN, which were leaked by Kieren McCarthy last week, is that they are designed to completely subordinate ICANN as an institution. We have not seen such a comprehensive attack by a government on ICANN since the World Summit on the Information Society. One can infer that this is payback for the Board's decision to not treat the EC's views, expressed in its Governmental Advisory Committee (GAC), as binding instructions rather than as nonbinding advice. more»

ICANN's "Unelected" Crisis

The leaked release of the European Commission's working papers on the future of Top Level Domains highlights the impending collision between adherents of the present "multistakeholder" ICANN governance model, and an ever longer list of national governments who challenge that model. At the core of the controversy is the question of how ICANN can claim legitimacy in the DNS world when none of its Directors or Officers are elected. Even worse, its only answer, when challenged legally, is that it is responsive to its contract with an agency of the U.S. Government... more»

Internet: Government Dominance or Governance?

In an age where the world has gone global in many forms and guises, the political attention is more and more focussed on national, populist issues, that arise from fear for the unknown. I can't deny it: the future undoubtedly contains many uncertainties. This usually comes with a general public that's afraid and in fear of things they cannot oversee. Thus it is easily aroused by a populist leader who feeds on this fear and throws flammable material on the already smouldering fire. In a time where leadership is called for, it seems lacking. The Internet governance discussion demands visionary leadership on a cross border level and it needs it soon. more»

Underneath the Hood: Ownership vs. Stewardship of the Internet

As is well known to most CircleID readers - but importantly, not to most other Internet users - in March 2011, ICANN knowingly and purposefully embraced an unprecedented policy that will encourage filtering, blocking, and/or redirecting entire virtual neighborhoods, i.e., "top-level domains" (TLDs). Specifically, ICANN approved the creation of the ".XXX" suffix, intended for pornography websites. Although the owner of the new .XXX TLD deems a designated virtual enclave for morally controversial material to be socially beneficial for the Internet, this claim obfuscates the dangers such a policy creates under the hood. more»

Washington Post: ICANN Departures After Web Suffix Vote Draws Criticism. How Damaged is ICANN?

ICANN Chairman and other departures after the board's vote to approve the New generic Top-Level Domains (gTLDs) in Singapore draw criticism, reports The Washington Post. Shortly after the vote, Peter Dengate Thrush joined a New gTLD Group which stands to greatly benefit directly from this vote on the program he led on for nearly 3 years. This appears to have caused grave damage to ICANN's credibility internationally drawing international Press and Governments criticism over conflict of interest. more»

ICANN Finds Its Voice

I think we are finally getting somewhere: ICANN is no longer fluttering flusteredly whenever a lobbying group sends a nastygram over the transom. Case in point: a Association of National Advertisers (ANA) that arrived a few days ago, full of bombast and muscle-flexing, demanding that ICANN immediately stop the new gTLD program until a long list of demands from the ANA were met, or else the ANA would be forced to take some Very Scary Actions... more»