Internet Governance

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The Borg in Us All: Is Resistance Futile?

One of the main roles played by science fiction is to portray fundamental issues and questions that face humanity long before they actually become relevant to our daily lives. We cannot always be sure of where our reality ends, and fiction begins. Star Trek storylines including Borgs are a good example. In the storyline, Borgs are part organic, part artificial and created eons ago, yet they seem to presage the challenges in our contemporary personal reality and challenges in the Internet's cyberspace. more

Stronger Pro-Growth International Policies Are Needed for the Internet, Says ICC

The International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) has announced that greater efforts to bring about better, more consultative global policy-making are needed to maximize the potential of the Internet to power future economic growth. ICC BASIS (Business Action to Support the Information Society) plans to use its presence at the 8th annual Internet Governance Forum (IGF), taking place in Bali, Indonesia, between 22-25 October, to call for attention to a greater collaboration between stakeholder groups and stronger pro-growth international policies in order to help the Internet retain its place as the world’s primary economic enabler. more

Experts Call for Caribbean to Make Its Voice Heard on Global Internet Governance

The internet has come to play a vital role in the social and economic development of the Caribbean. Yet, countries in the region are, in the main, relying heavily on external interests to make important decisions about the technical specifications and security of the technology and rules that impact how the Internet is governed. "We find that the Caribbean governments are abdicating their seats at the table in global fora where major decisions are made regarding the future of the Internet. more

Re-Booting Internet Governance: Resurgence of Ideas and Proposals

Milton Mueller reporting at IGP: At the recently concluded Seoul Conference on Cyberspace, a memo was circulated calling for the creation of a "Commission on the Future of Internet Cooperation." The commission, the confidential memo said, would consist of "civic leaders, ministers, CEOs and technical pioneers." Its purpose will be to "provide new ideas for transnational and multistakeholder proposals for Internet governance." According to the leaked document, the group is supposed to begin work in October and conclude its work with a presentation at the World Economic Forum in January 2014. more

Can ICANN Survive Today’s Global Geo-Political Challenges Under Its Existing Narrow Mandate?

Recently, the Presidents of four Latin American countries slammed ICANN over its .amazon domain name decision. This added to a long list of geo-politically infused challenges which ICANN needed to render final decisions on after all delay tactics or deferments had already been fully exhausted. It is clear that ICANN is facing unprecedented challenges as it tackles issues that go beyond its current narrow mandate. more

The Three-Character Question at the Heart of Single-Character .COMs: W-H-Y?

In the matter relating to O.COM, I've focused on the fact that VeriSign has -- in correspondence to the organization that is counter-party to its .COM and transliterated .COM IDN Registry Agreements, in earnings calls with its investors and financial analysts, and in policy published on its website for every innocent and unsuspecting Tom, Dick, and Harry in the world to be duped by -- stated an unequivocal and unwavering commitment . more

Enhanced Cooperation v2005 is Dead; Long Live Enhanced Cooperation

The page with the WSIS version of enhanced cooperation of Internet governance, developed in 2005, was turned forever on 30 September 2016 with the expiration of the IANA contract between the NTIA and ICANN. The IANA arrangement was the last issue that remained unchanged since the WSIS Tunis phase where the international community discussed Internet governance related issues for the first time. On 1 October 2016, the concept of enhanced cooperation as defined by the Tunis Agenda ceased to exist. more

Domestic Internet of Russia, Iran Far Deeper Kind of Fragmentation, More Physical Than Seen Before

The internet fragmentation practiced by various countries have, for the most part, been alternations to the information flows on top of the internet architecture, not the architecture itself. China, for instance, still relies on the global DNS and is yet to unplug from major internet exchange points. more

The 50th Anniversaries of the Moon Landing and First ARPANET Message

The anniversaries of these milestones remind us of the economic and social returns we have seen from ambitious Federal research and development programs. These events were milestones... the manned spaceflight program and the development of digital telecommunication networks from Morse's telegraph to early electronic digital computers and telemetry experiments, the SAGE early-warning system and eventually the ARPANET and the Internet. more

How to Best Manage the Social Media

The internet started to take on momentum in the 1990s. At that time many analysts, myself included, marveled at the opportunity of creating a platform that would boost grassroot democracy. There was no need for a middleman and there were few barriers to ordinary people becoming involved. This included organizing groups, discussions and events, sharing knowledge, insights and information, publishing opinions -- just some of the potential attached to the internet. more

Back to the Future Part IV: The Price-Fixing Paradox of the DNS

GenX-ers may remember spending a summer afternoon at the movie theater and seeing the somewhat corny but beloved antics of Marty McFly and Doc as they used a souped-up Delorean to travel the space-time continuum. In Back to the Future Part II, Doc and Marty travel into the future, where the bullying, boorish Biff causes a time-travel paradox when he steals the Delorean and takes a joyride into the past to give his younger self a sports almanac containing the final scores of decades worth of sporting events. more

State Department Should Return to Its Knitting

Having researched and written about the 100 year history of U.S. State Department's institutional machinations in the telecom/cyber sector, taught law school graduate courses, and worked with its bureaus and staff over the past 45 years, the latest twists and turns seem to repeat past mistakes. The fundamental problem is that the U.S. is the only country whose Foreign Ministry is given a significant role and engaged in telecom and cyber matters in global venues. more

The UN Panel on Digital Cooperation: An Agenda for the 2020s

The UN Panel on Digital Cooperation presented last week in New York its final report, and an old question is back on the international agenda: Could the global Internet be ordered by a reasonable arrangement among stakeholders which would maximize the digital opportunities and minimize the cyber risks by keeping the network free, open and safe? more

Is UN SG Guterres Driving the Bus That Macron Threw UN IGF & Multistakeholderism Under at IGF Paris?

A fresh & transparent, community-led, bottom-up, public debate has now become unavoidable and undeferrable. "....we need limited and smart regulation" were the clear and unambiguous words of UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres at the launch of the final report of his UN Panel on Digital Cooperation last week in New York. Last November, I wrote about President Macron throwing down the gauntlet at UN IGF Paris challenging IGF and Multistakeholderism to become more relevant.  more