Internet Governance

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We're Almost There… IANA Stewardship Transition

Since Friday, I have been listening to and, yes, talking to many in Dublin who are engaged in the multistakeholder effort to transition the IANA functions. Our goal is an orderly transition that both reaffirms the strength of the global multistakeholder model while protecting and preserving the coordinated, well-functioning administration of the unique identifiers that are the core of the technical genius of the Internet. more»

TLD Operators Should Not Police Content, Says EFF

Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) released a letter today stating "companies and organizations that run the Internet's domain name system shouldn't be in the business of policing the contents of websites, or enforcing laws that can impinge on free speech. more»

Rewiring Internet Governance: Step One Is About ICANN (Part 1)

It is time for some straight talk about governance. The word "governance" used here means authority. It does not merely mean rules, or coercion, or any other weasel-worded definitions that deflect our attention from the art of good governance as distinct from self-serving opportunism and illusory power sharing. Politics, as Theodore Lowi reminded us, is ultimately about "who gets what". Quibbling with endless essays about who rules the root is useful, but not demonstrative. more»

Is WCIT Failure the Start of a Digital Cold War?

This was never part of the plan. Going into the Dubai World Conference on International Telecommunications (WCIT) two weeks ago, there was optimism aplenty. After weeks of online and media campaigning, proponents of a free Internet had managed to scare everyone into thinking that WCIT was tantamount to digital Armageddon. This had the effect of defusing the conference before it even started, or so it seemed... more»

White House Calls for a Meeting with Domain Registrars, Registries, and ICANN

Brian Krebs reporting in Krebs on Secruity: "The Obama administration is inviting leaders of the top Internet domain name registrars and registries to attend a three-hour meeting at the White House next month about voluntary ways to crack down on Web sites that are selling counterfeit prescription medications..." more»

Intellectual Property Interests Line Up to Crucify ICANN in Congress

On Wednesday, May 4, the U.S. House Judiciary Committee will hold a hearing called ICANN Generic Top-Level Domains (gTLD) Oversight Hearing. Kurt Pritz from ICANN has been invited to testify. Arrayed against him are a parade of intellectual property interests, some reasonable, some pur et dur lobbyists for complete corporate hegemony over all aspects of the Internet. more»

Internet: Quo Vadis (Where are you going?)

Articles, blogs, and meetings about the internet of the future are filled with happy, positive words like "global", "uniform", and "open". The future internet is described in ways that seem as if taken from a late 1960's Utopian sci-fi novel: the internet is seen as overcoming petty rivalries between countries, dissolving social rank, equalizing wealth, and bringing universal justice. If that future is to be believed, the only obstacle standing between us and an Arcadian world of peace and harmony is that the internet does not yet reach everyone... more»

Lessons Behind the Microsoft 3322.org Takedown

The Microsoft action against 3322.org, a Chinese company, started with the news that computers were infected during the production phase. Stepping away from the controversy surrounding the approach, there are important lessons that cyber security officials and upper management, deciding on the level of and budget for cyber security in organisations should learn and take into account. I'm writing this contribution from a premise: China uses the fact that most IT devices are built in China to its advantage. Allow me to start with an account from personal memory to set the stage. more»

IP Addresses and Privacy Sensitive Data - A Level Playing Field Needed

Reading Peter Olthoorn's book on Google (a link is found here), I ran into a passage on IP addresses. Where Google states that it does not see an IP address as privacy sensitive. An IP address could be used by more than one person, it claims. The Article 29 Working Party, the EU privacy commissioners, states that it is privacy sensitive as a unique identifier of a private person. It got me wondering whether it is this simple. Here is a blog post meant to give some food for thought and debate. I invite you to think about the question 'how private is an IP address'? more»

Fixing WHOIS (and Some Other Stuff Too)

ICANN is the only institution with responsibility for the functioning of DNS. And so it is natural that when there is a DNS problem for people to expect ICANN to come up with the solution. But having the responsibility to act is not the same as having the ability. Like the IETF, ICANN appears to have been designed with the objective of achieving institutional paralysis. And this is not surprising since the first law of the Internet is 'You are so not in charge (for all values of you). more»

Individuals Barred from Registering China's .CN Domain

Reported today in the Global Times: "China's network information center said that individuals are effectively barred from registering domain names ending with .cn unless they have a business license to show they're a bona fide company. ... The China Internet Network Information Center (CNNIC) published a notice Sunday saying that applicants must submit written applications to the registration agents. The written materials must include an application form with an official seal, an enterprise business license and the registrant's ID card." more»

ICANN's GAC Talks Are Critical For New gTLDs

With Bill Clinton's appearance at ICANN San Francisco now confirmed to be more than mere rumor, the March meeting will be a very big event indeed. On its home turf, and under the glare of possibly unprecedented global attention, ICANN may feel some pressure to make sure it has some noteworthy news to announce at the end of the week, after its Board of Directors meets. more»

INET New York - Remote Participation Details

The Internet Society (ISOC) will present an INET Regional Conference today June 14 2011 at the Sentry Center in NYC. The theme is "It's your call. What kind Of Internet do you want?". The distinguished line up of speakers will include 'Father of the Internet' Vint Cerf, World Wide Web inventor Sir Tim Berners Lee, and Assistant Secretary for Communications and Information at the U.S. Department of Commerce Lawrence Strickling. more»

A Modest Proposal for ICANN

When it comes to accountability, ICANN would rather be compared to other U.S. nonprofit companies than to the regulatory bodies it more closely resembles. If they truly wish to be treated like a nonprofit, rather than a regulator, there is a very simple solution: make all contributions strictly voluntary. more»

TPP IP Chapter Leaks Reveal New U.S. Proposed Regulations for Country-Code Domain Names

The leaked Trans Pacific Partnership intellectual property chapter has revealed a number of U.S. proposals including U.S. demands for Internet provider liability that could lead to subscriber termination, content blocking, and ISP monitoring, copyright term extension and anti-counterfeiting provisions. This post discusses Article QQ.C.12 on domain names. more»