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Internet Bifurcation: Will the US-China Digital Arm-Twisting Splinter the Open and Free Internet?

The Internet controversy between the US and China is escalating. The Trump Administration is fighting against Huawei, TikTok and We Chat. China is pushing back with new export regulations for Chinese IT technology. August 5, 2020 the US State Department launched a "Clean Network" initiative, aimed to remove Chinese digital corporations from the global supply chain in today's interconnected world. September 8, 2020 the Chinese Foreign Ministry replied with a "Data Security" initiative, aimed to enhance global cybersecurity in "Chinese colours." more

A Failed Whois Policy

ICANN's two-year effort to purportedly preserve the Whois public directory to the greatest extent possible while complying with GDPR has failed. Under the latest proposal, the Whois database, once a contractually-required directory of domain name registrants, will be gutted to the point of virtual worthlessness, as registrars, registries, academics, and hand-wringing others ignored the public interest and imposed ever-higher barriers to legitimate, GDPR-compliant access to registration data. more

The Importance of the Emerging Data Trusts

I recently followed a webinar session organized by the University of Queensland on the factory of the future. Smart or not, the future will still need factories to make the stuff we humans use every day. One of the discussed questions included: "how will existing production models cope with the staggering and ongoing rate of digital disruption and advanced capabilities?" more

A Responsible Domain Industry Needs a Responsible Registrant Appeals Process

As the steward of .ORG, Public Interest Registry is committed to serving as an "exemplary registry" for the DNS. As part of that mission, PIR published our Anti-Abuse Principles last year that serve as our north star to address questions of abuse. As PIR has stated on many occasions, generally speaking, the DNS is not the appropriate place to address questions of website content abuse because of the blunt tool we as a registry have and the collateral damage that can be caused by suspending a domain name for a piece of content. more

TLD Maintenance Significantly Improved With the New Registry Maintenance Notifications for EPP

Three years ago, the first Internet-Draft on Registry Maintenance Notifications for the Extensible Provisioning Protocol (EPP) was published, which will become a Request for Comments (RFC). The IETF Registration Protocols Extensions (REGEXT) working group is the home of the coordination effort for standards track EPP extensions. They released eight RFCs over the last couple of years, and they are currently working on more than 15 Internet-Drafts. more

Is There Such a Thing as Technical Internet Governance?

In ICANN's "President & CEO Goals for Fiscal Year 2021", Göran Marby went out to make a curious distinction in the document's second stated goal, according to which he intends to "Implement a common strategy for Internet governance (IG) and technical Internet governance (TIG)". Proceeding to state that "we will begin by identifying the most important issues we need to address, followed by an assessment of where and how we can intervene, the venues we should use, and the resources required to be effective". more

Uniform Rapid Suspension Not Appropriate for .com Domain Names

The Internet Commerce Association has been actively involved for the last four years on the ICANN Working Group reviewing the Uniform Rapid Suspension (URS) policy and the Uniform Domain Name Dispute Resolution Policy (UDRP). The Working Group is currently wrapping up its review of the URS. The UDRP will be reviewed in an upcoming second phase. more

Too Little, Too Late? Why ICANN's Proposed WHOIS Access System Isn't Worth It

After two years of grueling, complex and contentious debate, the ICANN EPDP team delivered its Phase 2 Final Report on July 31st, 2020. Unfortunately, and disappointingly, the policy recommended for the so-called "System for Standardized Access/Disclosure" (SSAD) fails to meet the needs of the users it supposedly is designed to benefit. more

The TikTok Ban in Context

Donald Trump recently issued an executive order banning TikTok on the grounds that it was necessary to deal with the national emergency he had declared in an earlier executive order. He says he is concerned that TikTok might turn user's "information such as location data and browsing and search histories" over to the Chinese government. Trump does not site evidence of TikTok having shared data with China and TikTok says they have never shared user data with the Chinese government... more

Why Platform Regulation Concerns ICANN

With the publication of the Australian Governmental report on Digital Platforms1and in the light of the ongoing work on the EU's Digital Services Act, the spotlight of policymaking is on platforms such as Google, Facebook and Amazon. It is natural that members of the ICANN community want to discuss the role of platforms within the ICANN framework, but sadly and predictably, the usual bylaws jockeys and keepers of the true ICANN faith were quick to stifle the conversation. more

How Can Greater Security, Safety and Trust in the Internet Be Created?

In the coming days, the Internet Governance Forum Dynamic Coalition on Internet Standards, Security and Safety will be announced on the IGF website. The following is an invitation to participate, share ideas and best practices, the willingness to take on a new approach towards mass deployment of internet standards and ICT best practices. Feel free to reach out to us and start working towards a kick-off meeting at the global, virtual Internet Governance Forum in November. more

The EPDP Passed an Important Milestone… Now What?

This isn't the blog post I had hoped to write. When I signed up to participate in ICANN's Expedited Policy Development Process for gTLD Registration Data, I knew we had a lot of work ahead of us, but I was cautiously optimistic that we would, eventually, reach a successful outcome. Today, I find myself looking at things differently. After hundreds of hours and countless meetings and emails, Phase 2 of the EPDP's work has wrapped up with the delivery of our final report to the GNSO Council. more

Time to Stop Talking About Unserved and Underserved

I work with communities all of the time that want to know if they are unserved or underserved by broadband. I've started to tell them to toss away those two terms, which is not a good way to think about broadband today. The first time I remember the use of these two terms was as part of the 2009 grant program created by the American Recovery & Reinvestment Act of 2009. The language that created those grants included language from Congress that defined the two terms. more

Holding Trump Accountable Under Public International Law

Trump and his enablers are well known to disrespect if not disdain legal systems, including public international law. He has effectively abrogated every treaty instrument relating to international communications at the whim of a tweet. His behavior has dishonoured the USA in a way that will take years to remedy. Trump's actions to ban access to Android Operating System updates on Chinese products have significantly harmed cybersecurity worldwide. more

The Challenge of Access to Safe Internet Pharmacies and Medicines During Pandemics

With 300+ sessions and over 7,800 participants from 158 countries across every time zone, RightsCon Online 2020 (July 27-31) demonstrated the importance of convening people worldwide to bring about positive changes in a time of crisis. The Dahdaleh Institute for Global Health Research (York University, Canada) organized a panel of diverse experts and academics to discuss "Promoting human rights and access to safe medicines during pandemics: The critical role of Internet pharmacies." more

News Briefs

New Digital Services Act Should Not Disrupt Internet's Technical Operations, Warn RIPE NCC, CENTR

First Round of U.S. Layoffs Due to Huawei Blockade

China Accuses Washington of Damaging Global Trade With Huawei Sanctions

The Defense Department Opening Large Areas of Mid-Band Spectrum to Help US Compete With China in 5G

Internet Society Calls the US Clean Network Program a Political Act, A Push Towards "Splinternet"

UK Bans Huawei 5G Equipment, Also Orders 5G Kit to Be Removed From UK Networks by 2027

Trump Admin Ramping Up Attacks on GDPR – Says It Helps Cybercrime, Threatens Public Health

FCC Doubts LEO Satellite Broadband Services Like SpaceX's Starlink Can Meet Latency Requirements

Department of Commerce to Allow US Companies Work With Chinese to Develop 5G and Other Standards

FCC Proposes Over $200 Million in Fines Against Four Largest Wireless Carriers

American University Washington College of Law to Hold Open Discussion on the .ORG Sale Controversy

FCC Gives Google, Sony and Others Full Authorization for Commercial Deployment of 3.5 GHz Spectrum

Vint Cerf Says He Is in Favor of .ORG Acquisition, Explains Why

The Number Resource Organization (NRO) Issues Inspection Request to ICANN Concerning the .ORG Sale

U.N. Approves Resolution to Combat Cybercrime Despite Opposition From E.U., the U.S. and Others

Internet Society CEO Responds to Concerns Raised Over the .ORG Sale

Internet Commerce Association Calls for ICANN to Withhold Approval of .Org Sale

EFF: For ISPs to Retain Power to Censor the Internet, DNS Needs to Remain Leaky

Leading Domain Registries and Registrars Release Joint Document on Addressing 'DNS Abuse'

Germany's New Rules for Developing 5G Mobile Networks Will Not Exclude China's Huawei Technologies

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