Policy & Regulation

Policy & Regulation / Most Commented

Leading Global Standards Organizations Endorse 'OpenStand' Principles

Five leading group of global organizations - IEEE, Internet Architecture Board (IAB), Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF), Internet Society and World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) - today announced that they have signed a statement affirming the importance of a jointly developed set of principles establishing a modern paradigm for global, open standards. The group have invited other standards organizations, governments, corporations and technology innovators globally to endorse the principles. more»

Strong Support for IDNs, GEOs and/or Communities to Go First

ICANN's public comment period on how to resolve the contention scenario for probably 1,409 new gTLDs entering the root has closed on 19 August 2012. Alltogether 98 comments from parties around the globe have been received, representing language communities, cities, corporations, entrepreneurs and Internet users. In contrast to many comment periods we have participated in during the 7-year long policy development process for new gTLDs it seems that a clear opinion emerges from the applicants' community and other parties. more»

dot DO or dot DIE?

ICANN has started dot name evaluations and charging ahead at their full speed. Mathematically it can be proven that any reasonable success of the current 1500 proposed dot names will result in tens of thousands of additional applications in the subsequent rounds. It is estimated that by the year 2020 there will be 10,000 dot names in operation and by 2025 the number would easily double. Such forecasts are not based on technological advances more»

Internet Challenges Need Win-Win Solutions

The current internet versus telcos debate that is going to be played out at the WCIT conference in Dubai later this year is still following the old confrontational pattern. The telco industry, for all the right reasons, started off as a monopolistic one. With the limited technology and knowledge of that time this system has been able to deliver telephone networks to all the countries in the world, and the industry can be proud of that achievement... However technology and knowledge have progressed... more»

It's Time to Put a Bow on the URS: Our Work is Almost Done

For years our community has struggled with the rules of the URS - the Uniform Rapid Suspension - aimed at taking down the "worst of the worst" domain name registrations in a manner faster and cheaper than its predecessor, the Uniform Domain Name Dispute Resolution Policy - the UDRP. On June 27, in Prague, a diverse group met to discuss the fate of the URS. To my surprise, it was a rare "kumbaya" moment, and that makes it worthy of comment. more»

The Federal Cybersecurity Regulation Already in Place

While Congress and the White House deliberate possible actions on FISMA reform and increased oversight of critical infrastructure, relatively little attention is being given to the government-wide cybersecurity regulation already in place, the Data Quality Act (DQA). Unlike FISMA, which primarily governs the government's internal cybersecurity processes, and contemplated legislation and/or Executive Order(s), which would likely also include a focus on critical infrastructure protection, the DQA contains a unique mandate. more»

The ITRs and Cybersecurity

Cybersecurity is a top-of-mind issue with calls for individual vigilance, national legislation, and international treaties to address gaps that are exploited causing significant harm and financial loss on a daily basis. The vast majority of these calls are well-intentioned though even among the best-intentioned, some are poorly directed. Such is the case with all of the proposals that would introduce security into the International Telecommunication Regulations (ITRs) of the International Telecommunication Union (ITU). more»

New Top Level Domains Application Metering - Figure It Out ICANN!

Let me begin by saying that I am big supporter of ICANN. But good grief ICANN, why must the ENTIRE new gTLD process be so painful? I could run through a long list of all the delays, missteps and glitches, but why bother? It's almost comical at this point -- although not for 1,930 new gTLD applicants who have been waiting for ICANN to get their act together. First we were led to believe that the batching of applications was necessary due to resourcing constraints, which I personally never understood as the evaluation of applications is being done be third-party consultants. more»

Disruptive Google Fiber Is Shaking up the Telco World

The Google Fiber project is receiving international attention. This in itself is a good thing, since it brings the benefits of high-speed FttH infrastructure to the attention of large numbers of people in business and government who will not have to deal with such developments on a regular basis... At the same time we have to look at Google Fiber from the point of view of operating in the American regulatory environment. Yes, we can all learn from its disruptive model, and particularly when the results of the more innovative elements of the services begin to kick in; but for other reasons there is no way that this model can be replicated elsewhere. more»

"Globally, Internet Traffic Passes Through 13 Root Servers" (!)

The Times of India recently interviewed India's Minister of State for Communications and IT, Sachin Pilot, on Internet Governance. Titled "'Internet's governance can't be limited to one geography'", the article started off with an amazing assertion by the minister... While this interview is a fairly standard restatement of the position some Governments (including India) have about governmental control of Internet Governance, it is sadly apparent that the minister unfortunately doesn't appear to understand what the root servers are, or how they work. more»

'Registration Blocks' Provide Protection

When the ICM Registry initially launched .XXX last year, the notion of a 'registration block' was a fairly novel idea. Essentially, the ICM Registry allowed companies who were not part of the "global adult entertainment industry", to seek permanent removal of names matching their trademarks from the general pool of names available for registration for a low-cost fee. Many saw this move by the ICM Registry as a genuine attempt to protect the rights of brand owners, while others saw it as yet another mechanism for generating revenue from rights owners under the guise of a "Sunrise Period." more»

US Telcos Withdrawing from DSL and Telephony Markets - A Case of Lobbying Power and Poor Regulation

During the last few months the US's main DSL providers AT&T and Verizon have begun retracting from the DSL and landline market in many rural and less commercially viable areas while concentrating on their wireless LTE ambitions. DSL and voice telephony provide relatively low returns, which can be whittled away through network maintenance costs, while LTE promises to deliver proportionately higher profits, based on exorbitant charges by data volume.  more»

Regulation as Innovation

The European Telecommunications Network Operators' Association (ETNO) has issued a press release in which its Executive Board Chair and the ITU's Secretary-General "reiterated the importance of the WCIT to lay the framework that will facilitate the further growth of an innovative, and sustainable future for the telecom and information and communication technology sector (including the Internet)". 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»

ICANN's New TLDs: Of Course There Will Be an Auction - Part 2

A few days ago I opined that if several people want the same Top-Level Domain (TLD) and can't come to terms otherwise, they should arrange a private auction. It would be an odd sort of auction, since the buyers and sellers are the same people, so unlike normal auctions, the goal is not to maximize the selling price. How might it work? more»