Internet Governance

Internet Governance / Recently Commented

The State of the Internet During the Anti-Government Protests in Cuba

On Sunday, July 11, thousands of Cubans, took to the streets in anti-government protests triggered by COVID, the faltering economy, and an overwhelmed healthcare system. In three days, 110 protests took place across the island. The following is a snapshot of an interactive, crowd-sourced map showing the locations of 118 large and small demonstrations (94 reported on the 11th, 14 on the 12th, seven on the 13th and three on the 17th). more

What ICANN Should Do Now to Help Future Applicants of New gTLDs

During ICANN71, the Brand Registry Group (BRG) openly asked potential future applicants what ICANN can do to help prepare them for the next gTLD round. The answer was very clear - commit to opening the next round and provide as much information as possible early on. However, in recent correspondence to the BRG from ICANN Chair, Maarten Botterman, he emphasized that "significant work lies ahead of us: the 2012 Applicant Guidebook must be updated with more than 100 outputs... more

3 Strategies for Keeping ICANN and IANA On-Mission and Out of Politics

Over the last year, the ICANN community has been raging on about two issues: the looming IANA transition away from the US government, and how to ensure the organization is accountable to all the Internet's stakeholders. While the issues have run on separate tracks, they both boil down to one question: can ICANN be trusted to be a good steward of the Internet's future? The answer to this question will go a long way in deciding ICANN's future. more

Multistakeholderism Is Working: Even in Exile

I'm happy to report (mostly) positive feedback on my last article that examined how the multistakeholder model tackled, and tackled well, Phase 1 of the review of all Rights Protection Mechanisms. While bad news may sell more clicks, a little good news from time to time also appears to be welcome. Good news also reminds us of how fortunate we are to have a private sector ICANN with a multistakeholder model of policy development... more

ICANN, or ICAN'T or IWON'T?

We're halfway into ICANN71, and early interactions are posing questions about ICANN Org's capability to carry out its mission to maintain an orderly domain name system (DNS). Or, if that's not the case, ICANN leadership seems bent on a hands-off approach to its oversight responsibilities to the DNS. For years now - years - the ICANN community has raised the volume level about acute issues -- a workable Whois management and access system (including clearly delineated controllership)... more

As DENIC's CEO Jörg Schweiger Prepares to Step Down, He Speaks About His Time at DENIC

In January Jörg Schweiger, DENIC's CTO from 2007 to 2014 and CEO since 2014, announced he was stepping down from his position in December. It's been quite a ride, and the domain name industry has evolved quite a lot. So we asked Jörg a few questions about his time with DENIC and the changes he's seen... he came up with some insightful views on why he thought new TLDs missed a great opportunity to do something with "innovative new business models," the importance of security to DENIC... more

The IETF Evolution

The Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF) is a collaborative body that has developed internetworking specifications for more than five decades, successfully shaping the global marketplace of digital network equipment and services. Beginning as a kind of distributed think tank among network researchers in 1969, it evolved to become one of the world's most influential standards bodies. more

Mistrust of ICANN Is Fully Vindicated

Recently, I have been reporting on a highly questionable auction scheme for a single domain name, o.com, which is currently being improperly warehoused by ICANN along with a number of other .com and .net domain names. This violates ICANN's Bylaws -- but, so what? more

Facebook's "Supreme Court" Has Implications for International Law

Last year, Facebook created its widely dubbed "Supreme Court" (officially the Oversight Board) in an effort to outsource some of the platform's most difficult content decisions. By all accounts, Facebook hoped the Board would have global legitimacy to make the toughest content decisions and help avoid reputational damage for being biased, arbitrary, tone-deaf, or worse. more

Leaked Documents Reveal Xi Jinping's Communist Chinese Plan to Control the Internet's Root

Yesterday, The Epoch Times reported on leaked internal Chinese government documents revealing that premier Xi Jinping has "personally directed the communist regime to focus its efforts to control the global Internet, displacing the influential role of the United States." Xi's ultimate aim is for the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) to wield "discourse power" over communications and discussions on the global geopolitical stage by controlling content on the Internet. more

Is NIST's Recent Letter on o.com a Bureaucratic Coup d'Etat?

Verisign recently informed ICANN that it had received a letter from the National Institute for Standards and Technology (NIST), an agency of the U.S. Department of Commerce, regarding the proposed auction of o.com described in the Second Amendment to the .com Registry Agreement agreed to by ICANN and Verisign in March 2019. This letter, which doesn't appear to be on official letterhead, is from a NIST Grants Officer and purports to overturn a letter raising objections to the auction... more

The Multistakeholder Moment of Truth: Will Stakeholders Hold ICANN Accountable?

During the two-year period preceding the IANA transition in 2016, there was a near-superhuman effort put forth by the community of stakeholders to design, debate, and deploy an accountability framework for ICANN that would serve to check and balance the coordinator of the global DNS. One of the overriding concerns that stakeholders sought to address was the possibility of ICANN being captured, and it was argued that the global community of stakeholders would serve as a "backstop" that would hold ICANN accountable. more

The Insult and Injury of the U.S. Government's Failure to Enforce ICANN's Contractual Obligation

Someone recently observed that many stakeholders have fallen victim to a "chilling effect" resulting from fear of retaliation by the rich and powerful bullies currently infecting the multistakeholder community, ICANN, and Internet governance. I related to what I was hearing because I've been personally targeted and libelously attacked and it is deeply dismaying enough having to worry about threats to revenue and reputation along with other harmful effects of such thuggery. more

Why ICANN Rejected ISOC's Billion-Dollar Attempt At Feathering Its Own Nest With .org Sale?

As I've pointed out in recent articles, the promises and obligations of the Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) are merged by direct reference into the InterNIC licensing agreement between the U.S. Department of Commerce and ICANN. This licensing agreement has been extended twice by mutual consent, most recently until January 2025. Therefore, the MOU's promises and obligations remain in effect through the InterNIC licensing agreement despite the fact that the MOU itself terminated in 2009. more

An Anti-Competitive .com Fait Accompli?

In a recent article, Is ICANN Staff Misleading the Board Into Violating Obligations to the U.S. Government, I wrote: The referenced Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) is the vehicle by which the U.S. government delegates to ICANN the responsibilities for overseeing the technical management of the Internet's Domain Name System (DNS)... This is important for many reasons, and much remains to be analyzed for additional context that can help expose the rot at the Internet's root. more

Industry Updates

Together for the Good of the Internet: eco Complaints Office Registers More Reports Than Ever Before

The New .AU Domain Licensing Rules and Their Impact

Afilias Joins Global Encryption Coalition to Promote Internet Security

i2Coalition and DNA Merger Creates North America's Largest Internet Infrastructure Advocacy Group

Afilias Endorses Global Commission on the Stability of Cyberspace Final Report at Paris Peace Forum

Neustar and usTLD Stakeholder Council to Hold .US Town Hall Live Webcast

Afilias Thanks Desiree Miloshevic for 12 Years of Service to ISOC

Afilias Joins Global Commission on the Stability of Cyberspace

Melinda Clem Named i2Coalition Chair Elect for 2019

i2Coalition Releases Statement On Australian Encryption Law Passing

Neustar and usTLD Stakeholder Council to Hold .US Town Hall Live Webcast

Frank Stiff Appointed Director and 2019 Board Chair Elect of the i2Coalition

i2Coalition Supports Open Internet and Multistakeholder Model in Comments to NTIA

eco/i2Coalition Update Webinar on ICANN Contracted Party GDPR Compliance

i2Coalition Focuses on Intermediary Liability Issues