ICANN chief urges wide Internet control

November 18, 2014
Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) President and CEO Fadi Chehadé called for the "preservation of a decentralised, transnational and not too fragmented governance" of the Internet on Tuesday

The head of the private agency that acts as gatekeeper for the Internet called Tuesday for international discussions to ensure control of the web remains decentralised.

Fadi Chehade, president and CEO of the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN), called for the "preservation of a decentralised, transnational and not too fragmented governance" of the Internet.

He told a Geneva conference that the Internet should remain "polycentric" but that the private and public sectors should work together.

"Only initiatives involving the private sector and governments can successfully and effectively address crucial issues like cybercrime, taxation of e-commerce, and child protection," Chehade said.

ICANN, which is in charge of assigning domain names, is likely to break free of US oversight late next year.

Washington said in March it might not renew its contract with the Los Angeles-based agency, provided a new oversight system is in place that ensures the Internet addressing structure is reliable.

"ICANN is not and shall not be an island disconnected from other stakeholders," Chehade said.

The agency plans to submit a proposal on oversight to the US Department of Commerce next year.

In an interview published Tuesday in Swiss daily Le Temps, Chehade said the role of the United States—one of ICANN's 147 member countries—would remain important.

"If our DNA remains American, our openness to the world is a reality."

US Commerce Secretary Penny Pritzker pledged at a meeting of Internet leaders in October that the United States would "protect and preserve a free, vibrant and open Internet".

Pritzker said that while the United States might not renew its contract with ICANN, it still had a responsibility to encourage a decentralised Internet.

"The United States will not allow the global Internet to be co-opted by any person, entity, or nation seeking to substitute their parochial world view for the collective wisdom of this community," she said.

Explore further: US to relinquish key oversight role for Internet (Update)

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Eikka
not rated yet Nov 19, 2014
The head of the private agency that acts as gatekeeper for the Internet called Tuesday for international discussions to ensure control of the web remains decentralised.


How can you decentralize something that was designed from the start to be centralized?

The system of IP addresses for routing was designed to be controlled from a single point, and without that single authority you get address collisions and the whole internet as we know it breaks down into separate non-communicating blocs.

Answer is: you don't. If you give every nation a say in it, troll countries like Russia or China can and will eventually use it to further political agenda and sacrifice the integrity of the internet towards that end.

If you want to decentralize it, you need a new routing system where addresses are based on actual routes instead of arbitrary numbers assigned to single endpoints. Kinda like how street addresses and phone numbers work.

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