US cuts cord on internet oversight

October 1, 2016
When an agreement with the US Commerce Department runs out, ICANN will become a self-regulating non-profit international entity

The US government on Saturday ended its formal oversight role over the internet, handing over management of the online address system to a global non-profit entity.

The US Commerce Department announced that its contract had expired with the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers, which manages the 's so-called "."

That leaves ICANN as a self-regulating organization that will be operated by the internet's "stakeholders"—engineers, academics, businesses, non-government and government groups.

The move is part of a decades-old plan by the US to "privatize" the internet, and backers have said it would help maintain its integrity around the world.

US and ICANN officials have said the contract had given Washington a symbolic role as overseer or the internet's "root zone" where new online domains and addresses are created.

But critics, including some US lawmakers, argued that this was a "giveaway" by Washington that could allow authoritarian regimes to seize control.

A last-ditch effort by critics to block the plan—a lawsuit filed by four US states—failed when a Texas federal judge refused to issue an injunction to stop the transition.

Lawrence Strickling, who heads the Commerce Department unit which has managed these functions, issued a brief statement early Saturday confirming the transition of the Internet Assigned Numbers Authority (IANA).

"As of October 1, 2016, the IANA functions contract has expired," he said.

Stephen Crocker, ICANN's board chairman and one of the engineers who developed the early internet protocols, welcomed the end of the contract.

"This transition was envisioned 18 years ago, yet it was the tireless work of the global Internet community, which drafted the final proposal, that made this a reality," he said in a statement.

"This community validated the multi-stakeholder model of Internet governance. It has shown that a governance model defined by the inclusion of all voices, including business, academics, technical experts, civil society, governments and many others is the best way to assure that the Internet of tomorrow remains as free, open and accessible as the Internet of today."

The Internet Society, a group formed by internet founders aimed at keeping the system open, said the transition was a positive step.

"The IANA transition is a powerful illustration of the multi-stakeholder model and an affirmation of the principle that the best approach to address challenges is through bottom-up, transparent, and consensus-driven processes," the group said in a statement.

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14 comments

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Shootist
3.3 / 5 (7) Oct 01, 2016
stupid is as stupid does.

This nation was attacked by muslim fanatics on 9/11/01 in the worse attack on American soil ever. Seven years later they elected a man with no credentials beyond being a 'community organizer' who had been raised by muslims and communists.

stupid is as stupid does.
tblakely1357
3 / 5 (3) Oct 01, 2016
I'm sure this will turn out well because international organizations set the standard for ethical behavior and competency.
MR166
1 / 5 (1) Oct 01, 2016
It is very hard to implement a One World Government if there is a free exchange of knowledge. This is all part of the plan for central control of every aspect of your life. I do find it hard to comprehend the fact that the most educated are the least in favor of individual freedoms and uncensored speech.
antialias_physorg
5 / 5 (5) Oct 01, 2016
stupid is as stupid does.

They handed over the authority for giving out addresses. This isn't any kind of 'control'in terms of being able to direct flow or what is/isn't onthe internet (least of all over free speech on the internet - that is contriolled by the local ISPs).

And as a proponent of democracy you should applaud this move. Can't get more democratic than everyone having a voice in ICANN (as it is from now on). Or is democracy only an internal US thing (as if the US even has one)...and the rest of the world should bow down to US dictatorship? Ridiculous.
szore88
1 / 5 (2) Oct 02, 2016
stupid is as stupid does.

They handed over the authority for giving out addresses. This isn't any kind of 'control'in terms of being able to direct flow or what is/isn't onthe internet (least of all over free speech on the internet - that is contriolled by the local ISPs).

And as a proponent of democracy you should applaud this move. Can't get more democratic than everyone having a voice in ICANN (as it is from now on). Or is democracy only an internal US thing (as if the US even has one)...and the rest of the world should bow down to US dictatorship? Ridiculous.


Stupid is. Period.
optical
Oct 02, 2016
This comment has been removed by a moderator.
optical
Oct 02, 2016
This comment has been removed by a moderator.
antialias_physorg
5 / 5 (4) Oct 02, 2016
Stupid is. Period.

...and the reason why you think this is stupid is...?
Or are you just parroting the uninformed opinions of some politicians in the media who also don't have an answer when actually pressed on this point?
What kind of control do *you* think ICANN has over the internet? Let's have it out and see where you are mistaken.
optical
Oct 02, 2016
This comment has been removed by a moderator.
Semmster
1 / 5 (2) Oct 02, 2016
Time will tell.
optical
Oct 02, 2016
This comment has been removed by a moderator.
antialias_physorg
5 / 5 (2) Oct 02, 2016
Time will tell.

Translation: You didn't have a clue and still don't. About par for the course for you.
BSD
5 / 5 (3) Oct 02, 2016
stupid is as stupid does.

This nation was attacked by muslim fanatics on 9/11/01 in the worse attack on American soil ever. Seven years later they elected a man with no credentials beyond being a 'community organizer' who had been raised by muslims and communists.

stupid is as stupid does.


Hello Dopey, you're still here. Thought you'd accidently shot yourself in the head by now. LOL
Anda
5 / 5 (2) Oct 03, 2016
World wide web isn't it? So world wide management. What's all the fuss.

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