Sunday, October 4, 2009

U.S. Surrenders Internet Control: ICANN Goes International

In general, this policy giveaway seems initially benign--until you consider that many foreign governments run by oppressive, totalitarian dictators lack a fundamental appreciation, shall we say, for freedom of speech. And when you consider how the dysfunctional, corrupt United Nations operates, do we really want a "virtual U.N." playing any role in Internet connectivity?
After complaints about American dominance of the internet and growing disquiet in some parts of the world, Washington has said it will relinquish some control over the way the network is run and allow foreign governments more of a say in the future of the system.
Icann – the official body that ultimately controls the development of the internet thanks to its oversight of web addresses such as .com, .net and .org – said today that it was ending its agreement with the US government.
The deal, part of a contract negotiated with the US department of commerce, effectively pushes California-based Icann towards a new status as an international body with greater representation from companies and governments around the globe.
The Obama administration's foreign policy has run the gamut from inept to devious (and let's remember it has also has put forth its own potentially unconstitutional initiatives to try to control the Internet), so once again we are left with the the fundamental question: how does this policy change make American safer and more secure?