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The Most Important Meeting You've Never Heard of 171

Posted by timothy
from the but-only-if-you-use-the-internet dept.
An anonymous reader writes "In December the nations of the world will gather in Dubai for the UN-convened World Conference on International Telecommunications (WCIT – pronounced 'wicket'). The topic of the meeting is nothing less than the regulation of the Internet. Under the auspices of the International Telecommunications Union the governments of the world will review the international treaty known as the International Telecommunications Regulations (ITR). The last review of the ITR was in 1988 when the Internet was just aborning. The remarkable and reshaping growth of the Internet provides the excuse for the new review. What's really afoot, however, is an effort by some nations to rebalance the Internet in their favor by reinstituting telecom regulatory concepts from the last century." At least it's being held in a hotbed of unfettered online communication.
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The Most Important Meeting You've Never Heard of

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  • Gandolf metaphor (Score:2, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday October 02, 2012 @09:11AM (#41524501)

    Gandolf: "No! You must understand... I would use this ring from a desire to do good, but through me, it would wield a power too great and terrible to imagine".

  • Re:HO Ho (Score:4, Interesting)

    by fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) on Tuesday October 02, 2012 @09:25AM (#41524645) Journal

    Which is to say, it's a fantastic time saver if the plan is to consider, but then reject, the idea...

  • by gestalt_n_pepper (991155) on Tuesday October 02, 2012 @09:51AM (#41524963)

    To avoid wealthy-elite/government domination of communications, you'll need an open source, wireless mesh internet, sort of like these guys (, to create an "underground" internet, perhaps literally (

  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday October 02, 2012 @09:55AM (#41525013)

    The medium is the message: Governments and Industry are at the table and we aren't.

  • by gsgriffin (1195771) on Tuesday October 02, 2012 @10:24AM (#41525375)

    Wow! A non-US citizen that isn't throwing crap at us every chance you get? Sure, we work hard, make a lot of money and help a lot of struggling nations, clean up after natural disasters, and give far more to charity around the world than any other nations (per person and collectively as a nation). There will no be many that try to turn that around and call us evil and controlling....I just try to imagine what the world would be like if Iran were the most powerful country in the would this conversation be going on the Internet today....oh yeh, not'd be hunted down, imprisoned and killed for writing this.

    Yes, the US wants to have protection over copyrighted material. Take away that completely, and you will see software and movies and entertainment fade away as they are unable to make money doing it. Give people that take the risk and pay upfront to create something their reward. I don't get this everything should always be free for everyone mentality....except, of course, if it is something YOU create or make...then you should get paid.


  • by JWW (79176) on Tuesday October 02, 2012 @12:17PM (#41526945)

    If ever there needed to be proof the legislators NEVER think of unintended consequences of the laws/programs they create, the Internet is it.

    There is NO WAY IN HELL that if they had known what the Internet would become that they would have passed the legislation and funded the programs that spawned it in the way that they did. They would have ensured the regulatory capture first, which would have saved them all this hassle of a rear guard action of trying to achieve it now.

    The Internet's success was probably the most serendipitous accident in human history. Had the lawmakers actually really known exactly what they were doing, I am certain they would not have done it.

    Please note that I am not at all inferring that the engineers and technical experts working at DARPA at the time didn't know exactly what THEY were doing...

"Atomic batteries to power, turbines to speed." -- Robin, The Boy Wonder