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The Internet United States Your Rights Online

The Clock Is Ticking For the US To Relinquish Control of ICANN (betanews.com) 183

Mark Wilson writes: The U.S. is not afraid to throw its weight around; it likes not only to be involved in things, but to be in control. For decades, ICANN (Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers) — the non-profit organization that manages IP addresses and domain names — has been overseen by the U.S. Department of Commerce, much to the chagrin of people around the world. Most upset are those who point to the independent nature of the internet, and the need for any body with global power to be similarly indpendent. Later this year ICANN is set — at long last — to completely separate from the U.S. government.

While this does hinge on U.S. government approval, by the end of September, ICANN could instead be in the hands of businesses, individuals, and multiple global governments. While the changing of hands should not alter the way ICANN operates, it is hoped that it will go some way to restoring faith that may have been lost after revelations about online surveillance by the NSA and other U.S. government agencies.

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The Clock Is Ticking For the US To Relinquish Control of ICANN

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  • by Anonymous Coward

    This isn't going to happen. Period.

    There is no way congress will pull their fingers out of their asses.

    • This isn't going to happen. Period.

      There is no way congress will pull their fingers out of their asses.

      Obama can easily make this happen with an Executive Decree . . . no need for Congress to approve anything.

      • The time of "executive decree" is quickly coming to an end. Expect some changes to come when the big O is out of the house.
    • The world doesn't actually require permission to take control of the Internet away from the USA. Just set up your own command and control system and configure all the Internet to use it. Unless America is willing to stand guard over the entire Internet infrastructure (maybe?) the control will be gone.
      • The USA is still a major internet hub. If the american telcos won't accept your addresses then you are likely to have major communication issues not just with the USA but with large parts of the world.

  • NSA? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Dog-Cow ( 21281 ) on Monday January 25, 2016 @09:11AM (#51364951)

    What does NSA spying have to do with who gives out domain names and IP address blocks? Stupidity.

    • Re:NSA? (Score:5, Insightful)

      by gstoddart ( 321705 ) on Monday January 25, 2016 @10:23AM (#51365257) Homepage

      A fundamental lack of trust for the US these days.

      The fact that everybody knows of the secret US laws which can demand they lie to you about if the government has demanded information causes the perception that, any entity in the hands of the US or its government is not free from interference and meddling.

      You know, how tech companies are fighting the government in court about back doors in encryption, or handing over foreign data from foreign servers despite that being in violation of the laws in those countries.

      Do American truly not understand the extent to which the trust level of the US has been severely eroded? Or are you laboring under the belief nobody has noticed?

      Because the act of making every agency and corporation a part of the US spy apparatus has the effect of everybody assuming they can't trust those entities due to the fact that ... well, they can't.

      • Re:NSA? (Score:4, Insightful)

        by Trailer Trash ( 60756 ) on Monday January 25, 2016 @11:21AM (#51365693) Homepage

        Okay. So, we have to ask again - what does this have to do with keeping a registry of who "owns" what blocks of IP addresses?

      • This.
          I don't think the USians on here understand how bad the USA screwed up and is continuing to screw up from the rest of the world's point of view. Imagine if you lived in a country that was "more free" then the USA (they do exist), would you want the USA running anything? Or is the argument that the USA's opinion in less bad then Iran so they should be in charge solely instead of a group?

      • The fact that everybody knows of the secret US laws which can demand they lie to you about if the government has demanded information

        Nit: Those laws aren't secret. You can go read those laws.

        Which isn't to say that we don't have secret laws, (oxy)moronic as that may sound. But as far as we can tell, the only secret laws we have are those defining TSA procedures. (Technically, they're regulations, not laws, but federal regulations have most of the force of law, so that's very nearly a distinction without a difference.)

        • by guises ( 2423402 )
          I would like to read those laws. I'm familiar with gag orders, but not with anything that can require you to say something you don't want to say. That would invalidate that whole warrent canary thing that a lot of privacy-minded groups are doing.

          Can you tell me where I might find the text of these laws? Or maybe just a name so I can find it for myself?
          • I would like to read those laws.

            The Wikipedia article on National Security Letters has links.

            I'm familiar with gag orders, but not with anything that can require you to say something you don't want to say.

            I'm quite certain the law only provides for gag orders, and cannot force you to lie. I didn't call gstoddart on that imprecision.

            That would invalidate that whole warrent canary thing that a lot of privacy-minded groups are doing.

            I'm not sure the warrant canary thing is legal. I think a court might construe the removal of the "no warrants" statement as an affirmative statement that a warrant with accompanying gag order has been received. In that way, I suppose it's possible that the law could require you to lie.

            • by guises ( 2423402 )
              Well, the way the canary works is that you don't remove it yourself. It's removed automatically if you don't periodically reconfirm that you haven't been served with a warrant (or National Security Letter).
              • Well, the way the canary works is that you don't remove it yourself. It's removed automatically if you don't periodically reconfirm that you haven't been served with a warrant (or National Security Letter).

                I don't think judges are likely to be impressed by such hair-splitting.

                • by guises ( 2423402 )
                  I... might agree with you on something else, but this is the difference between forcing someone to do something and forcing someone not to do something. That's not a minor difference, that's a big deal. To my knowledge it hasn't been tested in court, so you may be right there, but a judge would have to bend pretty far backwards in order to make that work.
                  • Well, let's just hope that someone finds a way to force this issue into court. The biggest problem is that the government has so many ways to keep the questions from even being investigated. The worst possible case is that a company is compelled to keep the canary up and can't even argue about it in the public view (the argument would serve as canary removal).
  • Dumb (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday January 25, 2016 @09:12AM (#51364955)

    Any link between ICANN and NSA (or any other information gathering organization) is utterly dumb. ICANN doesn't determine network protocols, ICANN doesn't have any say in encryption, ICANN doesn't deal with routing, ICANN is not about security. It is a little like linking the Dept of Agriculture with influence over the recent UN nuclear deal.

    Moving ICANN away from a government can only mean one thing ... fees. The "corporation" part of their name is about to come into more play. Get ready to get gouged!

    • Re:Dumb (Score:5, Informative)

      by Anonymous Coward on Monday January 25, 2016 @11:18AM (#51365673)

      Any link between ICANN and NSA (or any other information gathering organization) is utterly dumb. ICANN doesn't determine network protocols, ICANN doesn't have any say in encryption, ICANN doesn't deal with routing, ICANN is not about security. It is a little like linking the Dept of Agriculture with influence over the recent UN nuclear deal.

      ICANN may not determine the internals of a network protocol, but they do handle how some of those protocols function. For example, beyond doling out IP addresses, ICANN doles out the AS Numbers used for routing on the Internet. They also choose what top level domains exist and who may assign to them. They provide the unique OID numbers used for SNMP. The select what codes are assigned to various protocols at the Ethernet level and the IP level, thus indirectly selecting what protocols are standard and may interoperate on the Internet. They select the numbers used in DHCP, thus selecting what information may be served via DHCP and what may not. They define what mechanisms are standard authentication for HTTP. They define what digest algorithms are part of the HTTP standard and how they are identified.

      They do various other related things that help people coalesce around standard names/numbers for making communication on the Internet possible.

    • ... ICANN doesn't deal with routing, ICANN is not about security.

      ICANN (and the US Department of Commerce) controls the DNS Root Server Advisory Committee [wikipedia.org]. Having control of the root DNS zones amounts to ultimate control over everyone's DNS, which has an indirect effect on routing and a direct effect on security.

  • by Trailer Trash ( 60756 ) on Monday January 25, 2016 @09:16AM (#51364969) Homepage

    "While the changing of hands should not alter the way ICANN operates, it is hoped that it will go some way to restoring faith that may have been lost after revelations about online surveillance by the NSA and other U.S. government agencies."

    Really? What do these two issues have to do with each other? Does the NSA somehow have a leg up on the competition because another US agency doles out IP address blocks?

    Smells like anti-US idiocy, and I say that as someone who's not real thrilled with the NSA's activities.

    • by Anonymous Coward on Monday January 25, 2016 @10:23AM (#51365255)

      Yes, it's hip especially in Europe to have anti-US sentiment. But of course the real reason for all this is not about stopping NSA spying. It's that politicians abroad don't know any better about tech one way or another any better than US politicians, and if they hear ICANN is vulnerable to spying, then what is really happening is that they want their piece of the pie. The point of the anti-US sentiment is to make people in Europe believe that this is solely an American phenomena, and so it couldn't happen there. It's always entertaining to watch citizens of those countries gasp in shock when they hear their country does the same things, and is often in fact in cooperation with the NSA.

      • by chihowa ( 366380 ) on Monday January 25, 2016 @12:53PM (#51366561)

        It's always entertaining to watch citizens of those countries gasp in shock when they hear their country does the same things, and is often in fact in cooperation with the NSA.

        Go back and reread the responses, as there are plenty on this site alone. They don't gasp in shock; they rationalize, excuse, and find a way to blame it on the US.

        Because...

        The point of the anti-US sentiment is to make people in Europe believe that this is solely an American phenomena, and so it couldn't happen there.

        It's working. It's popular to point to Americans as small-minded, but it's really a universally human attribute.

        • by HiThere ( 15173 )

          Depends on what you mean. Americans (and I think I include most Canadians here, though not Mexicans) then to forget about other countries most of the time because they live such a long distance away from them. "Everybody speaks the same language" You don't have this so much in Europe, because it isn't true. And it does carry over into personal habits. Many from the US seem unwilling to understand that other people don't speak English...so if they aren't understood the first time they'll just say it aga

    • Smells like anti-US idiocy,

      Good. We're all about being anti US-idiocy.

    • by HiThere ( 15173 )

      Well....back before the ICANN became a subsidiary of the US govt. it did a better job. Of course, this doesn't mean we'll get back the old board members, or even the original charter. And, to be fair, the Internet has become a lot more a magnet for power hungry schemers than it used to be.

      It's not clear to me that it was "joining" the US government that caused the degradation so much as the "palace revolution" that resulted in/from older members leaving the board.

  • by QuietLagoon ( 813062 ) on Monday January 25, 2016 @09:17AM (#51364975)

    ...While the changing of hands should not alter the way ICANN operates...

    If the parties involved did not want the way ICANN operates to change, then why have they gone through such an effort in order to effect this change in the pecking order for ICANN?

    .
    fwiw, the efforts to pry ICANN away from US control have been going on since long before the NSA became a household name....

    • by gavron ( 1300111 ) on Monday January 25, 2016 @09:52AM (#51365109)

      ----before you Reply/criticize, please read at least one of the links I posted below - thank you ---

      Change in ICANN has been impossible to come by. The only "representative of the people", Karl Aurbach
      tried for years to get some accountability, some rationality, some responsibility. Instead all he got was
      stonewalled. It makes for interesting but not hopeful reading that ICANN is ready to manage a global
      network with ANY sort of eye to "the stakeholders."

      It's like letting the MAFIAA manage the Internet. Their goals are to please THEIR stakeholders, which
      do not include those of us who enjoy Pandora, Spotify, Hulu, Bittorrent, etc.

      Here's that "interesting reading" I promised. It's a small but representative subset.
      http://www.circleid.com/posts/... [circleid.com]
      http://www.theregister.co.uk/2... [theregister.co.uk]
      http://archive.icann.org/en/co... [icann.org]
      https://w2.eff.org/Infrastruct... [eff.org]

      Ehud

    • by mysidia ( 191772 )

      I believe the prying away ICANN is very much a for-profit endeavor.

      IMO; ICANN is somewhat shady, and not to be trusted with full control over the domain name system. They have already begun to show their true colors with the "Vanity TLDs" enterprise.

      Which, by the way, does not seem to be in the public interest --- but purely a money-making idea for ICANN.

      By the time the public understands the negative consequences of this; it will be too late, AFTER they have already allowed ICANN to become independ

      • by gmack ( 197796 )

        The extra TLDs were a mistake. We really needed fewer TLDs, not more. At least if everything were under it's own country code it would be obvious what country's laws apply to disputes about who should own it but instead we have a legal mess.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday January 25, 2016 @09:18AM (#51364979)

    Switch ICANN to the UN, and things will be even worse. The US can be shamed by international pressure. The UN? Well, you are going to see censorship on a religious and political level that would have never existed before. Groups of political dissidents (think Kurds) would have their websites hunted down and destroyed, just like CP sites are now.

    No thanks... the US isn't perfect, but that is a far better owner than repressive nations who will use the Internet to push their own political will and extreme agenda.

    • by cfalcon ( 779563 )

      This is absolutely a concern. The canary here will be to see if ICANN starts fucking with "hate groups". If they get away with that, expect to have work around them, because the only thing they'll be willing to deal with is pictures of cats and other uncontroversial topics.

  • by malx ( 7723 ) on Monday January 25, 2016 @09:21AM (#51364991)

    The story summary wrongly gives the impression that the US is forever interfering in ICANN's affairs. This is simply not true: while it does retain an oversight function, it has never used that to interfere in ICANN's operational matters. It does have ultimate oversight authority, and so is in theory the final recourse if ICANN should go off the rails. The question is, if the US gives that up, who gets the final say?

    ICANN is a body that has power that Slashdotters should care about. It writes rules into the contracts it has with top level domain Registries, rules that individual domain registrants must obey. Mostly these rules are technical not policy, but that is changing. ICANN has long required domain registrants to submit to ICANN's Uniform Dispute Resolution Policy, which allows trademark owners to claim domains that are said to infringe their trademarks, even though the UDRP does not provide all the defences to trademark that ordinary law offers.

    The UDRP is pretty much a settled part of ICANN's scope. But there are plenty of other interests (copyright owners, child protection campaigns, law enforcement groups from around the world) that would like ICANN to impose the rules they prefer on domain registrants too. And they're actively lobbying ICANN right now, have been for years.

    Under US oversight, there was a principled commitment to the openness of the Internet, and the possibility of an ultimate recourse to Congress if these lobbyists capture ICANN. When that oversight disappears, it will be crucial to have enshrined in ICANN's constitution effective and enforceable means to constrain ICANN from scope creep. Arguments about that are what is delaying the removal of US oversight, with intellectual property lawyers and foreign governments fighting hard to give ICANN a broad Mission that allows it to implement their demands.

    • and the possibility of an ultimate recourse to Congress

      You are kidding, right? The 95% of the world living outside of the USA have absolutely no recourse to your Congress.

      • by mysidia ( 191772 )

        The 95% of the world living outside of the USA have absolutely no recourse to your Congress.

        I think that's not actually important the MERE THREAT that there is a recourse to congress is an influencer against pursuing courses that would be against their mission and hurt the internet as a whole, because it means the ICANN board does not have absolute power; It does not matter that Congress has not actually used that power, as long as they know they can be subject to account, then they may not engage in

        • to me, it sounds more like the threat of the recourse to congress is an influencer FOR pursuing courses that would hurt the internet as a whole.

          • by tnk1 ( 899206 )

            Except it hasn't happened that way. The Internet is here and operates in a manner in which everyone is trying to protect. So, what is the solution to protecting it? Change how it has worked. In other words, fix something not broken.

            Seriously, ICANN is one of the things that really isn't much of a concern right now, but of course, we need to alter it because someone may feel disenfranchised or something. The disenfranchised meaning corporations and various interest groups that might well work to make th

            • Except it hasn't happened that way.

              What makes you think so? Doesn't the US have more TLD than other countries?
              And anyways, ever heard of prevention? We want to make sure shit won't happen in the future because the US would have to power to do so.

              The Internet is here and operates in a manner in which everyone is trying to protect. So, what is the solution to protecting it? Change how it has worked.
              In other words, fix something not broken.

              You are making a fallacy here. Getting the control of the internet out of the US is not about "protecting" it. It's a matter of independence and national security. Other countries can't rely on a single country for this critical task.

      • by PolygamousRanchKid ( 1290638 ) on Monday January 25, 2016 @10:05AM (#51365169)

        The 95% of the world living outside of the USA have absolutely no recourse to your Congress.

        That is not true . . . US Congress will accept bribes from anyone in the world, independent of where they live.

      • by swb ( 14022 )

        And? You're implying they have local recourse to their own governments, which I think is a dubious idea for the most part. Even those that have democratically elected governments don't have much recourse, due to even worse corruption than we have here.

        • Even if there is only a single country which is more democratic and less corrupt than the US, the US must not have control of the internet.

          • by tnk1 ( 899206 )

            Why not? It hasn't done a particularly bad job of it so far.

            So what if the NSA spies on people? So does every other intelligence agency. The problem with the NSA isn't "control of the internet", which the US has done a frankly superb job at (by staying out of the way), it is that many of the big Internet companies like Facebook are US-owned and based. "Control" over the Internet isn't going to change any of that unless these other countries want to use their newfound power to force everyone to play by t

    • by T.E.D. ( 34228 )
      You make a pretty strong argument, but you totally lost me here:

      Under US oversight, there was ... the possibility of an ultimate recourse to Congress if these lobbyists capture ICANN

      The current US Congress has trouble passing routine legislation (farm bill, highway bill, debt ceiling, etc), and saying it has been "captured by lobbyists" if anything underplays their influence. Asking this Congress for help would be like calling in a pack of wolves to get a fox out of your henhouse. In the unlikely event they actually get anything accomplished, its a pretty good bet you won't like it.

      • by tnk1 ( 899206 )

        Congress has shitty solutions, true. However, the real threat is ICANN board members and execs having to sit through Congressional hearings. I assure you, the threat of Congress is enough to keep people in line. People *hate* dealing with Congress.

  • Is this about the claims that the USA got an unfair amount of IPV4 address space early on and should give some of it to the third world countries in case they might need it some day?

    • Why would third world countries need lots of IPv4 space? They are rolling out native IPv6 to end users, SNI pretty much means web hosting no longer needs piles of IPv4 Addresses. IPv4 needs to go away.

      We allocated IPv4 on first come first served basis, it's a limited resource and redistributing it is not worth the hassle.

  • This is a bad idea (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Karmashock ( 2415832 ) on Monday January 25, 2016 @10:09AM (#51365177)

    Yes yes... its very trendy to hate on the US. But please consider the alternative here. The United Nations? Most nations in the world have a less ironclad notion of free speech than the Americans. To the contrary, the vast majority of governments desire radically restricted speech.

    And surrendering ICANN to these people is likely to result in new rules put in place to restrict speech more than anything.

    Keep in mind, why do these countries want authority over ICANN? What is it doing or not doing that they don't like? What would the US government be saying yes or no to here that has them so upset?

    To those that will cite snowden in all situations, keep in mind that the push to get ICANN under international control predated that and regardless taking ICANN from the US won't change any of that anyway.

    The entire thing is likely to be a shitshow.

    That said, the good news is that ICANN just controls the DNS registries... so... worst case, if the whomevers fuck it up beyond repair we can just bypass their fuckwitted tables and use our own.

    • Did you read the summary?

      by the end of September, ICANN could instead be in the hands of businesses, individuals, and multiple global governments.

      Your idea of

      the alternative here. The United Nations?

      Is not supported by anything in the article or summary. The United Nations are vastly different from an idea of "multiple global governments", particularly when those multiple governments are sharing power with businesses and individuals as well.

      • hah... you think anything you said made any material difference?

        Name a government in the world with a stronger track record of protecting speech. So you put it in the hands of multiple governments that have bad to okay records? Yippy.

        And it gets worse because you also cited corporations which also have bad records. Look at Twitter. Look at Facebook. Look at Reddit. Corporations are just as bad if not worse.

        whatever... you want to stick your dick in that food processor... go for it. IF its a shitshow, then w

        • you think anything you said made any material difference?

          Yes, because ICANN will be managed by a lot of non-governmental forces. In fact, national governments will be bit players in the deal at most. You claimed that the UN was going to take over, which is 100% false.

          And it gets worse because you also cited corporations which also have bad records. Look at Twitter. Look at Facebook. Look at Reddit.

          What are you trying to prove with that list? None of them have had an impact on ICANN so far, and what do any of them have to gain by changing how it operates in the future?

          Corporations are just as bad if not worse.

          ICANN has been run by corporate / profit interests for some time now.

          • I already addressed non-government forces. You citing them again suggests that you didn't actually read what I said which renders you opinion of my position generally meaningless.

            • I read what you said. Your first comment - which was modded up for no clear reason - you declared that the US government relinquishing control of ICANN would be a bad thing because you believed it would next be taken over by the UN. I then pointed out that even the summary of the article contradicted that claim (which you presumably produced from your own posterior) of yours. Only after that did you acknowledge that indeed it is not a government who will be taking over control of ICANN.

              At some point fu
              • No, I said "the UN?" Notice the question mark... it was an example.

                And it doesn't matter as has been explained previously... your rebuttal that it would be various governments is not any different from the UN because ultimately that's all the UN is in the first place. And giving things over to various corporations isn't any better either as I pointed out because corporations will censor people if it is in their financial interests to do it.

                I love your final statement that the US has no control over it... th

                • No, I said "the UN?" Notice the question mark... it was an example.

                  And I reminded you that the UN has nothing to do with it. In other words you fell on your face on that one.

                  your rebuttal that it would be various governments is not any different from the UN because ultimately that's all the UN is in the first place.

                  No, it is vastly different. The UN is an intergovernmental agency. If the UN was involved then decisions would be made by committees at the UN. As the UN is not involved, they have nothing to do with it. Just because there could, potentially, be some national governments involved that are also UN member states is nothing at all the same as the UN itself being involved.

                  Or do you really know tha

                  • Being obtuse is not a rebuttal. My last statement is sustained until you have a substantive response.

                    • There was nothing obtuse about my comment. I quoted you directly and responded directly. I showed specifically where your assumptions lacked merit and were disconnected from reality. If you don't have anything to say, you can feel free to just not hit the reply button, nobody is forcing you to put your lack of understanding on display.
                    • Nah, I addressed the the UN issue and you're refusing to acknowledge it. That's just obtuse.

                      Position sustained.

                    • Nah, I addressed the the UN issue and you're refusing to acknowledge it.

                      No, you did not. Addressing it would entail admitting that you were completely disconnected from reality when you claimed that the UN was going to take over management of ICANN. Instead you attempted to dodge it. Your comments are still back there, and they plainly show exactly that.

                      If you actually said something meaningful that was somehow connected to reality, I would be happy to acknowledge it. You have not done that yet, nor have you shown any reason to expect that you will later.

                      Position sustained.

                      What position

                    • I do not dispute that he has declared victory, I merely dispute any notion that he has said anything that would render such a declaration to be a valid assessment of reality.
    • by Bengie ( 1121981 )

      That said, the good news is that ICANN just controls the DNS registries

      DNS and IP blocks. They could not only mess up DNS entries, but IP routing. Of course no one really needs to listen to them in the first place, but they are the current source of correct data, and a democracy does not work well with this sort of system. You need a single authoritative source, otherwise you get Internet islands or worse.

      • by HiThere ( 15173 )

        I, personally, have always favored multiple sources of "correct" data. You'd need to change IP routing rules a bit, though, to make it work. You'd need to be able to specify a hierarchy of "trusted sources" that would be tried in order, and possibly something on the order of a search engine the resolve things in cases of conflict.

        Clearly my idea, even if fleshed out into workable form, would have more overhead. It would also be more secure against centralized control. Think of it as a compromise between

    • And surrendering ICANN to these people is likely to result in new rules put in place to restrict speech more than anything.

      That seems very likely to me, and it's worrisome.

      Moreover, I really don't see the problem with ICANN staying right where it is. If it ain't broke, don't fix it. If there were evidence that the system for assigning names and numbers is broken, that would be a different story, but it seems like this move is all about "fixing" a non-problem for political reasons... and doing it in a way that risks creating real problems.

      • Its petty tyrants seeking power over things they don't understand for the sake of the power itself. Nothing more.

        They're children and rather than being treated seriously they should be patted on the head and distracted with a shinny babble that will change the subject or a little candy.

  • by superwiz ( 655733 ) on Monday January 25, 2016 @10:25AM (#51365271) Journal
    There were no revelations made about NSA which were not already suspected by non-general-public security specialists. Who else would administer it? UN? Most of its members would look to put in rules in place to increase censorship. US still remains one of the few places in the Western Civilization where speech is free by law. Even if it means offensive speech or speech which is not politically correct or speech which is "unethical" by some other subjective standard. Releasing control of ICANN from the US government would mean giving up the tenant of entirely free speech.
  • by clay_buster ( 521703 ) on Monday January 25, 2016 @10:28AM (#51365277) Homepage
    I really can't see how this is going to make ICANN more responsive or more trustworthy. We'll just end up with a bunch of questionable actors pushing their own (more restrictive) agendas. Look at how Iceland and Japan have been trying to stack the International Whaling bodies or what happens when you put Saudi Arabia and China on Human Rights boards. Some NGOs are sock puppets for their governments or corporations. European governments aren't any more trustowrthy. They drank from the same data tap trough as the US government.

    You may not like having a US agency be a key player but at least you only have one player to monitor/harass/attack. Now you will end up with a whole bunch of players from non-accountable organizations.
    • by JustNiz ( 692889 )

      >> Now you will end up with a whole bunch of players from non-accountable organizations.

      Totally agree. Well said. If I had mod points you would get them.

  • You really shouldn't be concerned about the NSA, or even the Dept. of Commerce. I'm more concerned that the ICANN leadership thinks that anyone outside of their inner circle doesn't matter:

    http://www.theregister.co.uk/2... [theregister.co.uk]

    http://www.theregister.co.uk/2... [theregister.co.uk]

    No way in hells do I want these clowns running around without adult supervision...

  • Where are the issues published about how ICANN does business? And why are the issues, issues?
  • First of all, ICANN has been motivated by profit for some time. If you don't agree, then try to come up with an alternate explanation for why they decided - in spite of significant protest against - to start selling gTLDs to the highest bidders.

    Second, the US government is owned by corporate America regardless. The crowning achievement of this was likely the 2010 "health care" bill, which is a solid contender for the tile of the largest corporate handout in the history of government.
  • If ever there was a good reason to use distributed blockchain database model, IP address and domain name ownership would be one of them.

  • The US Federal government isn't as pro-free speech as it used to be (nor as it is supposed to be.) But stack the US government against any other government in terms of "stay out of the way of free speech" and there isn't anyone, anywhere with a better track record You can register a website to complain about the US Federal Government (whether you're American or not) and ICANN isn't going to stop you.

    Face it. The EU will screw this up. Europe will screw this up. The UN will screw this up.

    There's nobody be

  • by RogueWarrior65 ( 678876 ) on Monday January 25, 2016 @11:48AM (#51365961)

    Seriously, can anyone point to any systemic problem with the way ICANN operates now that seriously adversely affects the way the Internet works?
    Saying, "Because those evil, greedy, capitalist running-dog Americans," is not a valid argument.

  • Nothing is stopping any country not happy with ICANN's control from using their own root nameserver, or an alternate one [wikipedia.org]. It's almost like the technology was designed to facilitate it in the first place.
  • by PPH ( 736903 ) on Monday January 25, 2016 @12:33PM (#51366351)

    The US management of ICANN has largely been hands off. And NSA surveillance of Internet traffic is not dependent on who manages its address space. So that will continue.

    What will happen, if ICANN is placed under the authority of weaker management, is that every little tin pot dictator and authoritarian regime will attempt to impose their authority over their corner of it. And instead of ICANNs current policy of keeping local autocrats at arms length, they will be forced into supporting their authority.

  • Translation: While this is never going to happen

  • The USA is by far the worst country to run ICANN, with the exception of all the others.

    I mean sure, the USA spy on everyone, but then everyone else has tried to get into that game as much as possible anyway through data sharing and so on.

    The US will take down things at the behest of the copyright cartel, but they still allow things which other countries outlaw on various "moral" grounds. So if you don't like the USA's takedowns, you won't like anyone else's either.

    And the list goes on.

    Do I like what the US

  • I don't see the big deal. The only thing they really control is registered blocks of IP addresses. As far as domain names... it's since different DNS services can compete side by side; anyone can come up with an alternative system.

    One can easily alias domain names from one system into their own top level domain like:
    microsoft.com.icann

    Furthermore programs could then have search paths for multiple domain system. The system is easily extended. An improvement on this would be if web sites that instead did some

And on the seventh day, He exited from append mode.

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