Bill should probably be called “Protecting U.S. Control of the Internet”.
Senator Ted Cruz and Representative Sean Duffy introduced the Protecting Internet Freedom Act in Congress today.
The act would forbid the National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) from allowing the Internet Assigned Numbers Authority (IANA) functions contract to expire.
The internet community is currently working through a process of letting the contract expire and transitioning authority, essentially to ICANN.
A key benefit to no longer having perceived U.S. control is that other countries won’t try to “splinter” the internet.
Still, Cruz and Duffy say letting the contract expire could lead to regimes like Russia and China somehow taking over the internet.
That’s not possible the way the transition is structured. There are many stakeholders in ICANN, and governments are just one piece of it. Russia and China are just pieces of that piece.
It’s also a bit ironic that they’re concerned about countries censoring the internet. The best example of the U.S. government using its “veto” power was delaying the launch of .xxx. That was censorship.
Update: I think Michele Neylon sums up the issue well:
The entire thing is predicated on an intentional misinterpretation of both the US relationship with ICANN and the IANA functions, as well as a visceral rejection of any policies tabled by the outgoing Obama administration.
Jeff Schneider says
To think for one second that the awesome power of controlling The Domain Name System, otherwise known as ICANN is NOT a National Security Issue is ludicrous. It most definitely is a national security issue. Ted Cruz is right about not releasing control of ICANN to questionable Owners. Andrew you may want to rethink this ?
Gratefully, Jeff Schneider (Contact Group) (Metal Tiger) (Former Rockefeller IBEC Marketing Analyst/Strategist) (Licensed CBOE Commodity Hedge Strategist) (Domain Master ) https://www.UseBiz.com
You are absolutely right about that. I have always said it, and I am a firm believer that ceding control of The Domain Name System or ICANN is downright crazy. Everybody seem to forget how the Internet came about to begin with, and it is worth protecting in my view.
The recent events around the world should be a wakeup call. Security, whether National or otherwise, is paramount here.
And separation of US control is in turn a “National Security” issue for every other country.
>”A key benefit to no longer having perceived U.S. control is that other countries won’t try to “splinter” the internet.”
Total absolute lying pretextual nonsense used as a mantra to sell the lie, which apparently you have bought hook, line and sinker and been duped by. Since it’s inception this bill of goods was normally referred to as the (empty, lying) threat to “Balkanize” the Internet.
“Give up, or we’ll break up!”
And I’ve already pointed out before in various places that even Michael Berkens injected some basic common sense into that nonsense when he pointed out in a Sherpa show that such “regimes” making such threats can get what they want and still “splinter” and “Balkanize” later for whatever purpose.
Oh, but there’s more lately (do tell):
It seems the folks who have been pushing this lying pretextual nonsense all along can’t keep it straight and “stay on message” anymore, and are now contradicting themselves, so you’re also a bit out of date in repeating it, Andrew.
“Cruz touts bill as ‘last chance’ to delay internet domain handoff”:
(http : // thehill . com /policy/technology/282009-cruz-touting-bill-as-last-chance-to-delay-internet-domain-handoff)
>”Last week, Democratic Sen. Brian Schatz (Hawaii) said the GOP position on the transition is hard to understand.
“I think they’ve got themselves twisted in knots on this one,” he said. “The governments that oppose this transition are primarily China and Russia.”
Oops, really? You don’t say?
Funny, what happened to that supremely touted threat to “Balkanize” and “splinter” the Internet if we don’t do it? Lions and tiger and bears…
>”Still, Cruz and Duffy say letting the contract expire could lead to regimes like Russia and China somehow taking over the internet.”
Yeah, sure, nothing like that or a bad enough fraction of it could ever happen in this world.
And let’s not forget that Bill Clinton came out as opposing such a “transition” for the same reason just a short time ago…
Joseph Peterson says
Domainers have a very small range of influence. International policy is a wee bit outside it. No use having an opinion on this issue … in my opinion.
Aaron Strong says
Seems odd that China and Russia will have more of a stake than United States Congress…If that is not a security issue, I don’t know what is.
Dave Wrixon says
It has to make you relunctantly admit that Trump was not the biggest idiot standing for nomination.
Dave Wrixon says
It also shows why the educational failure in the US allowed him to win the nomination.
John Berryhill says
Oh, they’re educated. It’s just that they are educated from a book written by people who didn’t know where the sun goes at night.
Joseph Peterson says
Chiming in where politics is concerned is a bit like sticking my hand into a meat grinder while it’s spinning, but oh well …
That’s not accurate. Insofar as Trump is popular in the USA, it’s because Americans follow TV – not religious leaders or the Bible. Donald Trump received a huge amount of coverage from contemporary media. And it’s TV, far more than the school system or books, that actually forms people’s opinions.
The fact is, Trump received only 14% of the Republican vote in Utah, where 57% of the population identifies as “very religious” (#2 nationally behind Mississippi at 59%). And it’s no accident that 1 of Trump’s most vehement critics – Mitt Romney, the previous Republican nominee, who ran against Obama in 2012 – is a devout Mormon.
Interestingly enough, the guy who invented electric television – Philo Farnsworth – was an Idaho Mormon as well. But it wasn’t his religious upbringing that paved the way for Donald Trump. No, it’s the mass media built upon the scientist’s invention. As everybody concedes, Donald Trump has exploited TV attention better than his rivals.
Just to preempt questions, I’m an atheist who refuses to vote.
Andrew Allemann says
I have yet to hear one scenario in which China or Russia could get their way with the internet post transition.
ICANN is striving to be a ultra rich organization that answers to no country and have their policies be bought by the country that pays them the most money. Policies will be changed to whatever China wants simply because they will send money to a private bank account for the CEO, and it will be perfectly legal, since they will answer to no country.
I don’t like the Ted Cruz but I am really wondering how this pans out because as I feel the US is best suited to oversee ICANN I also feel ICANN has outgrown the US. So certainly if ICANN wants to proceed as an international UN type of entity that may work. But I am imagining an ICANN that is controlled by Russia or China in the same way as it is here in the US and you just cannot see that happening. I may just have to become a #cruzmissle
Let us not forget that the US Dept. of Commerce blocked big price increases for .com registrations after ICANN did it’s lap dog act.
The US oversight is not democratic, and it cannot be permanent, but greed is too rampant in ICANN to release the few bonds that remain.
Perhaps soon the Internet will be able to crowd source it’s own governance. That would be democratic, ICANN is not.
Andrew Allemann says
Note that the U.S. government connection to the .com contract won’t end with the NTIA agreement.
True, but the contract ends in a few years. The next one could be hunting season on .com owners.