20 April 2014

IANA, Internet Governance, ICANN power-grab

Storm  coming -- better batten down the hatches! -- 

"Everyone needs to understand that ICANN as an organization has a very strong interest in gaining control of both the technical-operational and the policy making functions. Controlling both makes ICANN a far more powerful, and far less accountable, entity. Like all organizations, ICANN wants to achieve autonomy and strengthen itself. Countervailing forces in the Internet community will be needed to keep it in check."--Milton Mueller

If the Stakeholders Already Control the Internet, Why NETmundial and the IANA Transition?: " . . . .As we initiate what will almost certainly be a contentious global debate, it is worth pausing a moment to ask whether it is an inevitable stage of Internet governance evolution or a manufactured crisis designed to enhance autonomy and diminish accountability. ICANN has played a hyperactive role in bringing events to this point, and it remains to be seen when the dust finally settles whether it will regret trading the rather benign scrutiny of the U.S. for an oversight regime that may well be far more complicated and politicized."--Philip S. Corwin

"...At some point, a transition to an international system was required. On the other hand, ICANN may not necessarily be in a good position to take over this responsibility (as anxious as it is to do so). Many are worried that ICANN is beholden to the domain name registry industry, who pay large fees to ICANN for the privilege of managing (and reselling) top level domain systems. When ICANN recently opened up new gTLDs it reaped a huge profit. If you accept the maxim that “he who has the gold makes the rules” the transition to ICANN control may actually be about a transition to corporate control through ICANN. ICANN is often thought of as unaccountable. It’s multi-stakeholder model of governance attempts to bring all parties to the table. But that’s an awfully big table.  In the end, the ICANN executive group usually takes the initiative and drives the agenda—and without the check of the NTIA (however modest it has been in the past) they may have greater leeway to do as they please...."-- Paul Rosenzweig in Lawfare

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