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A View from David Appell

U.S. Insists on Internet Control

I’m all in favor of the internationalization of the Internet, so I was somewhat dismayed to read about the U.S.’s insistence on retaining control of the main Internet routers. “We will not agree to the U.N. taking over the management…

  • September 30, 2005

I’m all in favor of the internationalization of the Internet, so I was somewhat dismayed to read about the U.S.’s insistence on retaining control of the main Internet routers.

“We will not agree to the U.N. taking over the management of the Internet,” said Ambassador David Gross, the U.S. coordinator for international communications and information policy at the State Department. “Some countries want that. We think that’s unacceptable.”
Sure, the U.S. and its minions have done a good job so far, but the Net has progressed a great deal since the early days and it’s time (if not now, when?) for truly international governance for a international network–it’s a matter of basic fairness and inclusion. Then there’s a little numbering problem to deal with:
Some countries have been frustrated that the United States and European countries that got on the Internet first gobbled up most of the available addresses required for computers to connect, leaving developing nations with a limited supply to share.

But as it does so often these days on so may treaties, the United States insists on going its own way and exerting its own power. Someday, I suspect, we’re going to wish we had played a little nicer.

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