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ICANN Writes US Government Requesting Independence

Zonk posted more than 6 years ago | from the very-polite-request dept.

Government 131

Combat Wombat writes with word that IP address and domain name overseer ICANN has put in a request to the US government, asking to be freed from ties to the United States. A 'lengthy' report was sent to the US Dept. of Commerce, and covers the numerous steps the organization has already completed along the road to independence. The BBC reports that a meeting will be held soon in response to the report, a reaction to the expected end of US control. "The meeting marks the half-way point for the Joint Project Agreement (JPA) under which ICANN was tasked to comply with a series of 'responsibilities' deemed necessary for its release from official oversight. The JPA grew out of the original Memorandum of Understanding that established Icann and signalled the beginning of the end for US control."

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131 comments

From the Office of His Imperial Majesty (3, Funny)

elrous0 (869638) | more than 6 years ago | (#22165894)

Dear ICANNN,

No.

Sincerely,
George W. Bush

Re:From the Office of His Imperial Majesty (5, Insightful)

Shakrai (717556) | more than 6 years ago | (#22166016)

Ya know, as easy as it is to take potshots at Dubya, I think you've largely missed a legitimate concern.

So ICANN wants to be released from oversight by the United States. Great. I bet that makes a lot of people around here happy. What's it going to be replaced with exactly? Do you really want an ICANN without any oversight?

Say what you will about the United States and the current arrangement, but at least at the end of the day ICANN is responsible to SOMEONE. That 'someone' is in turn responsible to 300,000,000 Americans. While 300,000,000 != the whole population of Earth, it's a hellva lot better then ICANN being responsible to no one in my book.

Re:From the Office of His Imperial Majesty (1)

S.O.B. (136083) | more than 6 years ago | (#22166496)

I agree. Until some international or "country neutral" form of oversight can be put in place it's not a good idea to arbitrarily remove the oversight that it currently has. Regardless of what the tinfoil hat people might think of the current arrangement.

Lol : "some international" or "country neutral" (2, Insightful)

da5idnetlimit.com (410908) | more than 6 years ago | (#22166648)

U.N.

Largest body of countries, International.

Now, if you grew wary of the american policies concerning ICAAN, get ready for bitchslapping at a worldwide level.

Re:Lol : "some international" or "country neutral" (4, Insightful)

readin (838620) | more than 6 years ago | (#22166906)

U. N. is "international" but it is hardly "country neutral". Just ask anybody from Taiwan.

Re:Lol : "some international" or "country neutral" (1)

sherms (15634) | more than 6 years ago | (#22170454)

Hasn't this happened before? When the Settlers of America broke away from England??

Sorry. I find some Irony in this. America Started it, and now England is heading up the revolution??

Anyone else find Irony in this??

Personally I'm neutral, but I'll sit in grand stand with my popcorn, hotdog and Beer and just watch..

Re:Lol : "some international" or "country neutral" (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22169950)

"get ready for bitchslapping at a worldwide level."

Ok great! But where does U.N. come in to play?

Re:From the Office of His Imperial Majesty (3, Interesting)

Captain Splendid (673276) | more than 6 years ago | (#22167290)

it's not a good idea to arbitrarily remove the oversight that it currently has.

Okay, I'll bite. I've been hearing this argument for a while, but nobody mentions what form this oversight really takes. It also begs another question: How useful is this oversight? Can it do anything about the US government and the telcos working hand in hand to wiretap the shit out of the internet? Can it do anything about the telco lobbies who want to bend network neutrality to their own profitable ends?

If losing ICANN oversight is such a big deal, make your case. It seems like the internet's pretty much fucked either way, so how useful are they anyway?

Re:From the Office of His Imperial Majesty (4, Interesting)

Shakrai (717556) | more than 6 years ago | (#22167624)

Can it do anything about the US government and the telcos working hand in hand to wiretap the shit out of the internet

Exactly what would you have ICANN do about this? It's the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers. It's most important role is to manage the dns root and address allocations in such a way that the end users don't conflict with each other.

What exactly is ICANN to do if AT&T decides to let the NSA splice into some fiber? Are you going to blame the ITU for wiretapping of the POTS network? Do you really think the United States is the only country that wiretaps on the internet?

I'm probably making your point here, but the counter-argument is that if ICANN is so useless why are people in such an uproar about it? Somebody has to manage the dns root and ip address allocations. Beyond those two functions, pretty much any country that's connected to the internet can do whatever they want with the portions of it inside of their own borders.

Let's assume the US did try and assert authority over the internet. How would it do that exactly?

Re:From the Office of His Imperial Majesty (1)

Captain Splendid (673276) | more than 6 years ago | (#22167902)

Read my post again. I never asked ICANN to do anything. My point was, how precious and difficult is their oversight, exactly, when, as far as I (and, it seems, many here) can see, the problems and challenges facing the internet as we know it are completely unrelated to ICANN, and several orders of magnitude more important?

Re:From the Office of His Imperial Majesty (1)

rs79 (71822) | more than 6 years ago | (#22169946)

" What exactly is ICANN to do if AT&T decides to let the NSA splice into some fiber? "

Exactly.

" Are you going to blame the ITU for wiretapping of the POTS network?

Yeah, actually I'd expect Bob Shaw to be right there with a pair of side cutters.

" Let's assume the US did try and assert authority over the internet. How would it do that exactly? "

They'd do things like veto .XXX because Karl Rove promised this as a poltical favour to the Southern Baptist Convention. You know, stuff like that.

Re:From the Office of His Imperial Majesty (1)

Shakrai (717556) | more than 6 years ago | (#22170460)

They'd do things like veto .XXX because Karl Rove promised this as a poltical favour to the Southern Baptist Convention. You know, stuff like that.

Yeah, cuz there were no other arguments against .xxx, it was all Karl Rove. The .xxx TLD is a dumbass idea for a variety of reasons. Like putting the domain registers in charge of policing content. Many in the adult industry are opposed to it because they feel it will regulate their product to an "online ghetto". Many in the religous community are likewise opposed because they think it will "legitimatize" pornography (what, it's somehow more ligitimate if it ends in .xxx instead of .com?). Who defines pornography? Government? ICANN? Network Solutions or Godaddy? It's a completely arbitrary distinction and a pointless TLD to boot.

Bottom line: There are a lot of sound arguments against .xxx. I seriously hope you haven't based your whole case against US control over this one issue.

Re:From the Office of His Imperial Majesty (1)

readin (838620) | more than 6 years ago | (#22170154)

How useful is this oversight?

Difficult to know until the oversight gets removed. If oversight were removed who knows what ICANN would try? And if you say the leadership wouldn't try anything too bad, who knows what people would try to replace that leadership because of the things they could try?

US oversight seems good so far. 300 million Americans don't have much interest in doing weird things with ICANN, they just want their internet to work. That makes some issues easy to solve in a practical way. But if ICANN goes international, all kinds of issues of sovereignty will crop up that will be a mess to untangle and whose solutions in general will reflect how strong countries want things to be rather than how things are.

Re:From the Office of His Imperial Majesty (3, Insightful)

HangingChad (677530) | more than 6 years ago | (#22166518)

Ya know, as easy as it is to take potshots at Dubya...

I don't think this is limited to him and I don't think it means the rest of the world hates the US. I do think it says the rest of the world no longer trusts the US. And in some ways that's worse than hatred. It's definitely sad testimony to what we've become in the eyes of the rest of the world. Instead of being trusted to work cooperatively with other sovereign nations we've pretty much declared, by our actions if not by words, that our pursuit of terrorism trumps every other concern, legitimate or not.

And it's not just government actions. AT&T threatening to charge at both ends of the pipe and cooperating in warrant-less monitoring of internet and phone traffic on a massive scale. Several of the core ISP's threatening to block certain kinds of traffic. It could easily be a combination of corporate dickishness and the privacy insults we've foisted on the rest of the world and they're just tired of it.

Re:From the Office of His Imperial Majesty (1)

Jesus_666 (702802) | more than 6 years ago | (#22166808)

I don't think this is limited to him and I don't think it means the rest of the world hates the US. I do think it says the rest of the world no longer trusts the US. And in some ways that's worse than hatred. It's definitely sad testimony to what we've become in the eyes of the rest of the world. Instead of being trusted to work cooperatively with other sovereign nations we've pretty much declared, by our actions if not by words, that our pursuit of terrorism trumps every other concern, legitimate or not.

And it's not just government actions. AT&T threatening to charge at both ends of the pipe and cooperating in warrant-less monitoring of internet and phone traffic on a massive scale. Several of the core ISP's threatening to block certain kinds of traffic. It could easily be a combination of corporate dickishness and the privacy insults we've foisted on the rest of the world and they're just tired of it.
Quoted for truth. There is a whole lot of bullshit coming over from the States these days; political, legal and corporate.

Re:From the Office of His Imperial Majesty (0, Flamebait)

Shakrai (717556) | more than 6 years ago | (#22166826)

It's definitely sad testimony to what we've become in the eyes of the rest of the world

You'll brook no argument from me. It will take us decades to repair the damage that Bush's policies have wrought to our important alliances and friendships across the World. In less then eight years him and his neo-con cronies have managed to destroy 50 years of American foreign policy. 50 years of building cooperative alliances and institutions and now the rest of the World doesn't trust us.

It's not even limited to "Old Europe" either. I find it depressing that a majority of Brits now think that the United States is the biggest threat to World peace. Our most important ally, with whom we share a common culture, history and language.... and the majority of it's citizens no longer trust us. Thanks for that, Bush....

All that said though, the OP still seemed like a pretty cheap potshot. I don't really think Bush cares one way or another about ICANN. It was just an easy way to get a first post and some mod points I think. And I stand by my statements -- ICANN turned loose on the World with no accountability or oversight? Not a good idea....

Re:From the Office of His Imperial Majesty (1)

Penguinisto (415985) | more than 6 years ago | (#22169808)

Err, self-flagellation aside, you do know that every sovereign entity should not be trusted, by sheer dint of looking out for their own interests as top priority.

The "eyes of the world" doesn't (and shouldn't) mean bupkis. In any social circle, when you try to please everyone else as your main priority, you usually end up getting screwed by the group. Most of the heads that "the eyes of the world" are attached to are merely seeking ways of maximizing their own power and success - often at the cost of someone else's.

Until/Unless we can actually do away with nationalism entirely, and have one body that looks out for all of humanity in a way that insures personal freedom, maximizes individual opportunity, and keeps the peace...? Well, welcome to politics.

/P

s/pursuit of terrorism/corruption (1)

marcosdumay (620877) | more than 6 years ago | (#22170732)

s/pursuit of terrorism/corruption

Re:From the Office of His Imperial Majesty (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22167038)

It's better to you because you - I assume - happen to be one of those 300 million who feel that ICANN is somehow responsible to them (in reality, it's not, of course: it's responsible to your government, which you really don't have any say in). But even assuming that ICANN was responsible to you, it's easy for you to argue that this is better, of course: you only stand to lose if ICANN indeed becomes independent.

For everyone else, on the other hand - more than 95% of the world's population! -, the choice is between "independent" and "controlled by an entity (the US government) which is uncaring at best and openly hostile to our interests at worst". For us, it's an easy choice, too: an independent ICANN is better than one controlled by just one nation, representing less than 5 percent of the world's population who somehow think they're the Chosen Ones, the Master Race who shall reign over everyone else.

If you really were genuinely worried about an independent, unaccountable ICANN, you'd argue for it become a UN organisation, like UNESCO, UNICEF, the UNHCR and so on. But you're not going to do that, of course - noone on Slashdot is -, and the reason is that it's really just about keeping control for yourself.

If you're going to be a fascist fuckwad, at least have the decency to admit it.

Re:From the Office of His Imperial Majesty (1)

Shakrai (717556) | more than 6 years ago | (#22167496)

If you're going to be a fascist fuckwad, at least have the decency to admit it.

How about if you're going to throw around stuff like 'fascist fuckwad' and 'master race' that you have the balls to do it under your real name and not as an anonymous coward?

n reality, it's not, of course: it's responsible to your government, which you really don't have any say in

Really? Last time I checked I get to vote for two of the three branches of the Federal Government. Guess you are one of the cynical people that think voting doesn't matter.

Re:From the Office of His Imperial Majesty (1)

Schraegstrichpunkt (931443) | more than 6 years ago | (#22167184)

I think the idea is that sooner or later, the ITU or some other group of powermongers is going to claim "jurisdiction" over the Internet on the basis that they are a true "international" organization, and Internet governance will fragment---or worse, people will follow them and Internet protocols will shift from their current (relative) simplicity to something more like OSI or telephony "standards", which are governed more by politics and patent-license-revenue-grabbing than by ease of implementation.

Giving ICANN more independence takes the teeth out of these opportunists' claims to legitimacy.

Re:From the Office of His Imperial Majesty (1)

HiThere (15173) | more than 6 years ago | (#22171678)

ICANN has, in the past, proven totally untrustworthy.

They had a constitution that required that the board be publicly elected. They kept postponing the election until they got the US to step in and anoint them official without the need for election. They stonewalled FOI requests. They refused to accept public comment. The performed secretly when their charter required that they be open.

I'm all in favor of an independent ICANN...but only with a totally new board of directors. And open election held the same year. The original charter was pretty good, it just lacked enforcement mechanisms against a board that ignored it.

ICANN LOL ISP (1)

protolith (619345) | more than 6 years ago | (#22168772)

ICANN has freedom?

Re:ICANN LOL ISP (1)

LandDolphin (1202876) | more than 6 years ago | (#22170026)

Lol, That was Funny...

Won't happen. (4, Insightful)

morgan_greywolf (835522) | more than 6 years ago | (#22165908)

As much as it might be good for the Internet, it will never happen. ICANN is considered a strategic U.S. asset. Everyone seems to be forgetting that the Internet started out as a project of the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency. The government is not going to give up control that easily.

They only have control (1)

Nursie (632944) | more than 6 years ago | (#22165938)

As long as everyone else plays ball. It looks like they're starting to ask why they're playing ball these days.

OTOH I'm not sure freing ICANN from any nationality is as good an idea as scrapping it and creating a true multinational organisation from the ground up.

Re:They only have control (3, Insightful)

Smidge204 (605297) | more than 6 years ago | (#22166394)

I don't suppose you can elaborate on exactly WHY and HOW a multinational organization would be an improvement? ICANN is already run by a board of directors composed of people from all over the globe who represent their own international interests. It also takes advice both from a committee which represents even more governments from around the world and another committee that represents organizations and industries across the globe.

On top of that, the US government has little or not actual control over ICANN's daily oerations. The cat is out of the bag, sort of speak, and there is no way the US government can effectively control the internet as a whole even if it wanted to, since the rest of the world is sufficiently set up to operate without it - with the exception of content services based in the US, which are privately controlled anyway.

So other than the generic "USA sux" metality, what's the motivation for total globalization of ICANN's functions? What will this accomplish other than create another incompetent, ineffectual and political circle-jerk like the United Nations?
=Smidge=

Re:They only have control (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22166712)

What will this accomplish other than create another incompetent, ineffectual and political circle-jerk like the United Nations?

Would that be the same incompetent, ineffectual and political circle-jerk that has successfully managed the international phone system for decades? Telecoms is one area where the UN has more than proven itself.

It's really amazing how brainwashed Americans are when it comes to the UN. Sure, it's got significant problems, the same as any large organisation, but Americans seem to have been indoctrinated to the point where they think it's incompetence incarnate. Get a clue. Stop watching Fox News. It's really not that bad.

Re:They only have control (1)

Smidge204 (605297) | more than 6 years ago | (#22166966)

To say the International Telecommunication Union is part fo the UN is just as ignorant as saying ICANN is part fo the US government. The ITU was born from the UN but is not controlled by it, much like ICANN.

And you still haven't answered my question. If anything, you reinforced my point because ICANN is just as multinational as the ITU.
=Smidge=

Re:They only have control (1)

Schraegstrichpunkt (931443) | more than 6 years ago | (#22167690)

Furthermore, the ITU---and telecomms in general---aren't exactly known for good, simple (cheap to implement from scratch) protocol design. They tend to produce overcomplicated beasts like OSI [wikipedia.org] , GSM [3gpp.org] , and ASN.1 [imc.org] .

Why anyone in-the-know would want to leave Internet protocols in the hands of the telecomms is a mystery to me.

Re:They only have control (0, Flamebait)

daem0n1x (748565) | more than 6 years ago | (#22168184)

Yeah, here in Europe we all know how unsuccessful GSM is. Oh, the horror...

Get a clue.

Re:They only have control (1)

Schraegstrichpunkt (931443) | more than 6 years ago | (#22170522)

Yeah, here in Europe we all know how unsuccessful GSM is. Oh, the horror...

"Yeah, here in Europe we all know how unsuccessful Windows is. Oh, the horror..."

Have you actually worked with any of the GSM protocols? No?

GSM is insanely complex to implement and test, and the equipment and software to do so costs a fortune. This slows innovation, because small start-up companies can't afford to

Merely having a cell phone doesn't qualify you to talk about the technical quality---and by extension, the monetary and social cost---of GSM as specified and implemented.

ASN.1 is popular too. That doesn't make it well-designed or simple. If you have no idea what I'm talking about, search Google for 'ASN.1 vulnerability'.

In your own words:

Get a clue.

missing text from my previous comment (1)

Schraegstrichpunkt (931443) | more than 6 years ago | (#22170592)

This slows innovation, because small start-up companies can't afford to

... build a novel GSM stack, for example.

Re:They only have control (1)

daem0n1x (748565) | more than 6 years ago | (#22168074)

another incompetent, ineffectual and political circle-jerk like the United Nations?

Or, maybe like... your government?

Re:They only have control (1)

Smidge204 (605297) | more than 6 years ago | (#22168518)

The government does not control ICANN.

Read that a few times until it sinks in, then try answering my question.
=Smidge=

Re:They only have control (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22168598)

One possible benefit: ICANN would then be considered an NGO (non-governmental organization, think Red Cross) and not subject to local laws or civil jurisdictions. This might help them avoid implementing any morality/privacy/trademark laws that conform to the most restrictive of all their jurisdictions.

So, for example, Saudi Arabia couldn't sue ICANN to change its regulation of porn sites in Amsterdam.

Re:They only have control (1)

Smidge204 (605297) | more than 6 years ago | (#22169428)

ICANN doesn't regulate regulate content.

"Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers" - all they do is manage the DNS system and IP spaces. Morality/privacy/trademark issues only come up regarding domain names, and then it falls on the domain registrars anyway. ICANN just handles the technical stuff behind the scenes.
=Smidge=

Re:They only have control (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22170424)

ICANN doesn't regulate regulate content.

This is true, but with the new gTLD proposal process developing, issues of what constitutes an "obscene" domain name are coming before ICANN. For example, should they prevent the proposal of a hypothetical ".f*ck" TLD?

Also: Consider WHOIS. Many local privacy laws prohibit the disclosure of personal information via anonymous, publicly accessible database. If ICANN releases some (but not all) accredited registrars from this obligation, doesn't that create a competitive inequity? Lawyers drool when they see regulatory bodies that apply policy inconsistently.

And the current method for resolving conflicts (UDRP)is potentially vulnerable to being overturned by local civil jurisdictions. To my knowledge, this hasn't happened yet, but the first instance will be the last gasp for UDRP.

Re:Won't happen. (2, Informative)

farkus888 (1103903) | more than 6 years ago | (#22165992)

a long long time ago darpa was the only entity on the internet. then universities came on, and now its everybody. if you think darpa still has their mission critical systems on the internet you are mistaken. rolling out your own backbone has become simple and cheap enough that its worth it for them for the increased security that keeping their data out of the internet cloud provides.

Some generals were getting a tour of the Internet (2, Funny)

MichaelCrawford (610140) | more than 6 years ago | (#22166064)

... at one of the major backbone facilities. One of the generals asked the guide - who later related this to a class I took at Interop - how the MILNet could be separated from the rest of the Internet in times of war.

Before the guide could answer, another general replied:

Explosive bolts.

Re:Won't happen. (1)

morgan_greywolf (835522) | more than 6 years ago | (#22166088)

if you think darpa still has their mission critical systems on the internet you are mistaken.
I never said that. I just said that the U.S. government considers ICANN to be a strategic U.S. asset. The plan was always to relinquish complete government control of the Internet -- but I'm betting that they still don't want to give up their last vestiges of control -- ICANN.

Re:Won't happen. (1)

name*censored* (884880) | more than 6 years ago | (#22166144)

Wasn't the entire point of DARPA's internet to be so massively redundant that no single strike, no matter how large, could disrupt communications? How could it possibly be affordable to roll out a SECOND, completely separate system; given that the current internet already relies on existing infrastructure (telephone and cable lines)? More likely they're just using non-interoperable protocols and standalone servers on current infrastructure (or was that what you meant, if so, sorry..)

Re:Won't happen. (1)

IndustrialComplex (975015) | more than 6 years ago | (#22166634)

Actually it was designed because their current networks were unreliable. While robustness as a defense against an attack was planned, it wasn't the main focus. The suvivability was but one of many needs.

Re:Won't happen. (1)

farkus888 (1103903) | more than 6 years ago | (#22166666)

take a look at alcatel-lucent's long haul microwave equipment. its not cheap, but there is a market for building your own high availability secure long distance wireless backbone. I personally know of 2 projects that have done just that. even if that weren't the case, one look at our defense budget in america should prove any "affordability" arguments are not really valid. I'm sure some general's minesweeper/email client at his desk is on the internet, but they are not sending the "big red button" codes over the internet.

Re:Won't happen. (2, Insightful)

Slashidiot (1179447) | more than 6 years ago | (#22166150)

Thing is, if it does not happen, countries will end up having their own ICANN equivalents, and therefore, the role now played by ICANN would be played by some kind of group or comitee, formed by every ICANN equivalent in the world... and you'll end up with a UN equivalent, and getting as good performance as with the UN.

Re:Won't happen. (2, Informative)

VGPowerlord (621254) | more than 6 years ago | (#22168046)

I don't mean to sound rude, but do you actually understand where ICANN's power comes from? What ICANN inherited from IANA is this:
  1. Control of the IPv4 global distribution. IANA (now ICANN) assigns IP blocks to the 5 Regional Internet Registries: ARIN (North America), RIPE (Europe), APNIC (Asia and Australia), LACNIC (Central and South America), and AfriNIC (Africa).
  2. Control of the contents of the A root DNS server.

The control of one is used to keep control of the other. ICANN equivalents wouldn't have either of these, and thus not have either the power or the leverage to enforce their edicts.

Since ICANN controls both, wresting one of those away would be very difficult. It'd be better off trying to take away both at once. The problem then is... who would control them next?

Re:Won't happen. (1, Insightful)

Yvanhoe (564877) | more than 6 years ago | (#22166240)

Yeah, and PCs designs all come from IBM. So what ?
Who controls the ICANN is really of very minor importance today. But if US government thinks it controls it, it is a huge mistake. It would be easy for ISPs to roll their own DNS registries decorrelated from ICANN's. They simply don't do it for the benefit of interoperability. But as soon as the ICANN will to control becomes more inconvenient than marginal interoperability problems, ICANN will become instantly irrelevant.

Re:Won't happen. (2, Informative)

Jesus_666 (702802) | more than 6 years ago | (#22166608)

And if the USA ever decides to use ths asset agains someone, they instantly lose it. Europe is already immune; we could just switch over to ORSN and decide to ignore US standards on IP address usage. Other regions/countries can set up alternative DNS roots as well.

ICANN is not much of an asset because the USA have to cooperate with everyone anyway, lest they want the internet to fragment.

Re:Won't happen. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22167456)

As much as it might be good for the Internet, it will never happen.

I have this sneaking suspicion that it will be bad for ICANN to go independent.

Who's ICANN's competitor? Who's going to keep them in check? The first thing I can see happening is that domain prices will skyrocket, ICANN will be auctioning off domains for thousands of dollars and keeping most of the revenue. They'll continue to use their monopoly to raise their pad their pocket books on the arm of the consumer. I just don't want to see what an independent monopoly of domain names can do to the internet. I know what Microsoft has done to computers, and they weren't even a monopoly. There was *at least* a choice. Here's there's none.

Then I can see a /. article of the future complaining about the ICANNIFA is crippling the internet and that government should have control over it.

Re:Won't happen. (1)

PinkyDead (862370) | more than 6 years ago | (#22169364)

ICANN is considered a strategic U.S. asset.
And that's where the problem lies.

The strategic value of ICANN is right up there with the strategic value of a melting snowflake. If ever the US tried to leverage this value it would instantly disappear.

However, as long as there is a perceived strategic value, we shall all dance this merry dance.

The solution is to deal with the perception not the reality.

I don't see this happening... (1)

AndGodSed (968378) | more than 6 years ago | (#22165950)

I will be surprised if this happens. I cannot see the US Government relinquishing control of a potential tool against terrorism, in other words, a way to gather info of people.

Re:I don't see this happening... (1)

Jeff DeMaagd (2015) | more than 6 years ago | (#22166122)

Then that would be a whitewash of their true intents. If there's any info to be gathered by DNS lookups, then it's not that hard to manually distribute an IP address instead.

Re:I don't see this happening... (1)

Shakrai (717556) | more than 6 years ago | (#22166130)

in other words, a way to gather info of people.

Need some more tinfoil for that hat? Exactly what does ICANN do that would be useful in "gathering info" on people? Finding out which domains they own and which IP addressing space they have?

You might have had a better point if you had said 'AT&T is a way to gather info on people'. ICANN itself is kind of useless in this regard.

Re:I don't see this happening... (1)

AndGodSed (968378) | more than 6 years ago | (#22167268)

My tinfoil hat is fine thankyou very mu... heeeaaayyy waidaminute... how did you know?

You mean.. like the United Nations? (2, Insightful)

Peter Cooper (660482) | more than 6 years ago | (#22165964)

ICANN has put in a request to the US government, asking to be freed from ties to the United States.

Yeah, like that's going to happen. The United Nations is supposedly meant to be independent from the US, but in reality is just a puppet organization held up by the US. Even organizations that aren't based in the US are inevitably tied to the goings-ons of the US from economic, trade, or cultural points of view, such as, say, the Bank of England. Given the US owns the largest swathes of IP address space, I can't see any official or semi-official ties (whether legal or cultural) with the US being cut any time soon.

Re:You mean.. like the United Nations? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22166014)

America pwns.

Re:You mean.. like the United Nations? (1)

Orleron (835910) | more than 6 years ago | (#22166224)

Hey, don't forget the efficient workings of the UN either!! :P

That's all the Internet needs.... a myriad of other countries with far ranging economic and social outlooks squabbling over how to run the Internet, and actually having power to enact their agendas.

I hope that if ICANN separates, it at least has people with American ideals running it... rather than, say, Russian, Chinese, or Middle Eastern ideals.

Re:You mean.. like the United Nations? (2, Insightful)

Fifty Points (878668) | more than 6 years ago | (#22166302)

The UN isn't controlled by the US. If it was, the US would not so often ignore it and dismiss it as irrelevant. (See: Invasion and Occupation of Iraq)

Re:You mean.. like the United Nations? (2, Funny)

Chris Mattern (191822) | more than 6 years ago | (#22166304)

If the UN is supposed to be a US puppet organization, all I can say is the US should demand its money back.

Re:You mean.. like the United Nations? (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22167100)

the US should demand its money back.

Maybe they should do that if they were actually paying their bills in the first place. The USA owes well over a billion dollars to the UN.

Re:You mean.. like the United Nations? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22168136)

So, if the UN is NOT a US evil-puppet organization why is it letting the people from Gaza strip suffer on the same way the Jews suffered on the Warsaw ghetto?

Come on, wake up. The USA are the biggest losers of this century already, and are we on the rest of the world supposed to pay because of your stupidity and childish mentality?
You have to let your world power go, as the Brits did after the WWII. You are a destroyed nation, on all aspects: economic, political, cultural, military and ideological.

You don't have anymore the moral authority that used to give you enough power to oversee world institutions.

By the way, your US is the nation that OWES more money to UN... http://www.africa.upenn.edu/Urgent_Action/dc_7997.html [upenn.edu]

Re:You mean.. like the United Nations? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22169816)

The US is "assessed" to contribute 22% of the UN's budget. With all of our outstanding contribution to world security, it seems just to delay this "assessment". Who's paying us?

Re:You mean.. like the United Nations? (2, Insightful)

Shakrai (717556) | more than 6 years ago | (#22166358)

The United Nations is supposedly meant to be independent from the US

Blame this [wikipedia.org] guy. Little known fact: The original idea behind the UN did not grant veto power to the "big five". The Allies agreed to allow it in order to convince the Soviet Union to join.

but in reality is just a puppet organization held up by the US

Really? Is that why the General Assembly applauded Hugo Chavez after his little tirade? Is that why we can't even stop resolutions like Zionism == racism? Hell, native New Yorker complaint time: Is that why the bastards think they are above local laws that apply to every other American citizen?

Even organizations that aren't based in the US are inevitably tied to the goings-ons of the US from economic, trade, or cultural points of view, such as, say, the Bank of England

And it's our fault that our economy and culture are that successful? Would you have had the same complaints about Great Britain a few decades ago or is it only fashionable to whine about American dominance?

Nobody put a gun to the head of the teenagers of the World and made them listen to Britney Spears, wear blue jeans and drink Starbucks coffee. For whatever reason American culture seems to be popular in parts of the World. I fail to see why we should apologize for that.

Re:You mean.. like the United Nations? (4, Funny)

KutuluWare (791333) | more than 6 years ago | (#22166646)

Nobody put a gun to the head of the teenagers of the World and made them listen to Britney Spears, wear blue jeans and drink Starbucks coffee. For whatever reason American culture seems to be popular in parts of the World. I fail to see why we should apologize for that.


Well, if you won't, then please allow ME to personally apologize to the world for Britney Spears.

--K

Re:You mean.. like the United Nations? (1)

Shakrai (717556) | more than 6 years ago | (#22166978)

Hey, I'm not a fan of her music either, but for some strange reason that completely escapes me lots of people (not just Americans) listen to that crap. For better or worse she is an undeniable part of American culture. I can't help but recall how when Bill Clinton went to Vietnam to re-establish relations he saw Vietnamese teenagers listening to Britney Spears and wearing blue jeans. Ten years of bombing the crap out of them and they still embraced our culture. I don't understand it but it's hardly a unique story. For some strange reason American culture seems to have enormous appeal.

With regards to Britney Spears though, maybe this thought will make you feel better: It's not as though the United States has monopoly on shitty music [wikipedia.org] ;)

Re:You mean.. like the United Nations? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22167310)

"Bill Clinton went to Vietnam to re-establish relations"

He did not re-establish relations with those 12-year-old girls.

Re:You mean.. like the United Nations? (1)

Jesus_666 (702802) | more than 6 years ago | (#22166678)

Well, you should apologize for Britney Spears.

Re:You mean.. like the United Nations? (1)

Charcharodon (611187) | more than 6 years ago | (#22166370)

Soory but he who pays the piper calls the tunes.

Not that many in the US even like the UN. Most of us would be glad to wash our hands of it and use the extra tax money on something worth while like as hookers and blow, instead of pouring money into the pockets of leaches from every butt-crack country on the planet who in turn piss it all away on hookers and blow.

Re:You mean.. like the United Nations? (1)

Kastigador (792398) | more than 6 years ago | (#22166714)

Yeah, like that's going to happen. The United Nations is supposedly meant to be independent from the US, but in reality is just a puppet organization held up by the US.
The United States wields power and influence in the UN through sheer economic power. Without US support, the UN usually has no teeth. The same could apply to ICANN. Just look at the department currently in charge of overseeing ICANN. The US is clearly not the only country that has this kind of power though, so their total control of ICANN in its current incarnation is suspect. Given the diplomatic pressure of late, I don't believe the US has a choice in the matter. If the US wants their internet presence to remain dominant world wide, they have to cede control to an independent entity. Otherwise the US risks a zoned/segmented internet that could cripple world trade activity and hurt their ever cherished economic dominance. I think the Department of Commerce is quite capable of recognizing this. Even though the United Nations may be heavily dependent upon the US, the legitimacy of its policies/decisions still reflect other countries around the world and usually have a better reception. The same can be said about an independent ICANN, although it remains to be seen if having NO political oversight is really a good idea. Absent some sort of oversight, I could see corruption/bribery becoming a very prevolent problem.

Re:You mean.. like the United Nations? (1)

Jeff DeMaagd (2015) | more than 6 years ago | (#22169876)

I think this is different from diplomacy problems, or rather, ICANN is only a very tiny bit of the problem. If the US spins off ICANN to smooth over diplomatic issues, it would be just a covering of a pattern of recalcitrance on the part of US diplomacy. I think it would be an insult to the world's diplomatic community to even think that letting ICANN go is enough to make up for that.

ICANN is already an aloof organization, I don't see spinning it off to be independent is going to help.

Re:You mean.. like the United Nations? (1)

Jeff DeMaagd (2015) | more than 6 years ago | (#22167852)

If it's a US puppet, then why was the US reluctant to pay its dues?

Wrong question (1)

marcosdumay (620877) | more than 6 years ago | (#22170872)

If it wasn't a puppet, the US would pay its dues, fearing some sanction.

And it's time to CANN .mil and .gov (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22165988)

Unless the United States is trying to be the Ruler of the World it's time to move to .mil.us and .gov.us like everyone else.

Re:And it's time to CANN .mil and .gov (4, Funny)

Shakrai (717556) | more than 6 years ago | (#22166044)

Unless the United States is trying to be the Ruler of the World it's time to move to .mil.us and .gov.us like everyone else.

Yes, because in the grand scheme of things with everything that's going on in the World, ranging from the War in Iraq to the Genocide in Darfur, the fact that the United States has global TLDs not ending in .us is really a priority that the World community needs to address.

Re:And it's time to CANN .mil and .gov (0, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22166120)

And yet here you are, instead of doing something about those problems, wittering your simplistic insights at those of us who clicked on your post because it looked as though it might be funny. I'm glad that you think your need to share your idiocies is more important than Genocide (with a capital G because it's so important), etc. The rest of us have a sense of perspective.

Re:And it's time to CANN .mil and .gov (2, Insightful)

Shakrai (717556) | more than 6 years ago | (#22166196)

The rest of us have a sense of perspective

And your sense of perspective is leading you to whine about the fact that the United States has a few TLDs for itself? Who the hell cares? That's just a fluke of history. If the UK had gotten the internet going then maybe it would be navy.mil.us instead of navy.mil and royal-navy.mod instead of royal-navy.mod.uk.

You don't see too many Americans whining about the fact that UTC is based on Greenwich Mean Time. The nerve of those Brits to define the Prime Meridian as going through their country. We should change this ASAP.

Re:And it's time to CANN .mil and .gov (1)

db32 (862117) | more than 6 years ago | (#22167254)

Now, I think you are 100% correct. I think your responses are rather funny as well. However, as much as it pains me to say as an American, I suggest you go ask a statistically significant group of Americans what UTC and GMT actually are. You could even go further and ask them to point out Greenwich on a map. This may explain the lack of outrage more than an enhanced sense of perspective on how pointless it would be to complain about UTC/GMT.

Re:And it's time to CANN .mil and .gov (1)

Shakrai (717556) | more than 6 years ago | (#22167432)

This may explain the lack of outrage more than an enhanced sense of perspective on how pointless it would be to complain about UTC/GMT.

Eh, your probably right (about Americans not being able to find it on a map), but it's still a damn good analogy if I do say so myself.

The Brits got to define the prime meridian because they were the economic/naval power of the period. The United States got some American-only TLDs (.edu, .mil and .gov) because we got the internet going. I really don't see what the fuss is about, other then maybe it annoys a few people that they don't have to type '.us' on the end of these sites. Is it really something worth getting worked up for?

You've got it all wrong (2, Funny)

TimeTraveler1884 (832874) | more than 6 years ago | (#22167190)

...the fact that the United States has global TLDs not ending in .us is really a priority that the World community needs to address.
I think you are missing the GP's point. He's saying that because the United States has global TLDs not ending in .us, we have the war in Iraq and genocide in Darfur. Which makes sense if you don't think about it.

Re:And it's time to CANN .mil and .gov (1)

Fredtalk (1105765) | more than 6 years ago | (#22166780)

We created the internet, we can keep whatever TLD's we want.. Well, aslong as we control ICANN.

It's not going to (2, Insightful)

techpawn (969834) | more than 6 years ago | (#22165998)

But with China and Russia making their own ICANN of sorts it seems to make sense for ICANN to become a free and neutral international department. If it's going to be a WORLD WIDE WEB for much longer and not the US tubes, EURAsia tubes, Russia tubes, and China Tubes something has to give now.

ICANN becoming their own international organization with no country has to be one of those things.

Re:It's not going to (1)

Shakrai (717556) | more than 6 years ago | (#22166096)

f it's going to be a WORLD WIDE WEB for much longer and not the US tubes, EURAsia tubes, Russia tubes, and China Tubes something has to give now.

And what exactly is the problem with each country asserting control over the internet within it's own borders? That's how the POTS network works. ICANN's role in this scenario is limited to delegating IP addresses and the DNS root in order to avoid conflicts. But what actually happens to the network itself within national borders should be the call of the country involved. Ya know, sovereignty and all that.

ICANN becoming their own international organization with no country has to be one of those things.

And responsible to whom? Themselves? That's a great idea....

So who gets oversite? (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22166022)

While the U.S. Government has done a horrible job of keeping ICANNs policies fair to the average internet user, at least there was some level of oversite and someone who could take ICANN to task. If ICANN loses U.S. Government oversite who will take over? Who's to prevent them from adopting even worse policies that will screw us over even more and extort even more money out of "Joe the website owners" pockets?
The U.N? The U.N. is a joke that has proven itself to be just as corrupt as any government on the planet.

Dear USG (1)

DeeVeeAnt (1002953) | more than 6 years ago | (#22166072)

When in the Course of human events, it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another, and to assume among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature's God entitle them, a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation. ...

editors, please (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22166148)

ICANN Writes to US Government Requesting Independence

To what end? (3, Insightful)

Joseph Vigneau (514) | more than 6 years ago | (#22166160)

If ICANN succeeds and gains "independence" from the US Dept. of Commerce, what would change? Has the US government imposed any restrictions on the activities of ICANN while under its wings? Most of the issues dealt with by the government involving the Internet are independent of ICANN's charter. Net neutrality and "protecting the children"/censorship, two of the hot Internet issues in Congress, don't really have much to do with ICANN's workings. Indeed, each nation sets their own policies right now about how their populace uses the global Internet (see: Great Firewall of China).

The UN probably isn't the best shepherd for ICANN. The ISO seems to be a decent possibility.

Re:To what end? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22166294)

the .xxx domain springs to mind...

Re:To what end? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22169326)

Has the US government imposed any restrictions on the activities of ICANN while under its wings?
Not yet.

But with the way things are going in the US, it's only a matter of time.

I hope you're all happy (4, Funny)

PinkyDead (862370) | more than 6 years ago | (#22166250)

With all this time spent arguing about who should control the Internet and how everybody hates the US and how everybody loves the US and how the UN is corrupt and how the UN is not corrupt and how everyone except you is a communist and nobody's a communist and China is a big country and Europeans eat French food and Kim Jong Il wants to use the Internet to enslave all of mankind with sharks and laser beams; not once, not even one single time did anyone stop and ask ICANN what they wanted.

Shame on you all!

All your ICANN are belong to US (3, Funny)

imyy4u1 (1222436) | more than 6 years ago | (#22166278)

Haha, for once the saying actually applies...literally. All your ICANN are belong to US.

Independence ? (0, Redundant)

PolarBearFire (1176791) | more than 6 years ago | (#22166320)

Independence from the US? Ok, but who is going to be in charge of them? Are we going to trust that an independent corporation is going to be working towards the good of all instead of its own goals? How is it bad for an organization that oversees critical infrastructure be accountable by elected public officials?

Re:Independence ? (1)

VGPowerlord (621254) | more than 6 years ago | (#22168284)

I think they're going to change their slogan to "We do what must, because we can."

ICANN should be scrapped (1)

ThoreauHD (213527) | more than 6 years ago | (#22166384)

If ICANN wants to be free of regulation, they are fooling themselves. The UN is the touchstone of "unregulated" organizations, and look at how corrupt and pointless that turned out. China/Iran heading the human rights commission. WTF. ICANN will have a master. They just need plausible deniability as to who pulls the strings. The US can arrange that. Russia can arrange that. China can arrange that. And Koffi Annan and his 2 Billion Dollar confiscating son can arrange that. The ICANN is currently in the best position that they can be in, considering the alternatives.

What would be best is that a new organization is founded that ICANN hands the reigns to. This organization would have no direct ties to the USA or any country. But on the back end, it would be US controlled. The only way the US will let Vladimir Putin make a country disappear is by bombing them out of existence. They have to go through the US to get their domain deleted, which is damned inconvenient I know, but too bad.

The US is the check and balance to a world of complete fuckups. Europeans have their delusions of military adequacy, when Russia and China could wipe them out in a week. The 3rd world countries use machetes to elect a President. This is a world-wide infrastructure concern. Show me a group, state, country, or union that is more stable and fair than the USA, and I'd be interested in hearing it. Whichever one of you can defend the infrastructure of the internet against the likes of China/Russia, be my guest. But you're all piss and vinegar. And if China/Russia starting their own internet naming would happen even if they had control. So don't get your panties in a bunch. That was their thought from the beginning. ICANN is just to stupid to understand this. ICANN should be scrapped and remade without the obvious US control- but that is it.

If ICANN thinks this is going to happen ... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22166706)

...I want some of whatever they're smoking.

Maybe they can set up shop in (1)

Mesa MIke (1193721) | more than 6 years ago | (#22166916)

Sealand [wikipedia.org] .

MLK Jr. (1)

nickruiz (1185947) | more than 6 years ago | (#22167734)

Anyone find this ironic that ICANN has made this request around Martin Luther King Jr.'s holiday?

coup d'état (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22168078)

I think special forces are preparing a coup d'état in Marina Del Rey [wikipedia.org]

ICANN: Everybody has an agenda (1)

wilder_card (774631) | more than 6 years ago | (#22168616)

What, exactly, do the people who want an "independent" ICANN want that they don't have now? And are their stated reasons the real ones? If they get their way, does the DNS system become even more chaotic than it is now?

Bottom line is I don't trust any of these people to put the interests of the actual users of the Internet first. Of course, I don't really trust ICANN either. Maybe it's me...

Verisign (1)

fulldecent (598482) | more than 6 years ago | (#22168762)

Site finder 2?

oblig (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22169540)

i cann haz independance plz?
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