[IRP] Fwd: [IP] USG rescinds 'leave internet alone' policy
Tue Mar 2 04:05:33 EET 2010
(With regard to article ' US government rescinds 'leave internet alone'
Lee also recently forwarded to the IGC list)
Max Senges wrote:
> Thanks Olivier
> Quite interesting. What do people think? That the US is pushing for
> more governance is not necessarily bad, no?
No, it wont be bad if the governance they were pushing for was democratic.
But note what the article says, in a typical US centric,
(all quotes below are from the mentioned article)
>Internationally, the Internet Governance Forum -- set up by under a
United Nations banner to deal with global >governance issues -- is due
to end its experimental run this year and become an acknowledged
institution. >However, there are signs that governments are increasingly
dominating the IGF, with civil society and the Internet >community
sidelined in the decision-making process.
That is funny. I never earlier have heard any allegations that govs
*are* dominating the IGF. So not only all non US govs are bad separately
and collectively - and thus no effort towards any governance models that
include all should be supported - but even IGF which is so open etc is
already bad because it is being imagined that it is already being
dominated by govs - which when not US gov (or maybe also EU), are of
And about US gov, the article is so soft, nay, rather positive.
>In this broader context, the US government's newly stated policy is
more in line with the traditional laissez-faire >internet approach.
Internet Policy 3.0 also offers a more global perspective than the
isolationist approach taken by> the previous Bush administration.
So, we, the rest of the world, are being exhorted to accept US's benign
suzerainty. What a model for our global societies to go forward. (And
we already have ICANN .) What is funny is, often all this is in fact is
done in the name of democracy, rights ands the such. (But of course the
same is the model that is offered in terms of private governance spaces
of digital mega-companies, which do offer us some MS models and some
rights here and there, within the structures and rules set and
controlled by them. Brave new models of democracy, one must say!)
And sure, most certainly, there are promises of benignity and
inclusivity (any social term can be abused) of the Suzerain.
>In explicitly stating that foreign governments will be a part of the
upcoming discussions, Strickling recognizes the >United States' unique
position as the country that ... ...
I often wonder, how easily are we willing to give our democratic rights
and credentials - in exchange of what!. Promises of some continued
availability and innovation of unheard technical marvels, the smallest
danger of any adversity regarding the resplendent technical march makes
us shiver and grovel to give up almost anything else.
So Max, when you ask
> Is there a way to promote human rights and related policy
> implementation principles as the basis for the governance efforts?
I would say, the basic human right that serves 'as the basis for the
governance efforts' is the right of democracy. Please do not try to
short cut it to get to some other bunch of rights, which in that case
looks a convenient co-option of a 'progressive discourse' by dominant
groups to further their interests. When we speak of rights as the basis
of governance, mention democracy first.
> "The future is here. It's just not widely distributed yet."
> ---William Gibson
> Max Senges
> www.maxsenges.com <http://www.maxsenges.com>
> Mobile: 01622122755
> On Mon, Mar 1, 2010 at 3:32 PM, Olivier MJ Crepin-Leblond <ocl at gih.com
> <mailto:ocl at gih.com>> wrote:
> you've asked for anything of interest to be forwarded to the IRP list.
> What I'm forwarding below has already been forwarded by someone
> else on the Governance list, but I thought that since this is a
> significant article, it was worthy of being sent out here as well.
> Having met Kieren many times when he was working at ICANN, I trust
> his judgement.
> Warm regards,
> Olivier MJ Cr?pin-Leblond, PhD
> -------- Message original --------
> Sujet: [IP] USG rescinds 'leave internet alone' policy
> Date : Sat, 27 Feb 2010 15:06:07 -0500
> De : Dave Farber <dave at farber.net> <mailto:dave at farber.net>
> R?pondre ? : dave at farber.net <mailto:dave at farber.net>
> Pour : ip <ip at v2.listbox.com> <mailto:ip at v2.listbox.com>
> Begin forwarded message:
>> *From:* Richard Forno <rforno at infowarrior.org
>> <mailto:rforno at infowarrior.org>>
>> *Date:* February 26, 2010 9:06:56 PM EST
>> *To:* Undisclosed-recipients: <>;
>> *Cc:* Dave Farber <dave at farber.net <mailto:dave at farber.net>>
>> *Subject:* *USG rescinds 'leave internet alone' policy*
>> Original URL:
>> US government rescinds 'leave internet alone' policy
>> By Kieren McCarthy
>> Posted in Networks, 27th February 2010 00:06 GMT
>> The US government's policy of leaving the Internet alone is over,
>> according to Obama's top official at the Department of Commerce.
>> Instead, an "Internet Policy 3.0" approach will see policy
>> discussions between government agencies, foreign governments, and
>> key Internet constituencies, according to Assistant Secretary
>> Larry Strickling, with those discussions covering issues such as
>> privacy, child protection, cybersecurity, copyright protection,
>> and Internet governance.
>> The outcomes of such discussions will be "flexible" but may
>> result in recommendations for legislation or regulation,
>> Strickling said in a speech at the Media Institute in Washington
>> this week.
>> The new approach
>> is a far cry from a US government that consciously decided not to
>> intrude into the internet's functioning and growth and in so
>> doing allowed an academic network to turn into a global
>> communications phenomenon.
>> Strickling referred to these roots arguing that it was "the right
>> policy for the United States in the early stages of the Internet,
>> and the right message to send to the rest of the world." But, he
>> continued, "that was then and this is now. As we at NTIA approach
>> a wide range of Internet policy issues, we take the view that we
>> are now in the third generation of Internet policy making."
>> Outlining three decades of internet evolution - from transition
>> to commercialization, from the garage to Main Street, and now,
>> starting in 2010, the "Policy 3.0" approach - Strickling argued
>> that with the internet is now a social network as well a business
>> network. "We must take rules more seriously."
>> He cited a number of examples where this new approach was needed:
>> end users worried about credit card transactions, content
>> providers who want to prevent their copyright, companies
>> concerned about hacking, network neutrality, and foreign
>> governments worried about Internet governance systems.
>> The decision to effectively end the policy that made the internet
>> what it is today is part of a wider global trend of governments
>> looking to impose rules on use of the network by its citizens.
>> In the UK, the Digital Economy Bill currently making its way
>> through Parliament has been the subject of significant
>> controversy for advocating strict rules on copyright infringement
>> and threatening to ban people from the internet if they are found
>> to do so. The bill includes a wide variety of other measures,
>> including giving regulator Ofcom a wider remit, forcing ISPs to
>> monitor their customers' behavior, and allowing the government to
>> take over the dot-uk registry.
>> In New Zealand, a similar measure to the UK's cut-off provision
>> has been proposed by revising the Copyright Act to allow a
>> tribunal to fine those found guilty of infringing copyright
>> online as well as suspend their Internet accounts for up to six
>> months. And in Italy this week, three Google executives were
>> sentenced to jail for allowing a video that was subsequently
>> pulled down to be posted onto its YouTube video site.
>> Internationally, the Internet Governance Forum -- set up by under
>> a United Nations banner to deal with global governance issues --
>> is due to end its experimental run this year and become an
>> acknowledged institution. However, there are signs that
>> governments are increasingly dominating the IGF, with civil
>> society and the Internet community sidelined in the
>> decision-making process.
>> In this broader context, the US government's newly stated policy
>> is more in line with the traditional laissez-faire internet
>> approach. Internet Policy 3.0 also offers a more global
>> perspective than the isolationist approach taken by the previous
>> Bush administration.
>> In explicitly stating that foreign governments will be a part of
>> the upcoming discussions, Strickling recognizes the United
>> States' unique position as the country that gives final approval
>> for changes made to the internet's "root zone." Currently the
>> global Internet is dependent on an address book whose contents
>> are changed through a contract that the US government has granted
>> to the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Number
>> (ICANN), based in Los Angeles.
>> ICANN recently adjusted its own agreement with the US government
>> to give it more autonomy and now reports to the global Internet
>> community through a series of reviews. Strickling sits on the
>> panel of one of those reviews.
>> Overall, this new approach could enable the US government to
>> regain the loss of some of its direct influence through
>> recommendations made in policy reports. But internet old hands
>> will still decry the loss of a policy that made the network what
>> it is today. ?
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