Internet Governance

Internet Governance / News Briefs

Official: Rod Beckstrom Announced as the ICANN President and CEO

During its board meeting today in Sydney, the Internet Corporation of Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) announced Rod Beckstrom, the former U.S. cybersecurity chief, as the new President and CEO. Beckstrom will be replacing Dr. Paul Twomey who had been serving this position since March 2003 and announced his resignation earlier this year. Dr Twomey has lately been reported as the primary candidate for heading Australian Government's proposed A$43 billion investment in a new National Broadband Network. more

US Senators Push Bill to Boost Internet, Communication Channels for Iranians

Voice of America reporting: "U.S. lawmakers say they plan legislation that would fund efforts to help Iranians receive and send information despite government restrictions. Independent Senator Joe Lieberman said Thursday that the bill intends to help the Iranian people stay 'one step ahead of the Iranian regime.'" Also a related report by AFP. more

Iran’s Internet Censorship Most Sophisticated in the World

Iran's political filtering during the recent 2009 presidential campaign and the role of the Internet in the post-election turmoil has brought a heightened level of attention to the country's Internet filtering system. According to a status report just updated by the OpenNet Initiative, the Internet censorship system in Iran has become one of the most comprehensive and sophisticated in the world. Iran and China are the only countries that aggressively filter the Internet using their own technology. Iran's aggressive filtering measures "have contributed to the implementation of a centralized filtering strategy and a reduced reliance on Western technologies," says OpenNet. more

ICANN Confirms Selection of Leading New CEO Candidate, Announcement Expected Next Week

Following rumors last week on the leading candidate for ICANN's new CEO position, an official announcement has been released by ICANN confirming that the board may indeed announce its selection during its meeting in Sydney next week. more

Rumor: Rod Beckstrom Next ICANN CEO

Sources indicate former director of the US Homeland Security Department's National Cybersecurity Center (NCSC), Rod Beckstrom, will be replacing the current ICANN CEO, Paul Twomey, who announced his resignation earlier this year. Milton Mueller in a blog post on the IGP website writes: "This is still unconfirmed by ICANN but comes from well-informed sources. We also hear that David Eisner, the CEO of the Corporation for National and Community Service under G.W. Bush and former VP at AOL, was also in the running." Beckstrom recently made headlines for his sudden resignation from his post at NCSC, criticizing the lack of funding from the NSA and its move to try to "rule over" the NCSC. more

Website Monitoring Practices Taking Advantage of Critical Loopholes in Privacy Protection

Researchers at the University of California, Berkeley's School of Information have released a report raising concern over website monitoring practices which appear to be taking advantage of critical loopholes in privacy protection. According to the study, most popular websites in the United States "all share data with their corporate affiliates and allow third parties to collect information directly by using tracking beacons known as 'Web bugs' -- despite the sites' claims that they don't share user data with third parties." more

Hearing Scheduled to Examine Future Relationship of US and ICANN

Rick Boucher, Chairman of the House Energy and Commerce Communications Subcommittee, will hold a hearing on June 4th to examine the future of U.S. government's relationship with ICANN. Tech Daily Dose of the National Journal reports: "Boucher has previously expressed interest in holding an ICANN hearing, particularly since a joint project agreement that has allowed Commerce Department oversight of ICANN is slated to sunset on Sept. 30 amid accountability and transparency concerns." more

FUD for Thought: ARIN Releases Comic Books

The American Registry for Internet Numbers (ARIN) has launched a comic book series to further help raise awareness for the adoption of IPv6 and other matters dealt by the organization. The comic books, called "Team ARIN", are fictionalized views of the organization, its processes, and the whole concept of Internet governance. "Though our heroes are fictional, the issues they face are very real," says ARIN. more

EU Calls For Full Privatization of ICANN, Commissioner Calls Sept 30 Moment of Truth

In a video posted on her website this morning, Viviane Reding, EU Commissioner for Information Society and Media, has called for greater transparency and accountability in Internet Governance. She outlines a new Internet Governance model which includes a fully private and accountable ICANN, accompanied by an independent judicial body, as well as a "G12 for Internet Governance" -- a multilateral forum for governments to discuss general internet governance policy and security issues... more

ICANN Should be Reformed Before “Privatization”, Says New Study

The Technology Policy Institute (TPI), an IT and communications policy think tank, has just released a paper proposing that "ICANN's governance structure should be dramatically reformed to make it more accountable before the current tie with the U.S. Department of Commerce is allowed to expire." The paper titled "ICANN At a Crossroads: a Proposal for Better Governance and Performance" is written by Thomas M. Lenard, President and Senior Fellow at TPI, along with Lawrence J. White, Professor of Economics at the NYU Stern School of Business. The 52-page study also asserts that ICANN must have a clear focus on encouraging competition with minimal role as a regulator with respect to the creation of new generic Top-Level Domains (gTLDs). more

ICM Registry Publicly Posts Filings for Independent Review Panel Against ICANN on .XXX Domain

ICM Registry (proponents of the .xxx initiative) and Stuart Lawley, Chairman and President of the organization, have filed a 522-page brief in the ongoing Independent Review Process that began last June. "In what may prove to be the biggest sleeper Internet governance issue of the year, ICM Registry has publicly posted its filings for the Independent Review Panel that will decide whether ICANN acted improperly in rejecting its application for a .xxx domain," writes Brenden Kuerbis in a post on the IGP blog.  more

Thailand’s Blacklist of Newly Banned Websites Leaked

Whistleblower website WikiLeaks has released the list of newly blacklisted websites by Thailand's Ministry of Information and Communication Technology (MICT). The list was leaked by advisory board member CJ Hinke, director of Freedom Against Censorship Thailand, according the WikiLeaks website. From WikiLeaks' announcement: "The 1,203 blocked websites are located in Australia, Brazil, Canada, Czech Republic, France, Germany, Hong Kong, Hungary, India, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Japan, Mexico, The Netherlands, New Zealand, Poland, Russia, South Korea, Spain, Sweden and Vietnam..." more

ICANN Terminates EstDomains, Seeks Bulk Transfer of Customers

In follow up to reports on ICANN's termination of notorious domain name registrar, EstDomains due to fraudulent activities, the Internet oversight agency is now preparing to transfer domain names of its customers to other registrars... However the question asked by experts is whether any other registrar would have an interest in inheriting EstDomains questionable domain names. more

ICANN Released Its Draft for New Top-Level Domains, 45 Day Comment Period Now Open

In follow up to its earlier announcement this year regarding the relaxation of rules for the introduction of new Top-Level Domains, the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) yesterday released a draft version of the Applicant Guidebook for those interested in applying for a new generic Top-Level Domain (gTLD). Although application comes with a hefty entry fee of close to $200,000, the development of new gTLD introductions will be of particular interest to trademark owners as well as any other company involved with domain names. Among various issues, the guidebook aims at addressing concerns such as who would qualify for '.apple' or '.amazon' gTLDs. more

U.S. Department of Commerce Seeking Public Comments for Deployment of DNSSEC

During a conference, "Internet of Things," in France, the U.S. Department of Commerce made the announcement that it will hold a public consultation on the different proposals to cryptographically sign the DNS root zone file, and determine who will hold the root zone trust anchor for global DNSSEC implementation, says Milton Mueller on the Internet Governance Forum blog. The blog, titled "Commerce Department asks the world to comment on its plans to retain control of the root," continues... more

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