Re: [apnic-talk] AMM IG Discussion Comments

    • To: Skeeve Stevens <skeeve at eintellegonetworks dot com>
    • Subject: Re: [apnic-talk] AMM IG Discussion Comments
    • From: Naresh Ajwani <ajwaninaresh at gmail dot com>
    • Date: Sat, 15 Mar 2014 09:54:04 +0530
    • Cc: apnic-talk at apnic dot net
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      • Historic announcement:

        U.S. to relinquish remaining control over the Internet

        By Craig Timberg,  Published: MARCH 14, 5:19 PM

        U.S. officials announced plans Friday to relinquish federal government control over the administration of the Internet, a move that pleased international critics but alarmed some business leaders and others who rely on the smooth functioning of the Web.Pressure to let go of the final vestiges of U.S. authority over the system of Web addresses and domain names that organize the Internet has been building for more than a decade and was supercharged by the backlash last year to revelations about National Security Agency surveillance.The change would end the long-running contract between the Commerce Department and the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN), a California-based nonprofit group. That contract is set to expire next year but could be extended if the transition plan is not complete.“We look forward to ICANN convening stakeholders across the global Internet community to craft an appropriate transition plan,” Lawrence E. Strickling, assistant secretary of commerce for communications and information, said in a statement.The announcement received a passionate response, with some groups quickly embracing the change and others blasting it.In a statement, Senate Commerce Committee Chairman John D. Rockefeller IV (D-W.Va.) called the move “consistent with other efforts the U.S. and our allies are making to promote a free and open Internet, and to preserve and advance the current multi-stakeholder model of global Internet governance.”But former House speaker Newt Gingrich (R-Ga.) tweeted: “What is the global internet community that Obama wants to turn the internet over to? This risks foreign dictatorships defining the internet.”The practical consequences of the decision were harder to immediately discern, especially with the details of the transition not yet clear. Politically, the move could alleviate rising global concerns that the United States essentially controls the Web and takes advantage of its oversight position to help spy on the rest of the world.U.S. officials set several conditions and an indeterminate timeline for the transition from federal government authority, saying a new oversight system must be developed and win the trust of crucial stakeholders around the world. An international meeting to discuss the future of Internet is scheduled to start on March 23 in Singapore.The move’s critics called the decision hasty and politically tinged, and voiced significant doubts about the fitness of ICANN to operate without U.S. oversight and beyond the bounds of U.S. law.“This is a purely political bone that the U.S. is throwing,” said Garth Bruen, a security fellow at the Digital Citizens Alliance, a Washington-based advocacy group that combats online crime. “ICANN has made a lot of mistakes, and ICANN has not really been a good steward.”Business groups and some others have long complained that ICANN’s decision-making was dominated by the interests of the industry that sells domain names and whose fees provide the vast majority of ICANN’s revenue. The U.S. government contract was a modest check against such abuses, critics said.“It’s inconceivable that ICANN can be accountable to the whole world. That’s the equivalent of being accountable to no one,” said Steve DelBianco, executive director of NetChoice, a trade group representing major Internet commerce businesses.U.S. officials said their decision had nothing to do with the NSA spying revelations and the worldwide controversy they sparked, saying there had been plans since ICANN’s creation in 1998 to eventually migrate it to international control.“The timing is now right to start this transition both because ICANN as an organization has matured, and international support continues to grow for the multistakeholder model of Internet governance,” Strickling said in a statement.Although ICANN is based in Southern California, governments worldwide have a say in the group’s decisions through an oversight body. ICANN in 2009 made an “Affirmation of Commitments” to the Commerce Department that covers several key issues.Fadi Chehade, president of ICANN, disputed many of the complaints about the transition plan and promised an open, inclusive process to find a new international oversight structure for the group.“Nothing will be done in any way to jeopardize the security and stability of the Internet,” he said.The United States has long maintained authority over elements of the Internet, which grew from a Defense Department program that started in the 1960s. The relationship between the United States and ICANN has drawn wider international criticism in recent years, in part because big American companies such as Google, Facebook and Microsoft play such a central role in the Internet’s worldwide functioning. The NSA revelations exacerbated those concerns.“This is a step in the right direction to resolve important international disputes about how the Internet is governed,” said Gene Kimmelman, president of Public Knowledge, a group that promotes open access to the Internet.Verizon, one of the world’s biggest Internet providers, issued a statement saying, “A successful transition in the stewardship of these important functions to the global multi-stakeholder community would be a timely and positive step in the evolution of Internet governance.”ICANN’s most important function is to oversee the assigning of Internet domains — such as dot-com, dot-edu and dot-gov — and ensure that the various companies and universities involved in directing digital traffic do so safely.Concern about ICANN’s stewardship has spiked in recent years amid a massive and controversial expansion that is adding hundreds of new domains, such as dot-book, dot-gay and dot-sucks, to the Internet’s infrastructure. More than 1,000 new domains are slated to be made available, pumping far more fee revenue into ICANN.Major corporations have complained, however, that con artists already swarm the Internet with phony Web sites designed to look like the authentic offerings of respected brands.“To set ICANN so-called free is a very major step that should done with careful oversight,” said Dan Jaffe, executive vice president of the Association of National Advertisers. “We would be very concerned about that step.”Follow The Post’s new tech blog, The Switch, where technology and policy connect.

        Regards & best wishes

        Naresh Ajwani

        On 15 Mar 2014 07:44, "Skeeve Stevens" <skeeve at eintellegonetworks dot com> wrote:

        I know I am a little late to the party on this, and I wasn't present at the meeting.  But I have reviewed the video and I am extremely surprised by what I have heard.

        Firstly, I have absolutely no doubt that the APNIC management and EC have the absolute interests of the region, and by assoiation, the global community at heart.

        Internet Governance is a critical issue which if not handled correctly and sensitively, could have a catastrophic effect on the Internet as we know it.  There are many parties who have different goals and agendas which go against the grain of the philosophy on which the Internet itself was founded.

        For Masato Yamanishi and Andy Linton to suggest that APNIC bow out of involvement in the process of being involved in, influencing and steering the global community on Internet Governance is completely ludicrous.

        While I will concede that APNIC is a registry whose job is to manage resources, the experience in managing those resources, especially at this time of critical shortage of some of those resources - as well as being the biggest region on the globe - gives it absolute credibility to take part in this debate.

        For Andy Linton to suggest that the APNIC Management and EC "not actually consulted with who this really matters to" is absolutely crap and inflammatory.  These AMM's, the Surveys and the numerous other avenues for people to provide their opinions and feelings about particular topics are well knows - but minimally used.  Just as Andy Linton and Masato are free to get up at the AMM and speak about how they feel, so is anyone else. There is little or no barrier to being able to be a part of this debate.  The size of your membership is not relevant in any debate and the biggest members and the smallest are equal.

        This was typified by the response to James question to the room in which no-one responded.  The comment that 'we need to give people time to think about it before springing it on them' is exactly the point that backed up James's suggestion of including questions in the AMM and being willing to work with those concerned about how those questions should be asked.

        James's suggestion for including the issue in the Members Surveys was the best approach to get the feeling of the whole membership.  Masato then complained about how long that takes... I agree... but there is no other choice in trying to gather the opinion of the membership.

        Masato pointed out something I had mentioned a number of times in that '80% of people aren't even hearing this discussion', and he is right... because they just don't care, or aren't interested in being involved.  Getting membership involvement is a very hard thing to do.  The number of people who are particularly passionate about the IG subject is very small.  His point about people responding to IG questions in the survey being minimal, I fully agree with....

        But... that people don't want to get involved, or have an opinion, doesn't matter.  There are people who DO care enough to be involved in the EC, Management, BoF's, AMM's, etc... who ARE taking an active role in what they determine to be of the greatest impact to the community as a whole - and they go forward and represent that.

        I was most offended by Andy Linton's comments which said:

        "I think there is a huge arrogance that we take the votes or opinions of 4000 members of APNIC and say that this gives this organisation a mandate to speak on behalf of the people of the Asia Pacific region which is more than half the words population and say 'we are the ones who know how to do everything governance related'"

        I'm not offended by the actual statement itself, but in combination with Masato's comment it is hypocritical to say that the opinions of 4000 members should not be good enough for a mandate of APNICs role in the region, but that the opinions of 2-3 vocal people at the AMM should be what directs APNIC policy and that we shouldn't wait around for the results of a members survey (or whatever form).

        Because, to be blunt... I don't care what it is that the vocal extreme minority (a couple of people) have to say about anything if it is not backed up by the will of the membership body.... no matter how valid or reasonable that position is.  It is called a democracy.

        In the absence of a VERY clear membership position on a topic, the EC are who set the focus for APNIC and what it is involved in.

        Andy and Masato - if YOU think that the EC are not doing a good enough job, then YOU run for EC... but I didn't see your names on the election ballot.

        You guys are absolutely free to have your say, and continue to do so as noisy as you like... I fully believe in the statement of 'I might not like what you say, but I will fight for your right to say it'.

        BUT if your positions are not backed up by significant community (not just noisy) support, then accept that the EC will do what they think is best... Let them do their jobs... and if you don't think they are doing that to the best interests of the community, then run for EC and see if the community supports you in this endeavour. 

        On the topic of resources... people know that in the past I have asked hard questions about the costs of travel of APNIC staff and how many need to be in business class - something that was addressed and also rationalised.  But we can always do more rationalisation of costs... but cost savings should never more important than the future of the way the Internet works.

        That said... accountability and understanding of the costs involved are absolutely important, and the requests for reporting, simplification of buzzwords, are mandatory for the community to have the information they need to know that the EC/Management is doing the right thing.

        My final statement regarding APNICs involvement in Internet Governance is that it is absolutely critical for the future integrity and stability of the Internet.  I would like to know the resources being expended, and as long as people are being conservative with the costs involved, I am happy with the level of involvement, and if appropriate, an increased involvement.  Paul and the EC has my full appreciation for his passion and dedication for IG and the long term viability of APNIC.


        Skeeve Stevens - eintellego Networks Pty Ltd
        The Experts Who The Experts Call
        Juniper - Cisco - Cloud - Consulting - IPv4 Brokering

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