U.S. Seeks Comments on Fate of ICANN

Steve Javors
WASHINGTON — Seeking input on the way the Internet is managed, the National Telecommunications and Information Administration, an arm of the U.S. Department of Commerce, has opened up a message board to the general public.

The open comment period runs through July 7, so those who wish to express their views must do so quickly. This is the first time the public has been asked to contribute in the debate for future governance of the Internet.

Those who want to comment can email the government directly at DNSTransition@ntia.doc.gov or post comments on ICANN’s site.

The NTIA will hold a public meeting on July 26, during which many of the public comments will be discussed, to decide the future operation of ICANN, the Internet’s current overseer. ICANN operates under a memorandum of understanding with the Commerce Department, which expires on Sept. 30.

The issue of institutional control over the Internet has recently gained traction over the U.S. government’s involvement, which seeks to act as the overall authority. There is a large groundswell of support that aims to have the U.S. reconsider its dominant role and let other countries have a hand in how the Internet is managed.