ICANN Governance Reforms Are Demanded

MARINA DEL REY, Calif. — Reforms are needed at ICANN, particularly when it comes for its board to adequately respond to Governmental Advisory Council advice, officials from the E.U. and U.S. say.

But E.U. Digital Agenda Commissioner Neelie Kroes and Larry Strickling, assistant secretary of the U.S. Department of Commerce, said that their governments will continue to support the ICANN system for assigning top-level domains.

In a joint statement Thursday, Kroes and Strickling both said that reforms are necessary to reinforce the transparency and accountability of ICANN's internal corporate governance, especially since the independent Internet czar is expected to approve a large number of other top-level domains at its next meeting in Singapore in June.

Adding urgency to calls for reform, a contract between ICANN and the U.S. government through the Internet Assigned Numbers Authority expires in September. 

Talk of reform at ICANN comes just two months after its board decided to give the green light to ICM Registry's .XXX sponsored top-level domain, which continues to be opposed by many in the online adult industry.