Commerce Department and ICANN Sign Historic Accord on Internet Governance
September 30, 2009; 11:54 AM
Washington, D.C… September 30, 2009… ICANN and the U.S. Department of Commerce have signed an historic Affirmation agreement supporting the ICANN model of international multi-stakeholder and bottom-up governance of the global Internet addressing system.
“This new Affirmation marks an exciting new stage in ICANN’s development as a truly international entity and it confirms once and for all, that the ICANN model of public participation works, and works effectively,” said Rod Beckstrom, ICANN Chief Executive Officer. “One world, one Internet, everyone connected – this is our goal at ICANN. This agreement gives international stakeholders an even more powerful voice in our activities moving forward.”
More than a decade ago it was envisioned that the Internet’s addressing system would be coordinated by a private, multi-stakeholder, non-profit corporation, specifically ICANN. The rationale was that the Internet not be controlled by any single government, group of governments or special interest.
“A decade ago the US government was a catalyst for a global discussion on how to coordinate the vital resource that is the Internet’s unique identifiers,” said Peter Dengate Thrush, ICANN’s Chairman of the Board. “They understood that it needed to be coordinated not controlled. That vision has been affirmed in the model of private sector leadership that ICANN represents.”
Under the Affirmation agreement, the U.S. will remain committed to participation in ICANN’s Governmental Advisory Committee (GAC), which is one of the bodies that advises the corporation in its crucial mission of assuring that one human being can contact another anywhere on the planet.
The agreement also mandates that ICANN’s accountability to the Internet community must be reviewed at least every 3 years by a committee made up of representatives of the community, which will include the U.S. Assistant Secretary of Communications and Information of the Department of Commerce.
Global business and Internet leaders welcomed news of the Affirmation agreement.
To read additional reaction to the Affirmation Agreement go here: http://www.icann.org/en/announcements/announcement-30sep09-en.htm#reaction
To read the Joint Affirmation Agreement go here: http://www.icann.org/en/announcements/announcement-30sep09-en.htm#affirmation.
To see a videotaped interview with CEO Rod Beckstrom discussing the Affirmation Agreement go here: http://www.icann.org/en/announcements/announcement-30sep09-en.htm#video.
To reach another person on the Internet you have to type a domain name
or IP address into your computer. It has to be unique so computers know
where to find each other. ICANN coordinates these unique identifiers
across the world. Without that coordination we wouldn't have one global
Internet. ICANN was formed in 1998. It is a not-for-profit
public-benefit corporation with participants from all over the world
dedicated to keeping the Internet secure, stable and interoperable. It
promotes competition and develops policy on the Internet’s unique
identifiers. ICANN doesn’t control content on the Internet. It cannot
stop spam and it doesn’t deal with access to the Internet. But through
its coordination role of the Internet’s naming system, it does have an
important impact on the expansion and evolution of the Internet. For
more information please visit: www.icann.org.
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