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Obama may give control of the internet to the UN. And for What?

Someone needs to manage the Internet, and come September 30, no one is quite sure who will be. Sounds bizarre –  an entity worth millions?

Once upon a time, a guy called Jon Postel managed the Net (all the domain names) but he died in 1998 and that job went to ICANN (the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers). Since 1998, that’s been a part of the US Dept of Commerce. They get to decide who gets to use all the dot-somethings (eg, .com, .au, .cpa). ICANN can award them to groups or run an auction and pocket that cash.  It is a monopoly, and there are conflicts there. The contract with the Dept of Commerce expires on Sept 30. In a normal world you’d expect the superpower-in-charge to roll that one over unless there was a big payoff for letting it go, or a foreign army on the beaches.

If the US government isn’t in control of ICANN, it can’t run as a separate monopoly thanks to US antitrust laws. So immediately ICANN is set “free” it will need to find a government to adopt it, so it has exemption from anti-trust laws (and more to the point, so it is accountable to something). But when it comes to government, there are a lot of bad choices.  The obvious choice is you-know-what, the global bureaucracy that isn’t elected, and never gets held to account. Come October 1 this year (a mere three weeks away) the UN may get control over… the internet. Scary? I think so.

An Internet Giveaway to the U.N.

The only thing worse than a monopoly overseen by the U.S. government is a monopoly overseen by no one—or by a Web-censoring U.N. Congress still has time to extend its ban on the Obama administration giving up protection of the internet. Icann has given it every reason to do so.

The Wall Street Journal reported that apparently the Obama administration has no plan for what happens to ICANN on October 1. That seems hard to believe…

Without the U.S. contract, Icann would seek to be overseen by another governmental group so as to keep its antitrust exemption. Authoritarian regimes have already proposed Icann become part of the U.N. to make it easier for them to censor the internet globally. So much for the Obama pledge that the U.S. would never be replaced by a “government-led or an inter-governmental organization solution.”

Rick Manning, president of Americans for Limited Government, called it “simply stunning” that the “politically blinded Obama administration missed the obvious point that Icann loses its antitrust shield should the government relinquish control.”

The other side of the debate is also at The Wall St Journal: Who will oversee the Internet. Gautham Nagesh argues that it’s no big deal, the UN won’t get control, and we should relax and be calm. But I didn’t find this soothing:

Mr. Larry Strickling [head of Commerce Dept] said he’s confident that a solution can be reached; the implication is that the U.S. is not going to back out unless it’s sure another government-led organization isn’t going to take its place.

So three weeks to go, and we’ll be protected by Larry’s sense of “sure-ness”?

And if it’s not the UN, it will still be “like” the UN — global, unaccountable and prone to corruption. Think IOC. Think FIFA.

The U.N. could filter and vet,
Those who challenge their views on the Net,
As with text-books, revised,
For the youth, sanitized,
To remove any skeptical threat.

    — Ruairi

But Why?

The part of the equation that doesn’t make sense to me is why the US would give this up. What’s the US getting in return? This below, is the best answer I could find. If this is it, we’re in deep trouble:

So why is this happening? Couldn’t they just leave things the way they were? The main goal is to reassure other countries that the U.S. isn’t secretly controlling the structure of the Internet. To the extent American businesses have been damaged by the Edward Snowden disclosures, especially those offering cloud and other online services, this is a move aimed at repairing the relationship between the U.S. and other countries on Internet issues.

Make no mistake, this is a concession by the U.S. While the Commerce Department rarely intervened publicly in ICANN’s affairs, the implicit threat of its ability to do so will be gone. That could have an unforeseen impact in the future, particularly if cyberweapons continue to play a larger role in military and counter-intelligence activities.

Apparently the US is making this big concession to earn symbolic brownie points in the reassurance and relationships stakes. It sounds a lot like paying billions to try to change the weather. Symbolic.

For those opposing the overreach of Big Government, our best asset is free speech — The Internet. As long as we have the Net, we can fight back.

Senator Ted Cruz “slams Obama” and set up a page: Don’t let Obama Give Away The Internet.

The US Congress may still be able to stop this:

“Today our country faces a threat to the internet as we know it. In 22 short days, if Congress fails to act, the Obama administration intends to give away the internet to an international body akin to the United Nations,” Cruz said in a speech on the Senate floor Thursday.

Some quotes:

“Proponents of the Internet give away tout a new “multi-stakeholder” model and use soothing terms like “bottom-up” and “consensus” that suggest everyone will work together for the greater good. But what they haven’t demonstrated is how an ICANN independent of the United States and our Constitution will remain independent of the Chinese, Russians, North Koreans, Iranians and others around the globe who are unfriendly to democratic values and have used violence to silence their political opposition. As long as the Internet is accountable to the American public through its government and bound by the U.S. Constitution, the Internet will continue to be a modern miracle of freedom.  We need every Representative and Senator in Congress to stand up for the American public and for free speech and guaranty that the Internet does not slowly become just one more technology controlled by despots.”- George Landrith, President, Frontiers of Freedom

“In the wake of the announcement that ICANN’s multi-stakeholder architect Fade Chehade will be a senior advisor to the Chinese government which seeks to dismantle the ICANN governance system, it would be dangerous and foolhardy to proceed with the Internet transition until the full impact of Chehade’s changing sides has been taken into account.”- Rick Manning, President, Americans for Limited Government

“The abdication of U.S. oversight of the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) would have serious consequences for our national security interests and Constitutional freedoms.   Such a move would diminish the role of the U.S. government in guaranteeing Internet freedom by 1) giving foreign governments, including hostile and authoritarian regimes, a greater say in Internet core operating functions, thereby increasing the risk that the Internet could be used as an instrument of warfare; and 2) further empowering foreign governments and non-governmental stakeholders, who are neither obligated to protect the First Amendment nor necessarily inclined to do so, to make decisions regarding Internet freedom that run counter to free speech.  It is grossly irresponsible for any president to jeopardize core American interests this way, particularly in the absence of explicit congressional authorization, which the Protecting Internet Freedom Act requires.” – Center for Security Policy

h/t Roy

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Obama may give control of the internet to the UN. And for What?, 9.3 out of 10 based on 50 ratings

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72 comments to Obama may give control of the internet to the UN. And for What?

  • #
    Reed Coray

    From the outset of his Presidency, Obama via his many apologies for and “put downs” of the US has shown his disdain and contempt for the US. Thus, it’s not surprising that he wants to give away the internet. There may be many reasons for his giving away the internet, but one is paramount: He perceives the internet as a threat to socialism and the one-world government he so fervently desires. Just one more example solidifying his hold on the legacy of Worst-President-Ever.

    431

    • #
      Ursus Augustus

      From the day he accepted the Nobel “Peace” Prize this narcissistic feel gooder has given the world little more than “Peace in Our Time” announcements and the consequences. Obama has actually ‘pissed on our time’ such us his sense of self importance.

      The best measure of what a goddamned disaster Obama has been is the rise of Trump and his ilk and his last resort opponent Hilary Clinton. The next best measure is the rise of Chinese thuggery, IS, Putin, Erdogan and even Duterte such is the contempt many countries and peoples have for Obama’s snivelling, posturing feel gooderism. He has discredited the legacy of the enlightenment and western democracy accumulated over centuries by presenting it as limp wristed, cowardly and dilettantish. He could have been firm and decisive in Libya, in Syria when Assad first ‘crossed that line’ and used chemical weapons against his own civilians. IS flourished in the vacuum of his ‘moral superiority’.

      I find Trump a complete moron frankly but he may well win in November such is the sheer frustration and widespread outright anger at the trainwreck this snivelling narcissist has left us with.

      I think it was one of JFK’s team who opined that ‘if you have a policy you cannot implement then you are probably better off without a policy’. In Oz think Pink Batts, NBN, School Halls etc. This eco evangelist’s blow up sex doll of a president makes that all look like mere canapes compared to the main course disaster we are looking at down the track.

      142

    • #
      mike restin

      I wonder if it’s quid pro quo.
      Obama will soon NEED a job that continues to prove his importance…maybe one running the UN or running the internet for them?

      91

      • #
        Oliver K. Manuel

        Obama has obviously been an agent of the UN since taking office. I voted for Obama the first time, acknowledge that he and the UN have both done a lot of social good, but realize now the great expense in basic rights of individuals to establish (or destroy) governments that promote (or deny) rights of individuals to enjoy life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.

        41

    • #
      Reed Coray

      Based on the ratio of green thumbs …to… green thumbs plus red thumbs, 97.5% of scientists agree: Obama is the Worst-President-Ever.

      30

  • #
    ATheoK

    Here’s hoping that Congress will maintain control of the internet, by sticking an amendment into one of the essential funding bills that also must pass in the next few weeks.

    Unfortunately, our POTUS has consistently taken steps to weaken American capabilities and strengths.

    Just one example is the POTUS’s order to Federal agencies and military for them to spend significant time and funds chasing climate geese, (as in chasing wild geese).

    Instead of those Federal entities developing and pursuing national goals for which they were formed, those entities must perform a climate song and dance for the POTUS before they address international issues or emergencies.

    242

  • #
    tom0mason

    The UN to manage the Internet, that’s an outrage!

    What would stop the UN aligning Internet requirements to those of UN Agenda 21 2030Agenda?

    UN bureaucracy for the internet run with the regulatory overhead of any international agreement, and the efficiency of the UN Peace Keepers.

    221

  • #
    Peter Polson

    It seems to have been forgottent that a decade or more ago, the UN wanted a global tax on all internet activity. That would give it all the funds it needed to operate, free of the US funding restraints currently existing. THAT is what the Obama action is about.

    231

  • #
    dp

    Management of the Internet is a matter of faith in a manner similar to faith in the value of paper money. All that is required to take it back is to convince people to change a single text file on their servers to point to preferred root servers in the Domain Naming System. Who ever controls that file controls the Internet. It is management of that file that Obama is giving away. The Internet is a voluntary association of connected networks and we’re free to come and go as we wish. Around that association has grown the backbone upon which data travels and ownership of that is not at risk. If the new managers screw things up there will be a market driven move away from the old ‘net to Internet Ver. 2.0.

    121

    • #
      Rereke Whakaaro

      Internet V2.0 already exists. It is run informally by the Telco’s who own the physical infrastructure.

      92

    • #
      Manfred

      In response to the sinister reality of an unaccountable UN regulated ‘internet’ or an internet controlled by some branch of the UN’s eco-globalist and bizarrely designated ‘civil society‘, alternative independent net-works might well rapidly arise. No different to the rise of multiple independent news sources when faced with the current ‘official’ MSM. So, one then merely chooses which net-work one wishes to surf.

      Alt-net on alt-servers with their own alt-links? It’s a pivotal moment of transparency when they then move to control the inevitable response. I for one would prefer not to wait until then.

      71

      • #
        OriginalSteve

        Ah yes but the NBN in australia basically forces everyone to use it , certianly in regional areas ( and its rubbish , apparently ). AS i said to my brother in low, they record all your internet activity in OZ ( hence need for VPN ) and created the NBN primarily as forcing everyone down one pipe so its easy to monitor and choke off if people arent obedient serfs….

        61

    • #
      bobl

      Not true, you decide what nameserver you use, that nameserver can trace back to any other nameserver, this is decentralised. Where you go when you type in a name just depends on what IP address that nameserver gives you. What doesn’t work on the internet though is multiple nodes with the same IP address. IANA is really needed for 32 Bit IP addresses (IPV4) but frankly IPV6 could just be federated to automatically discover IP addresses potentially using MAC addresses plus device ID IPV6 has a huge 128Bit address space which could just be automatically allocated.

      51

      • #
        dp

        The DNS system is distributed but not decentralized. Every uncached DNS lookup begins with a query to one of the root servers which returns the address of the name servers that are the registered authority for resolving IP addresses and host names for the domain of interest.

        The addresses of the root servers are stored in a small text file that every domain name server resolver depends on to make that initial query and this. This file must be updated from time to time because it changes with time and there is only one authoritative provider for that file. The data base used by the root servers to resolve the initial lookup to an authority has only one authoritative provider.

        People who run name servers must register those name servers and there is only one authority where they can be registered (ignoring that there are multiple agents that act as facilitators). This registration process is what gives individual name servers a valid “Start of Authority” record in the domain name system. It is the SOA record that the root servers use to direct lookups to specific authoritative name servers.

        There is a second file that is used on clients such as Windows and Linux/Unix systems that tells the client name resolver which name servers it can use to make queries of the global DNS system. This file is locally managed but frequently defaults to name servers run by Microsoft, Apple, Google, and various other DNS providers. The end user is free to change this file to any name service that allows it. Same with time servers, and while off topic, this resolver file sends every query your system makes to somebody who may be very interested in exploiting those query patterns.

        Except for the resolver file the single authority for all this is ICAAN, and ICAAN is the authority because we who run name servers agree to use their root servers and by default the databases that those servers use for that initial query. We don’t have to do that – we can use any root servers we trust.

        31

  • #
    Dennis

    The Gillard Labor Government would have done the same thing if they had control, after all PM Gillard and Minister Senator Conroy did try to impose internet censorship.

    71

  • #
    tom0mason

    From wikipedia [DOC=Department of Commerce]–

    On March 10, 2016, ICANN and the DOC signed a historic, culminating agreement to finally remove ICANN and IANA from the control and oversight of the DOC.This agreement is scheduled to go for approval by the U.S. National Telecommunications and Information Administration in April, 2016. This approval must occur before ICANN’s current contract with the DOC expires in September, 2016.

    Why can ICANN not be transferred to United States Government Publishing Office(GPO) as an independent agency?
    The GPO is as much a government monopoly in publishing as ICANN is in issuing internet name registrations.
    This would fit with the GPO’s efforts to digitize and electronically distribute all government documentation. And it fits with spirit of what they wrote in their illustrated official history covering the agency’s 150 years of Keeping America Informed [issued March 2011].

    31

    • #
      Roy Hogue

      Tom,

      Let me ask a question, one that seems important to answer. Is there something broken about the way the Internet is administered?

      If your answer is no — and I think it should be — then don’t fix it. Renew the contract with Commerce and be done with it.

      If your answer is yes, then anything you propose will be swallowed whole by someone and you don’t know where you end up.

      To me it’s undeniable that the internet has been fairly administered for the benefit of the entire planet. Yes there are some problems, disagreements, even distrust by some nations, many of them potential enemies of America. But so what? That is the normal course of human affairs and it doesn’t justify fixing what isn’t broken.

      If you can make a good argument to me that we haven’t done the job well I’m listening. Remember the government publishing office has no power similar to the Cabinet level Department of Commerce and thus, no real leverage for keeping ICANN in line.

      101

      • #
        tom0mason

        Roy,
        I do not think that there is a problem with ICANN’s administration at the moment. And I don’t think it needs fixing.
        Unfortunately it looks like Dear Leader does see it as a problem.
        All I offer is a compromise option the Republicans might wish to think about if the Dear Leader insists on a worse action.

        Re: the oversight — that is why I said it could be an independent agency of GOP’s, and the control comes with the legal minutia of the contracted obligations. Though quite probably I am wrong in what can be done here as I’m no legal eagle.

        Otherwise I know ‘Don’t fix what ain’t broke.’ Hopefully Congress will shout that loudly at Dear Leader.

        71

        • #
          tom0mason

          Oops

          That GOP’s should be GPO’s…

          30

        • #
          Roy Hogue

          Dear leader doesn’t see it as a problem, he is the problem, willfully tearing down his country so it can’t oppress anyone anymore. The internet is just one more oppression because we invented it and now do what regulating it needs to keep it up and running for everyone’s benefit.

          Dinesh D’Souza exposed him on that point already a long time ago.

          By the way, I might have been opposed to letting the DARPA Net go public had I been in Congress way back then. Overall I’m glad it was put to general use but it’s also exposed our military to a terrible risk. And I’ve no doubt that stuff we don’t want anyone else to find out is now in the hands of enemies and potential enemies.

          21

  • #
    Robdel

    I am rather confused. I thought the whole idea of the internet was that it would be controlled by noone, that is apart from individual government censorship, such as limiting access to certain sites. Is there a change in the wind?

    61

    • #
      Roy Hogue

      The need for control is so that governments cannot limit access to certain sites. And frankly various governments do censor and prohibit access, notable among them, China, a country pretending to be free when it isn’t. North Korea would be another. But they have control over the infrastructure within their borders and not beyond. With some other organization doing the job ICANN now does, you could apply for a URL and an IP address and be flat out refused if you intended to do just what Jo does right now, work against the false climate change alarm.

      Worse than that, suppose Jo isn’t popular with whoever pulls the strings and they revoke her URL and IP address. No infrastructure needs to be modified. It’s just a change propagated through all the Domain Name Servers and Jo disappears from the Internet.

      And that’s why it’s important to keep that control in the hands of honest men. And the UN is not honest.

      151

    • #
      Yonniestone

      Like a true free market model?, it kind of already has been operating like that but obviously the basic legal aspects have to be established to create a value on the virtual commodities to make it worthwhile to operate.

      The other option (Jo’s thoughts) is to have an entity wealthy enough to keep control of operating with an alternative income stream (UN/EU taxes,treaties,charities etc) so they are free to enact any laws that control internet content that fits in with what politics/ideals they wish people to accept, think Orwell’s 1984 in it’s terrible truth.

      51

  • #
    Roy Hogue

    I’ve followed this from when I first heard about it. The opposition in Congress is heavy and I never thought Obama would have the nerve to go on ahead with it. I was wrong, he will not stick at any abomination he can carry out. And if this goes through, the world and its Internet will be the losers.

    61

  • #
    ROM

    As an Australian who has to look into our own murky political mirror before commenting on other nation’s politics, I had better not go into what I personally think of Obama and his presidency as I might insult our American friends here.

    He is a Chicago Democrat and anybody knowing anything about the history of the Chicago Democrats particularly during the infamous Mayor Daly’s regime would know that abject corruption lies at the heart of and is a long standing inherent characteristic of that particular Democratic Party political grouping.

    Summed up best perhaps on another blog where I suggested that Obama was the worst President since Warren Harding, who didn’t want the Presidency in any case, to which an American commenter replied, “Harding wasn’t that bad !”

    And the American’s elected Obama TWICE ???
    ————-
    Re the Internet and the World Wide Web [ WWW ]

    First our species didn’t invent but tamed Fire possibly close to a million and a half years ago by Homo erectus.

    The Taming of and Deliberate use and Control of Fire and therefore of Energy by any species ever is the singular and major hallmark of our species and a hall mark that has enabled our species to achieve an extraordinary adaptability to nearly every conceivable climatic environment unmatched by any other advanced and intelligence equipped species.
    .
    Control of fire and therefore control of immense amounts of energy has allowed us to achieve a planetary domination never matched before in the 870 million years of multi celled life forms.
    .
    With Fire came the smelting of metals and all the advantages that provided over the use of short lifed, natural , biologically based products as tools and weapons.
    .
    Then came the wheel and probably rafts or proto boats , the taming of animals to give the mobility to move long distances and to provide meat and milk and power and companionship.
    .
    The first small settlements and villages and towns and cities [ Çatalhöyük ] came into being with the rise of Agriculture which began alongside of the semi nomadic hunter gather life , a period which may have lasted some thousands of years before Agriculture alone became the basis of the first Empires in the Fertile Crescent in Mesopotamia and perhaps in the Yangtze River basin in China
    .
    Then came writing in Sumer in Mesopotamia in around 3200 BC, over 5000 years ago.
    And for the first time mankind could pass on knowledge and skills and information to future generations still far into the future or to others who he might never ever see face to face ever during their own lifetimes.
    .
    Ocean capable boats and canoes and even sophisticate rafts in the hands of the early peoples allowed mankind to spread right across the planet from his original home on the African continent.
    .
    The mobility and skills mankind had developed down through the ages possibly were those that allowed our species to survive through the human bottleneck of some eighty thousand years ago when from genetic analysis, it seems our species were very close to extinction with possibly less or considerably less than 20 thousand breeding couples were all that were left of our human race.
    Perhaps co-incidently that period also co-incides with the Toba super volcanic eruption , the largest known super volcanic eruption event known.
    .
    Something new began in the way mankind structured and governed his society and peoples when Athenian democracy developed around the fifth century B.C. in the Greek city-state (known as a polis) of Athens, comprising the city of Athens and the surrounding territory of Attica and is the first known democracy in the world.
    .
    Then the real revolution that was to change the way mankind has thought lived and existed occurred in 1493 when Johannes Gutenberg combined a whole group of individual and known technologies to invent the first moveable type and press allowing the mass production of books and pamphlets and the spreading of knowledge and ideas and political concepts, all of which were to change the world of mankind forever in ways that nobody had ever dreamed of.
    .
    And the printing press reigned supreme for all of those 500 years past, spreading knowledge around the world but only to those who could afford and were close to the books and papers and information that was in that printed word.

    Then came electronics and the valve radios that allowed the collecting and spreading of news and information almost instantaneously from a centralised and controlled source.
    The invention of the transistor in 1947, of which I can just remember the publicity, leading to the possibility of practical and personalised communication devices being developed.
    .
    Then came the Internet , developed from the original US Dept of Defense’s APRANET in the 1950′s and the development of the communication protocols and technology over the next 30 years that finally evolved into the Internet as we know it hence the USA’s control of the Internet

    It was only in mid 1978, less than 40 years ago and still a couple of decades before the Internet became an almost informally established universally used world wide communications system that what we know as the Internet finally reached a form similar to what we are dealing with the Internet of today.

    ————

    I sometimes think of my very gentle Grandmother who born in Doncaster , to the east of the Melbourne city in Sept 1884 and died in November of 1978.

    She was born into an era where the steam trains and the new railways were the very height of technology , the first train in Australia running from Flinders Street to Sandridge, now Port Melbourne in12th Sept 1854 .
    She used to sometimes walk the 14 miles into the City to the markets and shops with her sisters.

    She was there when the first automobiles were introduced into Australia.
    She was there when the Wrights flew the first powered aircraft.
    She was there when the first nation wide telephone system in the world was built here in Australia.
    She saw two deadly world wide wars and lost very close relatives in the first, the first passenger airliners, the first rockets , the first atomic weapons, the first nuclear power plants, the first electricity systems, the first electric lighting and power, the first refrigeration systems, a huge advance allowing food to be kept and transported long distance and for long periods, something that today’s cities could not exist if refrigeration of food did not exist.
    She saw the first jet aircraft and jet airliners, the first radios, the first TV systems, the first of the internet, the disappearance of the horse for power and the first of many others now taken for granted without thought by the billions alive today.

    And from those technological marvels of the Industrial revolution, the steam engines and steam trains of her baby days that did so much to open the eyes of mankind to other ways and other futures, 84 years later She was to see Mankind land on the Moon, the First, the only “First ever” never to be repeated event, the “First” , Mankind’s leaving of his home planet and setting foot on another world that was not his own.

    121

    • #
      Rereke Whakaaro

      Nicely put ROM. One small comment though: It is ARPANET, not APRANET. But it won’t matter to most folks, as long as its decendents keep on working.

      51

      • #
        Roy Hogue

        Actually originally DARPA Net. Whether one word or two I don’t know but that’s the way I first heard of it.

        I remember wondering if this great network would ever find widespread use, especially with the public in general and of course the military, which I would now bet regrets ever having let the thing go public.

        So much for foresight, Roy, .COM did win out! You could have been rich!

        21

    • #
      Roy Hogue

      As an Australian who has to look into our own murky political mirror before commenting on other nation’s politics, I had better not go into what I personally think of Obama and his presidency as I might insult our American friends here.

      My dear friend,

      Do not worry about insulting anyone here with your opinion of Obama. Believe me, the only people who might be insulted would be those you would never worry about re what they think of you since they already think badly of you anyway.

      41

      • #
        Roy Hogue

        And a short sidebar about wanting or not wanting the presidency: I would rather have a president who didn’t want the job than one who wants it too much. My reason is simple, the former will not be likely to do nearly as much harm as the latter.

        21

    • #
      OriginalSteve

      The word “elect” implies a sound electoral process and integrity in the voting mechanism.

      Goven the voting machines in the USA were demonstrated to be easily hackable, a comment I saw mentioned the 2000 presidential election was probably the last truly free vote, since then however….which could explain why people *counh* “elected” a Marxist twice….

      A timely quote from Josef Stalin ( paraphrasing ) :

      “He who votes counts for nothing, he who counts the votes is what matters”

      Nuff said….

      31

  • #
    Oliver K. Manuel

    Centralized control over humanity isolated us from reality. We are now in a race to rediscover reality. My former student, Golden HWAUNG, and I were recently writing a paper on solar cosmic rays when we learned The Millennium Group had already reported that discovery on 4 July 1998:

    http://www.tmgnow.com/repository/solar/cosmicrays.html

    So today I sent TMG a note telling them their 1998 report was correct.

    71

    • #
      Gee Aye

      Yeah. You tell them buster. Can’t wait for the next instalment.

      21

    • #
      Oliver K. Manuel

      The pulsar core of the Sun was, and probably still is, the source of most cosmic rays in the solar system. That is why cosmic-ray exposure of meteorites in the early solar system was:

      1. Highest for the iron meteorites that formed closest to the pulsar
      2. Lower for the stone (silicate) meteorites that formed further away
      3. Lowest for the carbonaceous meteorites that formed yet further

      21

  • #
    Ruairi

    The U.N. could filter and vet,
    Those who challenge their views on the Net,
    As with text-books, revised,
    For the youth, sanitized,
    To remove any skeptical threat.

    191

  • #
    bobl

    The name system isn’t the big issue, anyone can run a nameserver. The big issue is how numbers are allocated. Frankly this could be and frankly should be fully automated especially for IPV6 taking the authority away from ICANN and instilling it into a daemon – a federated peer-peer system hosted by ALL ISPs. Elliminate ICANN/IANA over IPV6 and then the public can just migrate to IPV6.

    You could also use a different protocol and for example use MAC addresses to run an alternate name resolution service – this after all was what MAC addresses were for. You can even run a network within a network (Like TOR), so I see multiple ways out. Most stacks can still use source routing so it’s even possible to set up your own private pool for all the sites you want to go to.

    41

    • #
      Rereke Whakaaro

      We use TOR. Sometimes invisibility is good. Other times, it is a pain in the browser.

      51

    • #
      Roy Hogue

      Bob,

      From where I sit getting everyone to IPV6 looks a long way off. Millions of computers know nothing about it. And at a bare minimum they all would need NIC drivers that speak IPV6 installed. That’s not going to happen overnight anymore than PCs in the home happened overnight.

      And there’s the trouble with making any big change form something so well established and on which we depend so much as we do on the Internet. It takes time.

      The net we depend on today didn’t happen overnight. It took years of work.

      21

  • #
    pat

    multiple links:

    8 Sept: UK Register: Kieren McCarthy: Fight over internet handover to ICANN goes right down to the wire
    Congressmen threatening to derail IANA transition
    In reality, the US government has to decide by September 15 whether it is going to extend the IANA contract by a year. Under the terms of the contract, it is obliged to give ICANN 15 days’ notice of an extension. That means Congress has one week to block the move.
    Of course, it could get more complicated than that: Congress could vote to block the transition after that September 15 cut-off. It’s not clear what would happen at that point, although in all likelihood, the US government would simply extend the contract as ICANN would have a very hard time arguing greater authority than Congress.
    Likewise, the DoC could find some legal wiggle room in whatever Congress passes and effectively ignore it…READ ON
    http://www.theregister.co.uk/2016/09/08/fight_over_internet_handover_down_to_wire/

    Tim Berners-Lee & others:

    13 Jun: IEEE Spectrum: Tekla S. Perry: The Fathers of the Internet Revolution Urge Today’s Software Engineers to Reinvent the Web
    http://spectrum.ieee.org/view-from-the-valley/telecom/internet/the-fathers-of-the-internet-revolution-urge-todays-pioneers-to-reinvent-the-web

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      Roy Hogue

      From the September 8 Register article quoting Ted Cruz:

      “In twenty-two short days, if Congress fails to act, the Obama administration intends to give away the internet to an international body akin to the United Nations.”

      And then the author says:

      It’s a claim that is objectively untrue but which has played well with other Republicans.

      Indeed! What real evidence is given that Cruz’s complaint is objectively untrue? Many complaints about what Obama might do were dismissed in the same cavalier way. And yet here we are with a president who has been an unmitigated disaster from the hour he took office until now. I may not be the brightest ray of sunshine hitting this planet but I’ve been around a long time and seen too much of what was said to be never possible, never going to happen, never needing to worry about it, suddenly come true, to not fear trouble if just any old organization takes control of IANA/ICANN. And there is no plan for the future once the DoC drops the reins.

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      Roy Hogue

      And now let’s consider the other article Pat provided as food for thought.

      The Fathers of the Internet Revolution Urge Today’s Software Engineers to Reinvent the Web

      This is all about a completely open, ungoverned Internet. It smells a lot like the George Soros Idea of a borderless world, does it not? We already have mortal enemies able to use our own infrastructure, the Internet, against us because encryption technology available to keep our banking transactions and other critical communication secure is also good enough that neither the military nor the justice department can crack the communication of suspected terrorists, not to mention criminals in general. Or at least they cannot crack it fast enough to be of value when they finally have the clear text.

      Is this the kind of world we want, so unregulated that our own laws and technology can be used against us with, so far at least, complete impunity?

      I can only speak for myself but I don’t want that kind of world. If a society cannot regulate itself and impose some degree of discipline upon its members, the road always leads downhill.

      It’s already bad enough that the Internet has given every pipsqueak cause and crusade a forum, where before the Internet, they could never get their message out because they simply have no power to attract anyone but the foolish, the ignorant and probably worse, all such a small component of society that they didn’t matter — at least not until they could organize with the ease of creating a simple web site and use email. I would not try to stop any of this but I damned well would like to monitor it so I could know if it represents any threat.

      Do I make sense or am I blowing smoke? This is a Utopian idea and I have never seen a Utopian idea become reality. I suspect that neither has anyone else.

      The idea that we can throw IANA/ICANN to the world to see what happens isn’t reality, it’s a fantasy we can’t afford to indulge.

      I can speak only for myself but I like my borders for the same reason I keep locks on my doors, so the wrong people can’t get in. I like my phone to be untappable without a court order. I like my Internet to be untappable without a court order and administered by someone who has my interest at heart and the current way it’s done has already enough problems, many of them just petty fights justified by nothing more than ego or profit as far as I can tell, without throwing the whole thing open to the “lowest” bidder.

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      Roy Hogue

      Why not simply fix what’s wrong with what we have? Why not regulate it and control it enough to assure that it can’t be used against us? Why not regulate it and control it enough that our use of it remains secure and private unless there is probable cause for a judge to issue a warrant to snoop into it.

      These are the things I want from it.

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    pat

    should have indicated Register article is two pages.

    from page 2:

    p2: What happens if the IANA contract is renewed and the transition doesn’t occur on September 30?
    Well, that all depends on what happens with the presidential elections. The official Republican platform has taken a very strong position against the IANA transition, meaning that a President Trump would almost certainly seek to prevent it from happening.
    Hillary Clinton’s position is less clear, although it is likely she supports the current administration’s position and would probably push for the transition to take place…
    PLUS The Reg perspective and Redo?…READ ALL

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      tom0mason

      How could Hillary Clinton judge what is best for digital national security, her past record on understanding and following basic secuity rules is woeful.

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        Mark D.

        That is an easy answer TomO: If it could make her and the C. Foundation money, then that is what she’ll decide.

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        Roy Hogue

        Tom,

        I don’t believe Hillary would even care. She just wants to be there. She’ll get to the Oval Office and her first act will be to stand in front of the mirror in her private bathroom and pat herself on the back saying, “Congratulations. You made it.” And then she will repeat that exercise every day until out of office again and for the rest of her responsibility she’ll guess at what to do or Bill will make the decisions. The woman is hopeless as a leader.

        And lest I forget, Mark D. is correct, she’ll miss no opportunity to make money.

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    William

    There is a parallel issue here, and I suspect that it is not a coincidence.
    There is a frenzy developing now around the introduction of driverless cars.
    On the one hand, control of the internet and the consequent control of information will be divested to a totalitarian organization like the UN.
    On the othe hand, freedom of movement will pass to whatever organization can get control of driverless cars.
    So, in one fell swoop the totalitarans get control of both information and movement.
    The whole world becomes one huge jail, and we are all inmates.
    Brave new world….

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      tom0mason

      There is also the requirements of installing ‘smart grid’ and ‘smart meter’ technology everywhere in the West.
      Your heating, A/C, etc., controlled over the internet.

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        Roy Hogue

        Over my dead body!

        But yes, I suspect it’s coming.

        My prediction: Driverless cars are going to be tried and abandoned because there’s no way to build in recognition and handling of every little surprise situation that can happen. There is an almost infinite range of possibilities to look out for. Only the human brain can adapt one experience to handle another. Fly By Wire and flight management computers have already proven that point and a lot of control over the airplane was given back to the pilot.

        Driverless cars will probably settle down to some form of driver assistance in staying between the lines, staying up with but not too close to the car in front and so on. And with all that technology in the car, how do you assure that the preflight check is done so you know it’s all working before you depend on it? Interesting thought.

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          Analitik

          But Tesla has just announced Autopilot 8 to be released sometime in the “next 2 weeks”

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            Roy Hogue

            Yes, there’s Tesla, with several notable crashes to its credit and at least one death, still saying we’re going to get the problem licked. And maybe they will.

            Airline Transport Pilots, the highest level of pilot licensing the FAA hands out, get a lot of training, they must master the airplane, literally be an engineer, they are supposedly well experienced and yet they make mistakes in handling the complex systems of planes like the 777 and 787.

            The average driver may not understand how his engine works, much less the intricacies of Autopilot 8. I think personally that were building ourselves something that we don’t need but are doing it just because we can. What the result will be I can only imagine or maybe just wait a few years and see it happening.

            But robotics is already at an astounding level of accomplishment. Watch how this thing stays on its feet when the snow under it gives way, throwing it off balance with such severity that you or I might fall down.

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      ROM

      Yeh! And I can see some individuals looking for a bit of fun and ordering a pizza on a wet cold black night from an outfit that has the latest gimmick of driverless cars to be delivered to a destination down some rural gravel road on the outskirts of the city that has just had 50 mms of rain.
      They wouldn’t find their “driverless” car for a week if it slipped off the road and got stuck somewhere and then they would have to replace all the sensors and electronics to get the thing to function again.

      We have had almost the equivalent of driverless tractors, headers / combines and self propelled crop spraying rigs of 40 plus metres span for a decade or more now in agriculture.
      These machines can dodge trees and obstructions without any input from the driver, turn the spray system or machine off and on at the ends of the paddock, automatically turn and line up and progressively switch on the machine for the next run down the paddock and tell the driverless machine Driver if something is not functioning properly or overheating or what ever or that he / she/ driver has only so much chemical or fuel or time or distance or room in the grain box or whatever left.

      And then it all turns to s—t when a bearing goes or you get a flat tire or the wife turns up in the ute and the driverless bits get all very confused over the new obstruction that keeps moving around.

      Driverless maybe one day but only on very clearly defined inner city road systems that are both designed and set up for driverless vehicles and are limited to small city areas in a large area nation such as Australia.

      The rest of the time a driver will need to be around to sort out things when they go awry providing of course that he / she isn’t playing with their smart phone texting everybody in sight or asleep from boredom.

      Its even getting bad at our local traffic lights as the drivers near the head of the traffic light queue while waiting those few seconds for the lights to change are now so indulged in texting somebody somewhere that those behind them can sit there for quite some time until it dawns on the texter that the lights have changed and they better get their ass into gear fast before somebody behind them really gets thoroughly irate.

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        Roy Hogue

        In New Zealand they are already experimenting with pizza delivery by drone.

        And as if the sky was not already crowded enough we now have a new class of FAA regulated aircraft in the U.S., the drone, some of them quite large and heavy if they’re to lift any kind of payload. I can see it now, Amazon’s drone delivering your purchase and the drone delivering your pizza for lunch both arriving at your front door at the same time, each with no knowledge of the other.

        Lots of fun.

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          William

          Yes, but think of the boom in shotgun sales.
          I can see sitting on my deck and shooting drones out of the sky as they pass over.
          Free pizza! Will have to be careful not to break any teeth on the pellets.

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    sophocles

    or the wife turns up in the ute and the driverless bits get all very confused over the new obstruction that keeps moving around.

    That is not unique to the mechanicals, robots or driverless bits. I’ve enjoyed a much more stable, predictable, crisis-free, stressless and relaxed life since my wife departed. :-)

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    Kratoklastes

    I don’t see the ‘there’ in this story – ICANN basically does TLDs (excluding some ccTLDs), stores indexes and helps avert IP duplicates. It doesn’t administer DNS; it doesn’t prevent or grant domain names; it doesn’t control access or content; there are ‘open’ alternatives.

    I’ve kept an eye on alternatives to ‘mainstream’ (i.e., heavily-surveilled) web structures since the mid-noughties – alternatives like OpenNIC, freenet, TOR and so forth. (I’ve also been an anti-IP rapscallion since Mosaic was the only browser and there was no such thing as Google).

    Anyhow… for the moment, none of the ‘fully-open internet’ ideas has really got traction to the extent that would enable it to step up and furnish a global, full-service alternative to ICANN – put simply, there are not yet enough people who understand that all politicians, everywhere, are parasitic scumbags who cannot be trusted… national political leaders even more so.

    That said, any time a .gov tries to cut the pipe some innovative dudes find a way to sticky-tape a local mesh together and enable global, real-time coverage of events; I participated in OpEgypt (when the internet helped dethrone “Hosni-Hotep” Mubarak) and what happened there showed that there is not a government in the world that can actually turn things off. When excrement meets aircon, even the most repressive regimes can’t even protect their own clandestine security forces (the entire Mukhabarat dissolved in 36 hours once an Anon freed the database containing the names of Mukhabarat informants and undercover thugs: thereafter, Hosni-hotep only had the “shabaab kantacki” – people who could be bribed to do pro-gov demonstrations in exchange for a bucket of KFC).

    Obviously anything that helps make people aware that a tiny sliver of megalomaniacs want to (continue to) control us, is good – people need to get it straight that the political class view us as their livestock, and ‘nations’ are tax farms that enable parasitic vermin to live in palaces.

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    Peta

    Reed Coray, it did take close to 30 yrs. to have a president worse then Jimmy Carter, but the Dems did it.

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