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[ NNSquad ] Re: Saving the Internet, Ourselves, and the Future

There's this unhelpful reduction of the choices to
"multistakeholderism" vs. "solely governmental" in the discussion of
governance of the Internet that we've seen so far.

Multistakeholderism might sound fine except when you recognize that
it's the status quo, which means entities like ICANN -- and in
general, a defaulting to narrow private interests gaining sway over
transnational matters.  Whereas the solely governments side of the
supposed mutually exclusive set of options is unnecessarily defined as
governments doing everything they expect to do by their regular
nature, just as they do within their localities, only now

But the most important problem is that transnational policies are
being erected by entities that do not recognize the impact those
policies have on the rights of the people.

There are other avenues to take: people can insist that oversight
bodies recognize that they secure their rights by means of the
constitutions and governing institutions to which they have consented
locally.  This would allow the tendency to make policy decisions
without regard for fundamental liberties that we see in entities like
ICANN to be checked, if those entities organize themselves to formally
recognize this.  And it lets them do so without according full
governmental style powers to some "solely governmental" body.

Perhaps more importantly, we'd start recognizing how matters affect
fundamental concerns of the people within a transition to a better
system, without constantly getting distracted by the reductive set of
options presently being discussed, which effectively keeps us from
thinking constructively about how to approach a medium that transcends

Some may note that I suggested something like this to ICANN in its
recent discussion of its Vision Statement (they are now recognizing
that they are talking about both vision and mission).  You can see my
rough description here:


On Thu, May 31, 2012 at 11:31 PM,  <dpreed@reed.com> wrote:
> Lauren -
> We are at a crossroads, I agree.  And you put your finger on the large
> majority of businesses who view it as their "right" to exploit it and trash
> it without giving back.
> The list of those who have worked hard, fought, and argued, tried incredibly
> hard to constructively create the networking environment that opens
> interoperable, evolvable, innovative, and open-ended information sharing and
> information is long. Most have made little money for their efforts after
> changing the world in ways that enable the amazing opportunities that have
> arisen are probably proud of their accomplishments, correctly so.
> So it's incredibly sad to watch this amazing thing (which has nothing to do
> with the fibers, the pipes, the copper, etc.) be converted into a tool of
> control, of power, of exclusion, and so forth by companies first, and now
> governments and international diplomats.
> Once upon a time, Jon Postel, one of the many amazing people who catalyzed
> this thing, set a great example for speaking "truth to power" in his
> incredible contributions to Internet "governance".
> I am very afraid that his era is finally over. Individuals can make a big
> difference, but they are being "picked off" one by one by a new generation
> that does not "get it".
> I'm not giving up, but I wonder if we are reaching our last stand... I hope
> not.
> David
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