“The Internet was invented and developed in the U.S., and it has completely transformed the way people communicate and do business in every corner of the world. Since 1998, the U.S. has been committed to transitioning management of the Internet’s domain name system to an independent entity that reflects the broad diversity of the global Internet community. NTIA’s announcement today that it is beginning the process of transferring additional domain name functions to ICANN is the next phase in this transition. It is also consistent with other efforts the U.S. and our allies are making to promote a free and open Internet, and to preserve and advance the current multi-stakeholder model of global Internet governance.” Link “My colleagues and I on the Commerce Committee will be watching closely to see if the transition NTIA has announced results in an acceptable structure to ensure a stable and free Internet. But I trust the innovators and entrepreneurs more than the bureaucrats-whether they're in D.C. or Brussels.” Link

“I welcome the announcement by the National Telecommunications and Information Administration to transition from its role in coordinating the Internet’s domain name system to a multistakeholder governance community, guided by the principles of an open, secure, stable and resilient Internet.” Link


“And we have to decide: Do we fully embrace the original vision of the Internet’s founders and truly commit ourselves to the multistakeholder system that they helped establish? Or do we tell the world that one single government, our government, must maintain its singular contractual oversight over these vital functions? We are choosing to put our faith in the multistakeholder system, knowing that the Internet’s future direction is best led by the people who helped make it what it is today -innovators, entrepreneurs, activists, and users who together provide its incalculable economic and social value. Since our announcement, some critics have claimed that this move opens the door for certain authoritarian states to somehow seize control of the Internet, blocking free speech and inhibiting a multitude of legitimate activity. Nothing could be further from the truth. Our transition announcement asks the [ICANN] to convene a multistakeholder process to develop a community-supported proposal for transitioning the U.S. government’s role. ICANN will work collaboratively with the directly affected parties. . . . In developing this proposal, the Internet community will finally fully own and perform these functions; we are thereby taking stewardship by any government or group of governments off the table. Given the remarkable success that the Internet has become through the efforts of these and other stakeholders, we are confident that the fiercely devoted Internet community will serve as appropriate stewards of these functions, and we and like-minded governments will defend their right and ability to do so.” Link


“This is a major step towards implementing a global, multistakeholder system of Internet administration.” Link

“The U.S. Chamber strongly supports the U.S. government’s opposition to any proposal ‘that replaces the NTIA role with a government-led or inter-governmental organization solution.. . . We urge the U.S. government to require a careful and responsible transition that preserves and strengthens the multi-stakeholder model.” Link

“Since the birth of ICANN in 1998, it has been clear that the United States’ custodial role over the Internet’s unique identifier systems was only meant to be temporary. This announcement is both welcome and timely in signaling the process to end that custodial role begins now. Whatever process ICANN and its partners utilize to design this final transition must engage stakeholders worldwide where they live and work – and not just at meetings held by the organizations concerned as part of their regular activities.” This is great news for Internet users and businesses around the world that depend on an open, stable, secure Internet. The revelations about U.S. surveillance over the past year made clear that national policies which impact the Internet will come under increasing scrutiny and that the Internet belongs to the world.”


Link “This is a significant milestone in the transition of Internet governance to a global multistakeholder model, and Cisco welcomes this development. We applaud the NTIA for seeking to complete the final phase of the privatization of DNS management, as outlined by the U.S. Government in 1997. Cisco has long supported an open and innovative multi-stakeholder Internet governance process and this next step in its evolution. NTIA has outlined a powerful process for the move towards full privatization and globalization of DNS management. It is based upon the recognition that the ecosystem of organizations, groups and individuals which make up the multistakeholder Internet governance community is mature and robust and can stand on its own.” Link “This is an important step in the ongoing evolution of the global Internet. NTIA is to be commended for its historical stewardship, its current thoughtful and pro-active approach, and its global leadership throughout. The U.S. is looking to the future, promoting leadership and ideas from the global multistakeholder community, and establishing clear criteria to ensure the stability and security of a remarkably wellfunctioning system. We expect that other governments and stakeholders will join with the U.S. in committing to this vision.”


“We especially applaud NTIA's resolve to 'maintain the security, stability, and resiliency of the Internet Domain Name System' and not to 'accept a proposal that replaces the NTIA role with a government-led or an inter-governmental organization solution.” Link

CAMERON KERRY Fmr General Counsel Department of Commerce

“NTIA’s role in ICANN has taken on heavy symbolic freight way out of proportion to its value. While there is nothing in the role that enables any of the NSA surveillance revealed by Edward Snowden, the existence of this U.S. government role feeds a perception that the United States is somehow manipulating the Internet for its own economic and strategic advantage. It’s not a perception on the part of foreigners only: in criticizing NTIA’s decision, Newt Gingrich described it as “giving up control of the Internet.” The U.S. does not have “control of the Internet.” Along with other countries for which the free flow of information, ideas, and innovation matter, it does have a large stake in continuing to protect the Internet from government control. Relinquishing NTIA’s residual role will makes that job easier.” Link


“I understand in theory why we would like to have a multi-stakeholder process. I favor that. I just know that a lot of these so-called multistakeholders are really governments that want to gag people and restrict access to the internet.” A lot of people … have been trying to take this authority from the U.S. for the sole purpose of cracking down on Internet freedom and limiting it and having governments protect their backsides instead of empowering their people.” Link


"In the end, I'd rather pay a spurious tax to people who want my money than see [ICANN] controlled by entities who want my silence. . . . .[U.N. oversight would be a] fate worse than death [for the Internet]. Link ESTER DYSON ICANN Founding Chair


“We built it, we paid for it, it’s ours, and we are going to keep it.” Referring to Panama Canal

“Since the Web is worldwide — and since it has proven such an effective catalyst for pro-democratic revolution — it has become a battleground that many fight to control. . . . Many governments are lobbying for regulatory control by the United Nations or a governmental regime, opposing this takeover and preserving Internet freedom must be a top national priority.” LINK “Giving up control of ICANN” [will give increased power to countries like Russia and China to define how the Internet works] This decision represents another hostile step by the administration on the heels of net neutrality and the FCC’s CIN Study that threatens our freedom of speech.” Link


“Evidently relinquishing America’s control of the internet via our Icann control of domain names was what Obama meant when he led his adoring followers in those strange, kind of creepy chants of ‘YesWe-Can,’” Surrendering our control of the Internet is a colossal foreign policy error with long term negative repercussions for freedom. This is nothing more than a gift to authoritarian regimes who seek to stifle the freedom the Internet gives to voices around the world fighting for basic human rights”. Link Is this an inevitable stage of Internet governance evolution or a manufactured crisis designed to enhance autonomy and diminish accountability. . . . True evolution is a slow and organic process, but what has been occurring lately is more akin to GMO-style intervention to force predetermined evolutionary leaps. . . . . ICANN has played a hyperactive role in bringing events to this point, and it remains to be seen when the dust finally settles whether it will regret trading the rather benign scrutiny of the U.S. for an oversight regime that may well be far more complicated and politicized. Link “Over time the Internet will become much less American, much more diverse, and vastly more political, both internally and geopolitically. And expect a less American Internet to naturally become less commercial, less Silicon Valleycentric, and less friendly to property. . . . To simplify, the EU is calling for a more consumer-centric, opt-in privacy model in stark contrast to America’s ecommerce-centric, opt-out privacy


model. This is a frontal assault on Silicon Valley’s privacy-hostile, dominant advertising business model. In sum, the precipitating cause of both of these two decisions is the same – Snowden revelations. However, the consequential effect of these decisions is the opposite. The U.S. decision cedes its sovereign power to a new sovereign-less power. In contrast, the EU’s decision asserts much more sovereign power over a sovereignresistant Internet. As the Internet’s moorings increasingly detach from America, the Internet ship will enter the uncharted waters of Internet realpolitik.” Link “The U.S. role in protecting the open Internet is similar to its role enforcing freedom of the seas. The U.S. has used its power over the Internet exclusively to protect the interconnected networks from being closed off, just as the U.S. Navy protects sea lanes. Imagine the alarm if America suddenly announced that it would no longer patrol the world's oceans.” Link


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