Spar of Views over Internet Treaty

At a telecommunication conference on Wednesday, most of the countries zeroed on the idea that United Nation agency will continue to play an active role in Internet governance, but should dominate other member countries. The meet took place in Dubai and lasted until 1.30 a.m. various diplomats and technology people from the west did not agree for the International Telecommunication Union’s extended role over the Internet as it can lead to high censorship and lack of anonymity for Internet Users all around the globe. In opposition Hamadoun Toure, Secretary-General ITU emphasized that the document promises a balance and will give the necessary freedom to the Western Countries as part of the Treaty.

ITU representatives wanted to avoid formal voting. However, other members wanted the conference to address the revisions in the treaty along with a resolution as most of the proposed re-written document was based on the clauses suggested by Toure. The main Agenda was “Addressing”, inclusive of internet addressing controlled by Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN), a U.S. based Non-Profit organisation. The U.S. Ambassador tweeted “The U.S. remains committed to keeping the Internet out of the ITRs (treaty)”

While Americans and Europeans completely opposed the document, Russia along with China, United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia with other members, resubmitted a Joint Proposal demanding an extended control over the Internet, which has been set aside by opposition. The only resolution with major support says: “continue to perform the necessary steps for ITU to play an active role in the multi-stakeholder model of the Internet.”

A reference to the model suggested at a summit held in 2005 according to which, States held the authority to decide on the matters of Internet-related public policy issues irrespective of private sectors, civil and international groups playing important roles. No one expected so many complications during the meet. A U.S. delegate refused to reveal much details and the matter is too sensitive at the moment. Several non profit industrial and civil groups who have placed major roles in Internet development agreed with U.S. government’s viewpoint about the extended U.N agency’s control over the internet.

In addition, they nodded a yes for the procedure to be limited to only few member countries. Emma LJanso who works at the Centre for Democracy and Technology did not find this whole voting process legitimate and suggested that such matters demanded proper time and must not be rushed onto.

About the Author

Alison Simpson is an Business and general assignment reporter. Alison Simpson covers financial markets and Wall Street, concentrating on developments affecting individual investors and their portfolios. Alison graduated from Trinity College in Hartford, Conn., and later earned a master’s degree from Northwestern's Medill School of Journalism. Alison also covered congress for Defense News and providing regular coverage of the budget debate on Capitol Hill and its implications for national security.

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