Senate Comes To Its Senses: Does NOT Support Ted Cruz's Plan To Block Internet Governance Transition

from the crisis-averted dept

So, just a few hours ago, the reports were still spreading that the Senate would absolutely include Ted Cruz’s preferred language that would block the (largely symbolic, but really important) transfer of control over the IANA functions of ICANN away from the Commerce Department. We’ve explained over and over and over again why this is important — including once this morning in response to Donald Trump suddenly taking a stand (an incredibly ignorant one, but a stand) on the issue.

And then… poof. The Senate Appropriations Committee released its “short term continuing resolution” (CR for short) and it does not include any language on blocking the IANA transition. So… all the talk and (misleading) hype was apparently a bunch of grandstanding and hot air over nothing. It may have just been posturing and used to negotiate something else. Or, maybe (just maybe) people who actually understood what was happening with the IANA transition were actually able to explain to those in charge how stupid all this rhetoric was. That would certainly be a nice explanation for this — though it seems tragically unlikely.

But, for the short term, this means a very dangerous thing for the internet, pushed for by Ted Cruz (and, as of yesterday, Donald Trump) has been avoided. It’s possible that the House could try to somehow move to block the transition, but that seems unlikely. So, we may have actually won one here and narrowly avoided political grandstanding mucking up a piece of the internet. Phew.

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Comments on “Senate Comes To Its Senses: Does NOT Support Ted Cruz's Plan To Block Internet Governance Transition”

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John (profile) says:

Mistake or Nut case?

So, is that a mistake… advocating a internet governing body consisting of the most censorship driven regimes… or are you completely mental?!

There is NO country and NO governing body that will allow more than the U.S. PERIOD. END OF DISCUSSION.

You look at the censorship laws of France, EU, China, Russian… you know, the people who will be controlling the internet. Is that REALLY who you want controlling things like domains?

If you think the U.S. is bad… you ain’t SEEN bad yet. What happens when China doesn’t like something and pressures the international “overseers” to ban the whole domain.

Or Iran? Or Russia? Oh, you said something about the King in Saudia Arabia.. guess what, your domain is gone now.

Seriously… this article got posted on Techdirt? It’s just plain DIRT.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Mistake or Nut case?

They are root servers, it seriously could happen.

Saying it won’t is like saying…
“If you like your doctor, you can keep your doctor”

At the end of the day, if this is all no big fucking deal, why in the fuck are they after it so much? Why is TD all over this so much? Why all the BIG NEWS?

Shit stinks and TD smells a bit on this one!

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re: Mistake or Nut case?

The root domain has no name, and is the server(s) that direct queries to the TLD’s, now .co,, .cn etc. so theoretically ICANN could censor the whole .com domain, but it could not censor, because techdirt’s name resolution is carried out by the .com DNS servers, which are not controlled by ICANN.

Skeeter says:

Re: Re: Re:2 Mistake or Nut case?

Actually, ICANN (in globalist hands, controlled by a foreign body) COULD start drawing ‘lines of connectivity’ relatively easy. You would, in effect, have them performing a routing table function. How would that look?

Well, .cn can only do connections, but .us can connect to anyone, while .eu or .gb could connect with .cn or .ru without allowing .us in.

See, for those who tell you that it’s not what it appears to be, you have to consider that in another’s hands, it could easily ‘shape-shift’ into a giant global router map.

Now, do you really want ICANN firewalls set up through a makeshift router table, controlled by a foreign nation, ready to ‘change the lines’ the moment they want to embargo a region?

I think not.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Mistake or Nut case?

Yes, you really need to go and read it yourself.

“Much of its work has concerned the Internet’s global Domain Name System, including policy development for internationalization of the DNS system, introduction of new generic top-level domains (TLDs), and the operation of root name servers.”

Yea, nothing dangerous there. DNS is a part of the life Blood of the Internet, that can seriously be abused and wreck some fucking havoc!

Mike Masnick (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re: Mistake or Nut case?

Yea, nothing dangerous there. DNS is a part of the life Blood of the Internet, that can seriously be abused and wreck some fucking havoc!

And transferring IANA away from Commerce HELPS PROTECT IT.

It makes sure that it’s managed by a multistakeholder process — including actual techies — RATHER THAN GOVERNMENTS.

Anonymous Coward says:

To anyone thinking icann moving out of the U.S. Government as a bad thing, come on. The hubris we must have to insist that we’re the only nation running the internet. If we’re going to keep parody with the rest of the world’s technical experts then we’re going to have to level the playing field and quit thinking we have some moral superiority over the world. Many people think we’re just as bad as you think we’re good

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