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.

Reader Comments

Subscribe: RSS

View by: Time | Thread


  • identicon
    John, 22 Sep 2016 @ 12:48pm

    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.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • icon
      Richard Bennett (profile), 22 Sep 2016 @ 12:51pm

      Re: Mistake or Nut case?

      ICANN could not censor Techdirt even if it wanted to. Sorry, but we can wish for that all we want but it's not going to happen.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • identicon
        Anonymous Coward, 22 Sep 2016 @ 1:19pm

        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!

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • identicon
          Anonymous Coward, 22 Sep 2016 @ 1:29pm

          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 techdirt.com, because techdirt's name resolution is carried out by the .com DNS servers, which are not controlled by ICANN.

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

          • icon
            Richard Bennett (profile), 22 Sep 2016 @ 1:37pm

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

            Right, and what do you think would happen if ICANN tried to nuke .com? Slap yourself a few times.

            reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

            • identicon
              Anonymous Coward, 24 Sep 2016 @ 11:06am

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

              If they tried to do they they'd get burned to the ground by everyone that uses .com. They aren't macedonian collection agency level of incompetent.

              reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

          • identicon
            Skeeter, 22 Sep 2016 @ 4:20pm

            Re: Re: Re: Re: 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 inter-.cn 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.

            reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • identicon
          Anonymous Coward, 22 Sep 2016 @ 1:45pm

          Re: Re: Re: Mistake or Nut case?

          If they don't let IANA go, nothing is stopping russia or china from making their own dns-like standard and chopping up their pieces of the internet. the internet only works if we all use the same standards.

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

          • identicon
            Anonymous Coward, 22 Sep 2016 @ 1:58pm

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

            Correct me if I am wrong but things like the Great Firewall of China and Countries like North Korea are already doing that.

            Besides, its a coalition, they could still do that if they just decided it was more fun that way regardless!

            reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • identicon
          Anonymous Coward, 22 Sep 2016 @ 5:17pm

          Re: Re: Re: Mistake or Nut case?

          fyi, I did keep the same Doctor.

          The internet is nothing like medicine ....
          oh, you were using the reference because you view them both as lies - I get it, sota even though it is a stupid analogy.

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • identicon
        tom, 22 Sep 2016 @ 2:39pm

        Re: Re: Mistake or Nut case?

        Says who?
        you might want to read some of the issues brought up before you make a definitive statement.
        http://www.heritage.org/research/reports/2016/04/icann-transition-proposal-the-us-should-p roceed-with-caution

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • icon
          Richard Bennett (profile), 22 Sep 2016 @ 3:22pm

          Re: Re: Re: Mistake or Nut case?

          Heritage's opinions come from two lawyers. Need I say more?

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

          • identicon
            Anonymous Coward, 24 Sep 2016 @ 11:08am

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

            Yes, do say more. There are good lawyers, bad lawyers, and incompetent asshole lawyers, and you have not pointed out which faction these ones reside in.

            reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 22 Sep 2016 @ 1:21pm

      Re: Mistake or Nut case?

      Go and educate yourself as to what ICANN does, and what the root domain which it manages does, as ICANN does not control what you think it does.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • identicon
        Anonymous Coward, 22 Sep 2016 @ 2:01pm

        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!

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • icon
          Mike Masnick (profile), 22 Sep 2016 @ 3:29pm

          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.

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • icon
      Mattheus (profile), 22 Sep 2016 @ 1:43pm

      Re: Mistake or Nut case?

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

      Switzerland has much better internet privacy laws the United States does.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • icon
        Richard Bennett (profile), 22 Sep 2016 @ 1:46pm

        Re: Re: Mistake or Nut case?

        Russia protects Snowden and Ecuador protects Assange. Doesn't that mean they love Internet freedom?

        Or are they just trolling. Hmm...hard to know.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • icon
          That One Guy (profile), 22 Sep 2016 @ 3:47pm

          Re: Re: Re: Mistake or Nut case?

          Given who they'd be trolling I'm fine with them doing so even if their motives really are as simple as trolling the USG.

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • icon
      techflaws (profile), 22 Sep 2016 @ 10:09pm

      Re: Mistake or Nut case?

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

      As amply demonstrated in the Rojadirecta case?

      PERIOD. END OF DISCUSSION.

      Yeah... no.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    Richard Bennett (profile), 22 Sep 2016 @ 12:48pm

    This is good news

    It's good to see the Senate disregarding Cruz's nonsense. Cruz learned from the NN advocates that lying is better than honesty for passing Internet regulations, but it's good it didn't work this time.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    That Anonymous Coward (profile), 22 Sep 2016 @ 1:26pm

    Oh look another example of Congress not doing anything beneficial for those they claim to represent & instead wasting time & effort to get soundbites.

    Xenophobic jingoism has become to way to motivate 'voters' who accept everything said as the gospel, & never consider they are just getting played.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    Padpaw (profile), 22 Sep 2016 @ 1:28pm

    ruining the country for personal gain seems to be the one thing in common when it comes to politicains

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    Ehud Gavron (profile), 22 Sep 2016 @ 1:54pm

    Senate comes to its senses

    Politics being what it is... the Senate did not "come to its senses". It simply failed to screw one more thing up.

    Nothing new. It's just politics.

    Ehud

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 22 Sep 2016 @ 10:33pm

    Oh, it's a Masnick article of course

    "largely symbolic, but really important"

    So not symbolic at all?

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 23 Sep 2016 @ 6:24am

    No god, please no! ICANN will shutdown the internets!

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 23 Sep 2016 @ 1:08pm

    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

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]


Add Your Comment

Have a Techdirt Account? Sign in now. Want one? Register here
Get Techdirt’s Daily Email
Use markdown for basic formatting. HTML is no longer supported.
  Save me a cookie
Follow Techdirt
Techdirt Gear
Show Now: Takedown
Advertisement
Report this ad  |  Hide Techdirt ads
Essential Reading
Techdirt Deals
Report this ad  |  Hide Techdirt ads
Techdirt Insider Chat
Advertisement
Report this ad  |  Hide Techdirt ads
Recent Stories
Advertisement
Report this ad  |  Hide Techdirt ads

Close

Email This

This feature is only available to registered users. Register or sign in to use it.