There are big developments happening in the future of the web, with rumblings that the internet could break ties with Department of Commerce oversight in the next year.
The head of the nonprofit group that oversees the world’s Internet addresses expressed confidence Thursday that it would be privatized and out of US government control by year’s end.
Fadi Chehade’s comments came despite criticism in the US Congress, where some lawmakers have resisted the plan to end Washington’s key management role in the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN).
Chehade said all the necessary components for a new stewardship scheme are accounted for and there will be “major legitimizing endorsements” from several countries in coming weeks.
“It is now up to the community to wrap them up, put them in a nice little box with a bow and ship them to Washington,” Chehade said, of the pieces of a plan to supplant a contract ICANN has with the US Department of Commerce.
The comments come a year after the US government said it would end its technical oversight role for the Internet domain system, with the stipulation that it be managed without direct control by governments or intergovernmental bodies like the United Nations.
The US plan seeks to turn over this function to what Chehade calls a “global multistakeholder community.”
But what constitutes a global, multi-stakeholder community? The details are unclear. To paraphrase Rep. Nancy Pelosi, I suppose we will have to “pass it before we see who regulates it.”