[discuss] Ambiguity is the enemy of the Internet governance debate [Was: we need to fix what may be broken]

Roland Perry roland at internetpolicyagency.com
Fri Apr 18 11:53:36 UTC 2014

In message <B522320E-F9A4-4315-925D-9309F35874B7 at gmail.com>, at 17:15:57 
on Thu, 17 Apr 2014, George Sadowsky <george.sadowsky at gmail.com> writes
>I propose that we cluster issues in Internet governance into two main clusters:
>1. issues that primarily or totally concerned with the technical operation of the Internet, including communications infrastructure management,
>standards setting and adoption, and identifier management.
>2. issues that concern use of and behavior on the Internet that is of public interest and concern, such as consular protection, privacy,
>confidentiality, cybercrime and the like.  This is clearly not an exhaustive list

Are these substantially different from the two identifiers I've always 
used: Connectivity [vs] Content.

There are some overlaps to deal with, as you say; for example is DMARC a 
connectivity issue (I no longer have guaranteed connectivity to Yahoo 
email account holders) or content (the scheme is designed to repel 
potentially harmful content, although without actually examining the 
content itself, just the headers which are there to facilitate the 

But on the whole, I've always thought it a useful distinction.

For the avoidance of doubt I think DNS is part of connectivity, because 
it's designed to work out where to send things, although even that 
begins to get a bit frayed at the edges because things like wine.com and 
patagonia.com appear to many people to be content-within-the DNS.

You inadvertently introduced aviation, and perhaps that's a helpful 
analogy. One set of rules for how planes are designed and maintained, 
how pilots fly them and so on. Another set of rules about who is allowed 
on board, what they can have in their hand baggage, and how they are 
expected to behave once seated in the plane.
Roland Perry

More information about the discuss mailing list