[discuss] Possible approaches to solving "problem no. 1"

Keith Davidson keith at internetnz.net.nz
Mon Feb 17 01:26:38 UTC 2014

Hi Michel,

On 17/02/2014 11:24 a.m., Michel Gauthier wrote:
> Dear Keith,
> thank you for this very comprehensive analyzis I will certainly
> professionnally use (I understand that we are an open mailing list and
> therefore that this text of yours is public domain). What would be
> interesting would be to consider the relations between ccTLDs and a
> VGNIC specialized areas like EDI, banks or social networks, a natural
> language or a large country.

Of course this information is openly available and useable by all...

> I just went and see your site. And I liked what I read:
> - InternetNZ was set up, years ago, to keep the Internet open and
> uncaptureable
> - a better world through a better Internet
> - We will work with all political parties in order to get the best for
> New Zealand's Internet.
> - We're saying, these days, that we are also about making sure that the
> people who use the Internet are getting the most out of it.
> This seems to raise a question for all of us: what is a better internet?
> Your text seems to imply an internet which brings a  better world. I
> think we can all agree, however the IG problem is not to decide what is
> a better world: this is the politicians job. Yet they do not agree and
> we want, like you, work with all of them.

There are some simplistic aspects to a better "Internet" e.g. more 
affordable, more available, with richer more meaningful content etc etc.

It gets more tricky when it is a question of defending the openness of 
the Internet and freedom of expression and freedom of association, when 
there is content that encourages severely anti-social behaviours 
especially when inciting self harm or harm to others. It also gets 
trickier to defend the open Internet when there is a popular belief that 
copyright infringement is acceptable - and the converse, where copyright 
holders seek to terminate Internet access for people who have downloaded 
infringing material.

> This seems to be a loop?
> Is that not actually our real problem?
> A problem we might tend to hide too easily behind a supposed political
> divide about the US role?

I think my response above dismisses the idea of a loop in the basic 
principles, but I understand your connecting these dots.

I also think that in the ccTLD world, there is probably universal 
agreement that we would like the US Government to not be in "control" of 
our IANA database entries. But until we have an understanding of what 
might be a viable alternative to the US Governments role, and a clear 
roadmap of how to transition, then I think possibly the majority of 
ccTLDs would favour the status quo. There is an argument that US 
Government unilateral control = bad. Furthermore that UN / Treaty / 
Multilateral control = good. So in maths, if 1 = bad, more can only = 
worse, not better. And given some Governments are very hands-on in their 
control of (what they see as) "their" ccTLD, other Governments are happy 
with a hands-off, arms length relationship. Also, given there are 246 
ASCII ccTLDs and only 192 / 193 UN "Countries", there are some ccTLDs 
without Government. An example is Antarctica, where many Governments 
assert a sovereign right, an ongoing battle where the ccTLD is probably 
least concern to those Governments.



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