International Governance

Reforms and Standards for the ICANN Transition

By Paul Rosenzweig
Monday, June 16, 2014, 2:37 PM

Along with three co-authors, I've just released a paper through The Heritage Foundation entitled: "Protecting Internet Freedom and American Interests: Required Reforms and Standards for ICANN Transition."  In the paper we lay out a series of recommendations for the transition of control over the internet naming function to ICANN.  Here is the abstract:

The U.S. should not end its role in the assignment of Internet names and numbers before adequate checks and balances are put in place to ensure that an independent Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) acting without U.S. oversight is transparent and accountable, and cannot be hijacked by governments or intergovernmental organizations. The conditions articulated by the National Telecommunications and Information Administration give little practical guidance or details on what would constitute an acceptable alternative mechanism. Congress should define and detail minimum protections, including protections to preserve freedom of expression and reforms designed to enhance ICANN accountability and insulate it from government capture, which must be in place before the U.S. will agree to the transition.