February 26, 2015
[From Sally Shipman Wentworth , Internet Society VP of Public Policy]
Today the eyes of many people around the world have been focused on Washington, DC, as (http://www.fcc.gov/events/open-commission-meeting-february-2015) the U.S. Federal Communications Committee (FCC) held an Open Meeting where they voted on a Report and Order around “Protecting and Promoting the Open Internet”. More commonly known as the ruling on “Network Neutrality”, the vote today represents what is a potentially major shift in the longstanding policy of the United States with regard to regulation of Internet services.
The Internet Society has always supported the fundamental values of a global, open Internet grounded in transparency, access and choice. We believe that openness should be the guiding principle that continues to enable the success and growth of the Internet. The goals of the U.S. Federal Communication Commission’s (FCC) Open Internet Order – providing U.S. consumers with meaningful transparency, addressing concerns over blocking and discrimination, clarifying the role of reasonable network management, and enabling the permissionless innovation that has led to the success of the Internet today – are all really important.
However, if we look at this in light of a range of proposals around the world that aim to apply policies designed for telecommunications networks and services to the Internet, we consider it possible that such an approach could result in the opposite consequences. We realize that there are unique legislative and procedural challenges in the U.S., but we are concerned with the FCC’s decision to base new rules for the modern Internet on decades-old telephone regulations designed for a very different technological era.
Regulatory approaches that could affect the sustainability of the global, open Internet need to take into account the technical reality of how networks are operated and managed. Allowing the necessary technological flexibility to keep pace with rapid innovation is integral to ensuring the continued growth and success of the Internet. We believe we need to be careful that this flexibility is not undermined by the use of a regulatory framework designed to govern the old telecommunications system.
The explosive innovation that has occurred over the last two decades has allowed for communities across the world to participate in and benefit from connectivity, both socially and economically. Promoting Internet access and availability is integral to the success of our digital future, and global public policies should continue to be guided by (http://www.internetsociety.org/internet-invariants-what-really-matters) the fundamentals that have contributed to the Internet’s growth. We believe a regulatory paradigm ill-suited for the current and future Internet ecosystem could have severe implications on this continued success.
As a global organization, we recognize that the FCC’s decision today applies only to the United States, but we also realize that other nations may look to the FCC’s ruling as a model for their own regulations. For that reason it’s critical to us that regulations of this nature be compatible with the principles that have led to the innovation and opportunity that are the hallmarks of today’s global Internet.
We know that these are complex issues and that working to maintain the benefits of an open Internet presents us all with an ongoing challenge. We look forward to reviewing the full text of the FCC’s Order once it’s released.
February 15, 2015
[Singapore – 15 February 2015] – The Internet Society Board of Trustees, during its Board meeting 14-15 February 2015, applauded the progress made by the global Internet community on the IANA stewardship transition and encouraged continued momentum to ensure a robust and successful proposal that leads to globalization. Acknowledging the milestones that have been reached to date, the Board stressed that a successful transition will reinforce the value of the collaborative, multistakeholder model.
The Internet Society recognizes the complexity of this transition and that core issues of accountability, security and stability are at stake. The Board noted that it is encouraged by the transparency employed by the IANA operating communities and by the broad engagement of the Internet community in the process.
The Board of Trustees also welcomed the proposals submitted by the Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF) and the Regional Internet Registries (RIRs) and is encouraged by the solid progress being made on the names’ community proposal. Furthermore, it congratulates ICANN on the effective operation of the IANA functions.
Internet Society Board of Trustees Chair, Bob Hinden, noted, “This process is a true reflection of the power of the multistakeholder approach to bring parties together to solve complex problems. We encourage all parties to stay focused on the goal of achieving a globally interoperable Internet that continues to evolve as a platform for permissionless innovation.”
In this regard, the Internet Society underscores the importance of the following key principles to support the sustainable evolution of the Internet ecosystem:
• Accountability – Robust measures are essential in ensuring that no single group captures the IANA functions.
• Transparency – A multistakeholder, bottom-up framework is the most appropriate model for the operation of the IANA functions.
Recognizing the success that ICANN has had in uniting the community to discuss the issues at hand, the Board of Trustees urges all participants to maintain momentum in the process and to continue to work together to ensure the successful transition of the IANA functions to the global multistakeholder community.
Kathryn Brown, Internet Society President and CEO, emphasized that globalization of the IANA functions is a critical step in providing additional confidence in the collaborative and inclusive Internet governance model. “Smooth operation of the Internet depends upon a global, coordinated approach to managing these shared resources. The process to transition and globalize the IANA functions is a demonstration of global multistakeholder community cooperation in action.”
January 16, 2015
On Sunday 25 January 2015, at 4pm the Internet Society’s New York Chapter(ISOC-NY) will present “Bitcoin for Rockstars – a fireside chat with D.A. Wallach” at TurnToTech NYC. The traditional existing methods of registering works and distributing music royalties are archaic, arcane, inefficient, and unsuited to the global networked marketplace. D.A. Wallach recently proposed thata decentralized, open, global ledger, based on bitcoin style blockchain technology, as an optimal solution for credits and rights information about music. Then a system of “smart contracts” could facilitate the distribution of funds. Thus:
In the proposed music rights network, each song, recording, rights-holder, creator, and payor would have its own unique address on the ledger. And complimenting this ledger would be “smart contracts,” programmatic rules defining how the addresses relate to each other and automating their interactions. For example, Katy Perry’s “Dark Horse” would have its own address, as would Katy Perry herself, each of her collaborators, and each of the companies entitled to royalties from the song. One set of “smart contracts” could connect all of these addresses to one another.
Spotify, YouTube and other services could then issue all-in royalty micro-payments (aggregating all negotiated fees) directly to the “Dark Horse” address every time the song is played. The smart contracts connected to the “Dark Horse” address would recognize the source of the payment—say, Spotify—and then instantly split and redirect royalties to all the addresses entitled to payments from the service for the song. Katy Perry, her label, her publisher, and her collaborators would all have total visibility into payments received by the “Dark Horse” address, and each would receive its shares instantly in its own wallet. This software-based relay station for royalty and licensing payments would put creators at the center of the action, allowing them to understand how much money their works were generating, and from which services or licensees. It would also give artists and songwriters instant access to the funds generated by their work, obviating the long waiting periods they currently endure.
We invite you, on a Sunday afternoon, to join D.A. Wallach and ISOC-NY to explore this fascinating concept! Our interlocutor will be Aram Sinnreich of Rutgers University. Please RSVP via ISOC-NY’s meetup.
What: Bitcoin for Rockstars – a fireside chat with D.A. Wallach
Where: TurnToTech, 184 5th Ave, 4th Floor, NYC (@22nd St)
When: Sunday January 25 2014 – 4pm-6pm | 2100-2300 UTC
December 25, 2014
October 30, 2014
Cosponsored by Disruptive Technologists
and the New York Chapter of the Federal Communications Bar Association
Infrastructure in this sense could be physical (fiber in the ground) – or open source software, legal/policy, etc. – more broadly any type of support …
October 14, 2014
We’re excited to cosponsor two events with the Disruptive Technologists!
Details on the first below. We’ll follow with an all-day event at Brooklyn Law on November 11 with panels providing a more in depth look at a wide variety of new technologies to be followed with hackathons to fill gaps in their realization.
Please join Disruptive Technologists for a panel discussion moderated by:
Bruce Bachenheimer, Professor & Director, Entrepreneurship Lab at Pace University, NYC
1. David Rose, VC & Serial Entrepreneur, New York Angels, Gust.com
2. Jessica Singleton, Digital Director at Office of New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio
3. Chez Mee, Brand Innovation Strategist & Serial Entrepreneur
The financial crisis of 2008 was an inflection point where Mayor Bloomberg was widely credited for reinventing the traditional Wall Street Economy through technology entrepreneurship. Yet some criticized his success as having been more of a wealth creation model for a narrow section of the City.
Are we now at a second inflation point? At the recent press conference in Dumbo to announce Digital.NYC, the City’s new hub for tech and startups, Mayor Bill De Blasio talked about his new technology initiatives. So this brings up the question: Will things get worse or will they get better? What will happen to the gains made by the Bloomberg Administration? Or will there not even be a new inflection point, and things will remain the same? What does it take to make a successful tech ecosystem?
Disruptive Technologists is an organization dedicated to finding out what makes Disrupters tick – what they are thinking, how they do what they do and then inspire, promote, support, mentor and advise in order to future Disruption in NYC through tech. We do this through the weekly publication DisruptiveTechnologists.com, monthly panels through our organization Digital Technologists in NYC and through our monthly newsletter. We also report on and cover new Disrupters and attend the hottest events in order to spread their Disruptive words. We offer an intimate look at this new breed of tech entrepreneurs and their innovative products and services.
Join us for the event to hear from some of the most qualified, dedicated, and passionate Disrupters in the business.
October 10, 2014
On Thursday October 16 2014 the Internet Society’s New York Chapter (ISOC-NY), Connecting .nyc, and the Brooklyn Law Incubator & Policy Clinic (BLIP) will host a Remote Hub for the 51st Meeting of the Internet Corporation of Assigned Names and Numbers aka ICANN 51, taking place in Los Angeles. The hub will be fully interactive, with 2-way video, and participate in 3 sessions. Plentiful refreshments will be supplied, courtesy of ICANN. Please register via ISOC-NY’s meetup, or by emailing email@example.com.
What: NYC Remote Hub for ICANN 51
Where: Blip Clinic Dumbo Outpost, 55 Washington St #321, Brooklyn, NY 11201 (map)
When: Thursday October 16 2014 11am-8pm EDT
1. Enhancing ICANN Accountability 11:30am-12:45pm EDT
2. Community Discussion with the IANA Stewardship Coordination Group (ICG) 1pm-3pm EDT
3. Public Forum 4:30pm-8pm EDT
Twitter: #icann51 | #remotehub
August 29, 2014
To my ISOC Colleagues,
I am writing as I fly to Istanbul with much anticipation for a week of important work. I understand that more than 3000 people have registered for the IGF. This past year, as a diverse Internet community, we have given much thought and energy on how to best “govern” ourselves. In Istanbul, we will have an opportunity, with our colleagues from around the world, to, once again, demonstrate the power of collective collaboration and action. As we know, collaboration is essential to ensure the future of the Internet. If decisions related to the Internet and its future are not in the hands of the many, they will only be in the hands of the few. I will post some further thoughts this weekend on IGF before the panels, workshops, lunches and dinners begin.
I wanted, however, to take a few moments before we land to report back on my observations of the WEF event yesterday.
I applaud the leadership of the World Economic Forum for highlighting and recognizing the enormity of the effect of the Internet on the global economy and the benefits and challenges inherent in its adoption in much of the world. It is, of course, entirely legitimate that it seeks to understand and participate in the debate on internet governance. When given the opportunity to comment during the morning session, I urged that its thinking about governance include as its central tenet the continuing investment, innovation and access to the Internet to and for everyone, particularly for those who do not yet have access and for the “unborn innovator”.
Many of us in and around the Internet Society–on Staff, on the Board, in our organizational members and Chapters, in the IETF and the IAB have been deeply committed and involved in working with our extended communities to address the threats to the Internet as well as to develop, manage and deploy the ever-evolving technology of the Internet throughout the world. We revel in inventing the future. Together, we have adopted a bottom up culture and method of decision making around numerous, local and global, technical, social and legal issues that arise in the decentralized, distributed ecosystem which is the Internet.
We were delighted with the cooperative spirit in Brazil at Net Mundial as well as our collective ability to reach rough consensus on the principles that should govern our governing. Olaf Kolkman, ISOC’s new CITO, enthusiastically said, lets tack these principles on the door and, for all who are ready to embrace them, come on in.
Many of us are busy implementing features of the NetMundial roadmap. ISOC has developed toolkits for spam and IXPs; our regional offices hold INETs throughout the world to demonstrate and teach technical skills; our Leadership program creates and administers online courses and sponsors leadership seminars, ambassadorships and internships; we take active leadership in policy development for governance issues; and our staff has worked tirelessly to introduce best practices workshops to the IGF, while our Chapters have actively supported Regional and National IGFs around the Globe. The Internet Society is a party to the NTIA Transition Coordinating Committee. Our representatives and Chapters are intimately involved in the ICANN accountability dialogue. We believe that we are well along the Internet Governance journey.
We welcome any and all people and groups of good will to work with us and the broader Internet Community in a multi-stakeholder effort to deepen and broaden this effort. We certainly invite WEF to get acquainted with our collective work that is serious and ongoing. I heard some intention to do that.
I was disturbed, however, as others have expressed, with the opaque way the meeting came about; about what seemed to be established agendas; talk of some new single entity and top down models that purport to represent organic community processes that could be hobbled by definitions and artificial role expectations.
I frankly do not know enough to know whether my concerns are justified. I look forward to hearing more from WEF, and perhaps, from the ICANN leadership, this week, about the initiative. I hope, too, that the folks at WEF who are coming to the IGF soak up the energy, creativity, work and sweat of the community that will gather this week. A constructive dialogue and the collaborative spirit of NetMundial may just cause us to join forces for the good of the Internet and the good of the world.
So, on to Istanbul. We have work to do.
August 18, 2014
Internet Society New York Chapter (ISOC-NY) member Avri Doria is the recipient of the inaugural
ICANN Multistakeholder Ethos Award, which she received in June 2014 at ICANN50 in London. Video of the award ceremony is below.
View on YouTube: http://youtu.be/c0Mf0GIqg84
Transcribe on AMARA: http://www.amara.org/en/videos/1jJEQWSXLhlB/
May 21, 2014
On Wednesday May 21 2014 at 3pm the Internet Society’s New York Chapter (ISOC-NY) and RECLAIM.CC, as part of Internet Week NY, will present Libtech NYC 2014 – a half-day conference to “envision, learn, share and build robust, decentralized networks through participatory systems.” There is a voluntary fee of $12+ to attend in person, and a free webcast via the Internet Society Chapters YouTube channel.
What: Libtech NYC 2014
Where: Courant Institute, Warren Weaver Hall, 251 Mercer St, NYC
When: Wednesday May 21 2014 3pm-9pm EDT | 1900-0100 UTC
• Save the internet: net neutrality protestors camp out against FCC ruling
• Create the people’s intelligence agency with Robert David Steele, author of Open Source Everything manifesto
• Learn from veteran attorney Stanley Cohen on criminalization of dissent
• Explore how a new Internet Bill Of Rights might function
• Reclaim: where communities of practice connect around projects
• Build and transform social capital, diy liberation technology + you
Groucho Fractal and Scott Beibin; Beyond The Grid with video artist Paul Garrin with Nicole Brydson of Misfit Media; Veteran attorney activist Stanley Cohen; Cyber-reformer and intelligence professional Robert David Steele on intelligence in the public interest; Nate Heasley with goodnik; Sandra Ordonez with Open Internet Tools Projects (openitp); Nick Farr – hackers on planet earth; Reactor (Josephine Dorado and Jeremy Pesner); David Solomonoff with the Internet Society of New York; Bruce Lincoln & Clayton Banks envisioning the technological future with Silicon Harlem; Thomas Lowenhaupt of connectingnyc.org; Ted Schulman and the open source imperative; Ted Hall and seedball; culture change campaigns with Fred Sullivan and the man-up campaign and communities of practice including arc 38 and Brooklyn the Borough.
April 22, 2014
[From Internet Society CEO/President Kathy Brown]
This week, the world’s eyes will turn to Brazil, host of the NETmundial Global Multistakeholder Meeting on the Future of Internet Governance. This meeting is an important opportunity to continue discussions on key Internet governance principles and a roadmap for future action.
We are in the midst of a very busy global policy dialogue on Internet governance and, as the discussion grows, it is more important than ever to be clear about what is meant by the phrase “Internet governance.” This is a discussion that has its origins in the 2003-2005 UN World Summit on the Information Society (WSIS) and that has, in the years since, evolved as dynamically as the Internet itself. This year is a particularly busy one for those of us who are focused on these issues – an inflection point that could shape the future of the Internet and its governance.
As we look forward to NETmundial, it is important that we consider the broader context: Internet governance is not about the role of any one stakeholder group (governments, technical organizations, private enterprise, civil society, etc.) but is rather about how we all work together to tackle the challenges that emerge in the context of the Internet. Whether the issues are related to ensuring the robustness and resiliency of Internet security and privacy, advancing the deployment and development of core Internet infrastructure, or any number of other concrete challenges, we need to come together to address issues in ways that do not undermine the fundamental design principles of the Internet. Too much focus on static definitions of the roles and responsibilities of any one stakeholder group could distract our attention from achieving the overall balance that is needed for any successful governance system.
April 2, 2014
Internet Society President and CEO Kathy Brown issued the following statement on March 31 2014.:
We are deeply concerned with recent reports that the Turkish government is mandating curtailed access to key social media sites for millions of users across Turkey. Recent actions to implement the Turkish government’s requirement include the redirection of network routes so that Turkish citizens are not getting the correct information from the Domain Name System (DNS). They are instead being redirected to other web sites controlled by Turkish service providers. In addition to undermining core technical functions of the Internet’s architecture, such actions also threaten users’ fundamental human right to seek, receive, and impart information and ideas across frontiers.
Interfering with a country’s routing of Internet traffic not only harms citizens’ ability to communicate and innovate as part of the global Internet platform; it can also lead to a fragmentation of the network at the regional and global levels. Ultimately, the Turkish people and nation are the ones that will suffer, as their voices will be lost across the net.
The Internet Society believes that the Internet is a global medium that fuels economic and social development, empowers users with limitless access to knowledge, and supports aspirations for freedom. Bob Hinden, Chair of the Internet Society Board of Trustees, added, “We strongly urge the Turkish Government to stop requiring the blocking of access to social media sites and to allow full Internet access to all Turkish citizens immediately. We believe that the opportunity to participate in the global information society should never be taken away from individuals.”The Internet Society hopes that nations around the world will come to understand that blocking citizens’ access to the tools of online communication only serves to fuel discord and is not the way to address the underlying concerns of their citizens. Such measures can only undermine citizens’ trust in their government’s ability to provide an enabling Internet environment for economic and social progress.
March 15, 2014
On Friday March 14 2014 the U.S. National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) announced that it had invited ICANN to make a multistakeholder-derived proposal to take over responsibility for the “IANA functions“, i.e. management of the Internet’s root zone, when the current contract ends in 2015. In response Internet technical organizations, including the Internet Society, issued the following statement:
Internet Technical Leaders Welcome IANA Globalization Progress
The leaders of the Internet technical organizations responsible for coordination of the Internet infrastructure (IETF, IAB, RIRs, ccTLD ROs, ICANN, ISOC, and W3C), welcome the US Government’s announcement of the suggested changes related to the IANA functions contract.
The roles on policy development processes of the Internet technical organizations and ICANN’s role as administrator of the IANA functions, remain unchanged
The transition of the US Government stewardship has been envisaged since the early days of IANA functions contract. This transition is now feasible due to the maturity of the Internet technical organizations involved in performing their respective roles related to the IANA functions, and ICANN will facilitate a global, multi-stakeholder process to plan for the transition.
The strength and stability of the IANA functions within the above organizations (which make up the Internet technical community) are critical to the operation of the Internet. The processes around the IANA functions have always been carefully specified in the communities that our organizations represent. The IANA functions are faithfully administered by ICANN. We are committed to continuing our proven, community-driven processes as we engage in this transition. Our communities are already considering proposals to progress the transition.
Our organizations are committed to open and transparent multi-stakeholder processes. We are also committed to further strengthening our processes and agreements related to the IANA functions, and to building on the existing organizations and their roles. The Internet technical community is strong enough to continue its role, while assuming the stewardship function as it transitions from the US Government.
January 15, 2014
Warns that Internet fragmentation is ‘very real risk’
[Washington, D.C. and Geneva, Switzerland – 15 January 2014] – U.S. President Obama is expected to make a speech on 17 January 2014 regarding the recommendations in the report from the President’s Review Group on Intelligence and Communications Technologies: Liberty and Security in a Changing World. The world will be watching for substantive action from the President to effect immediate and meaningful changes to U.S. government surveillance practices that have shaken the confidence and trust of Internet users worldwide. The President has a unique opportunity to open a global dialogue to find ways to protect, as the Advisory Board’s report puts it, two different forms of security: national security and personal privacy.
January 14, 2014
Next Page »
The Internet Society released the following statement from Bob Hinden, Chair of the Internet Society Board of Trustees:
“Today, the Washington, D.C. Court of Appeals in the United States issued a major decision with regards to the Federal Communication Commission’s Open Internet rules.
The Internet Society has consistently argued that the core principles of transparency, freedom of choice, and unimpeded access to content and applications should be at the heart of any policy action with respect to network neutrality.
Notwithstanding the Court’s ruling today, these principles that have allowed the Internet to grow, scale, and connect people and ideas around the world remain valid. Anything less would jeopardize the continued success and availability of the Internet as a tool for open communication and economic growth.
The Internet Society urges parties in the United States to keep a sharp focus on the need to create an environment that allows users to remain in control of their Internet experience, thus empowering them to participate in the open Internet.”