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Sunday, 29 November, 2020

Who Should Control the Internet?

Date: 01 November, 2005

By: Chief

Imageaybe I should be a little more clear. Something along the lines of who should control the 13 root servers — that control the Internet. Secondly, who should control the assignment of Internet domain names and IP address — that the root servers use and automatically update — that control the Internet.

As it currently stands the U.S. Department of Commerce (DOC) holds the final say. Though when the Internet became public, for lack of a better word, the DOC created a private company, the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) to manage it.

And the European Union (EU), along with some other countries do not like that one little bit.

Indeed quite recently in Geneva, Switzerland, representatives from the United Kingdom, the European Union, China, some African States and the U.S. met for over a week during the third and final preparatory meeting before the upcoming (this same month I believe) World Summit on the Information Society. One of the 'really big deals' was over who would control the Internet. The U.S. representatives said and maintains that only the U.S. shall control the Internet. The European Union representatives, along with some other countries responded by saying — 'Hey U.S., y'all just watch this'. The result was not a pretty sight.

When the smoke cleared and the dust had settled, the U.S. had refused to budge. So:

"[T]he EU took a bold step and proposed two stark changes: a new forum that would decide public policy, and a 'cooperation model' comprising governments that would be in overall charge" (quoting the Guardian UK paper).

As we, the U.S. decided not to give in to the demands of the EU and other countries, the EU and cohorts have taken it upon themselves in an attempt to wrest control of the Internet from us. From the United States — the sole, as in singular, country that developed the whole bloody thing in the first place.

I think a little bit of Internet history is important if for no other reason than to clear the air about who developed what we now call the Internet, why what we now call the Internet was developed, who paid the bill and who did all the bloody work.

What we call the Internet was initially developed by U.S. private companies under contract to the U.S. government to provide the U.S. military with a fully reliable fall back or a redundant communication system in the event of nuclear war. The addressing system, the trunking system and the building of the system was funded entirely by U.S. taxpayers. No other country had anything to do with it. Period.

Due to federal budget cuts in the 1970's the system was never fully completed or utilized and basically sat idle for quite sometime, as in years. Finally the U.S. Department of Defense (DOD) Advanced Research and Projects Agency (ARPA) took it onboard as a cheaper yet faster method to enable scientists to share data on related projects (the modem was just coming into play, by the way). Hence the system really started to grow. Funded, once again, solely by U.S. taxpayers. Other countries need not apply. The U.S. Army was put in charge of expanding and maintaining the system. The system became global in its reach.

In the 1980's the system expanded so rapidly with ARPA use and the U.S. military use that the system was split into two distinct networks — the ARPA Net and the Defense Data Net (DDN).

Now, I believe somewhere between 1989 - 1991 the U.S. Army turned control of the system over to the National Science Foundation. The original Internic, (the network information center) was located in Menlo Park, California. Again, only U.S. dollars were spent. Only U.S. dollars were being spent on equipment, personnel, upgrades and maintenance of a global communication system. It became known as the Internet.

Finally sometime around 1995, I think, the U.S. Department of Commerce took control over the Internet from the National Science Foundation. The DOC has maintained control ever since.

Let me ask you this: did any individual European country, the European Union, the United Kingdom, China or any other forsaken country have anything whatsoever to do with the development, engineering, building, testing, maintaining, expanding or funding what we now call the Internet? No. Not only no — but hell no.

Yet those same countries who contributed nothing, as is the norm, want to control what we, as in the United States, developed, built and paid for.

Quoting the Guardian:

"But the refusal [of the U.S.] to budge only strengthened opposition, and now the world's governments are expected to agree a deal to award themselves ultimate control. It will be officially raised at a UN summit of world leaders next month and, faced with international consensus, there is little the US government can do but acquiesce."

Bet me there is little the U.S. can do. For one thing, if we wanted to get real nasty about it we, as in the DOC, could direct the companies managing the 13 root servers to delete or block any domain that is not physically located within the United States. That would shut down most of the frigging world from using what we built. The DOC could also block any domain assigned to the scurvy countries that are participating in these shenanigans.

Another thing we could do is offer for lease or possibly even sell a 40 percent share of the root servers to those other God forsaken countries. We maintain 60 percent and, as usual, the final say. Minimum bid would start at 5 trillion dollars, cash only.

Those are just two tricks we could play. I am sure there are many others.

This whole 'other countries' gig stinks. They are attempting to steal the Internet from us. We created the blasted thing. We, out of the kindness of our little black hearts, have allowed other countries to use our creation. Now these same countries or should I say cretins are attempting to take what is ours.

Screw 'em and feed 'em fishheads says I.

The European Union wants to take our creation. Isn't this the same bunch of countries who cannot even ratify their own proposed Constitution? Yeah, it sure is. France and Britain cannot even agree on what constitutes good food (The Brits cannot cook at all and French cooking is simply an exotic way to create garbage). But they want to control the Internet root servers. Germany cannot even elect their own government without screwing that up completely (the recent and ongoing election fiasco is a recent example). But they too want to control the Internet root servers. China, the largest communist country in the world (that's left), restricts what can be viewed, transmitted and received via the Internet, wants to be part of the group that controls the Internet root servers. What utter stupidity.

Can you imagine collective governance of the Internet? Those idiots in Europe cannot even tie their own shoes without having 14 meetings in 25 different languages at 10 different locations. And then all they do is agree to disagree. The whole concept is ludicrous. Indeed, Mr. David Hendon, Department for Trade and Industry's director of business relations and was representing the UK government and European Union during the Geneva talks, (he is also the dirtbag who is trying to accomplish this act of theft) said:

" 'The really important point is that the EU doesn't want to see this change as bringing new government control over the Internet. Governments will only be involved where they need to be and only on issues setting the top-level framework' " (Quoting the Guardian).

Allow me to translate his bureaucratic hogwash into English. "[T]op-level framework" means who could get a domain name. Where the money would go and to what country. What technical standards would be used on and for the Internet (keep in mind the part about Europeans not being able to tie their own shoes ... yadda, yadda). And the bit about "governments will only be involved where they need to be." Ha! What a laugh. That means everywhere. What government that you have ever seen keeps its nose out of other peoples' business? None that I can think of.

Finally the part about not wanting to "see this change as bringing new government control over the Internet" is a pure load of crap. That is the whole reason for the possible theft of our Internet. Government control. Remember — he who controls the flow of information controls the thoughts and actions of the people.

Europe and the rest of the world as well should be thanking the United States for allowing the world access to our creation for the world's benefit instead of attempting grand theft. However, I suspect that is not be.

Should the fools actually attempt this hijacking of our Internet I say the U.S. should just leave the utterly useless United Nations and, further, give the worthless sons-a-bitches one year to get the out of our country (and take the building with 'em). Additionally, the U.S. should pull, as in right now, every Soldier, Sailor, Airman and Marine out of Europe — permanently. Screw NATO. Any treaties we have with any European country or any country which is collaborating with the EU on this rancid attempt of theft we simply void. It is time for us to leave Europe, for good.

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