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What They’re Saying About The IANA Transition

  • date icon September 27, 2016
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The IANA transition enjoys strong support from national security experts, industry, and public interest groups. Here’s what they’re saying:

Internet Association CEO Michael Beckerman: Failure
To Complete The IANA Transition “Would Impede The Free Flow Of Information
Online And Free Speech Worldwide.”
of the Internet would impede the free flow of information online and free
speech worldwide, and would have political, economic, social, and cultural
costs to society.3 The risks to the multistakeholder model should a transition
not proceed are significant, and as such, the transition should be supported.
Failure to implement a successful IANA transition will serve to undermine the
multistakeholder model, potentially stripping power from a model that has
helped make the Internet the success it is today. (Michael Beckerman, “Testimony before the U.S. Senate Committee on Commerce,
Science, and & Transportation

Major Companies Like Intel, Amazon, Microsoft, HP,
Dell, And Cisco And Industry Organizations Like USCIB, Internet Association,
CCIA, and ITI Support The IANA Transition
“The Internet’s addressing system helps keep the Internet global, scalable and
interoperable. An important proposal to assure the continuing security,
stability and resiliency of this system has recently been approved by the Board
of Directors of the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN)
and delivered to the U.S. government. In March 2014, the U.S. Department of
Commerce announced a plan to transition its historical stewardship of the
Internet’s addressing system to the global Internet community. This plan
represents the final stage of the development of ICANN, as a private-sector
led, multi-stakeholder organization to coordinate Internet addresses.” (Letter, “Open Letter To
Congress From U.S. Business,” April 2016)

Major Internet Companies and Industry Organizations
Support the Transition.
“The final
proposal includes significant and concrete measures to enhance ICANN’s
accountability to its global community. We believe that this important proposal
will assure the continuing security, stability and resiliency of this system.
Furthermore, crucial safeguards are in place to protect human rights, including
the freedom of speech. We are confident that the proposal goes above and beyond
the criteria set out by the Commerce Department two years ago to protect
Americans.” (Letter, September 2016)

George W. Bush Homeland Security Secretary Michael
Chertoff And General James Cartwright, Former Vice-Chairman Of The Joint Chiefs
Of Staff, “Strongly Believe” The IANA Transition “Is The Right Thing To Do.”
“The proposal would give oversight authority to those
groups that represent the rich diversity of the Internet itself: business
leaders, Internet engineers, academics, civil society, governments, end users
and many others. This multi-stakeholder model works and the transition should
be nothing more than the final step in an 18-year process. The Obama
administration must now decide by Sept. 30 whether to go ahead with the new
proposal and complete the privatization. We strongly believe this is the right
thing to do.” (Michael Chertoff And James Cartwright, “How to keep the
Internet free and open,” Politico, 6/7/16)

Failure To Complete The IANA Transition Would “Potentially
Put The Internet, As We Know It, At Risk.”

“Opponents of the current plan to eliminate the U.S. government’s oversight
role have argued that federal supervision is needed to protect the freedom of
the Internet and that the transition to privatization is a national security
risk. But these arguments are misplaced. If Washington fails to follow through
on its longstanding commitment to privatize the DNS, it will fuel efforts by
authoritarian regimes to move Internet governance to the United Nations—and
potentially put the Internet, as we know it, at risk.” 

(Michael Chertoff And James Cartwright, “How to keep the Internet free and open,” Politico, 6/7/16)

Google General Counsel Kent Walker Calls The IANA
Transition “A Very Good Thing” That “Will Give Innovators And Users A Greater Role In Managing
The Global Internet.”
“Although this is a change
in how one technical function of the Internet is governed, it will give
innovators and users a greater role in managing the global Internet.  And that’s a very good thing.  The Internet has been built by – and has
thrived because of – the companies, civil society activists, technologists,
and selfless users around the world who recognized the Internet’s power to
transform communities and economies.  If
we want the Internet to have this life-changing impact on everyone in the
world, then we need to make sure that the right people are in a position to
drive its future growth.  This proposal
does just that.” (Kent Walker, “Preserving A Free And Open Internet,” Google Public Policy Blog, 9/26/16)

The U.S. Chamber Of Commerce “Support[s] The
Long-Planned Transition Of IANA Functions.”
U.S. Chamber appreciates the thorough analysis put forth by NTIA. We continue
to support the long-planned transition of IANA functions and the much-needed
improvements to overall ICANN accountability. The report by NTIA indicates the
proposal is on the correct path to fulfill the goals of the multistakeholder
community both from a technical and accountability standpoint. We will closely
monitor the ongoing implementation of the changes to ensure the process remains
on this path.” (Statement, “U.S. Chamber Statement on
NTIA Support of ICANN Transition Plan,” U.S. Chamber Of Commerce,

Mercatus Research Fellow Eli Dourado Calls Attempts
To Slow Down IANA Transition “A Big Mistake” With “Virtually No Benefits.”
“These slowdown maneuvers are a big mistake. Completing
the process of Internet demilitarization and privatization that began in the
1980s is long overdue. There are real costs to further delaying the transition,
primarily in the sphere of international diplomacy. And there are virtually no
benefits to delay, because on a technical level IANA is not as important as
some say and it will become even less important over time.”(Eli Dourado, “Here’s why we should go through with the
IANA transition,” Plain Text, 6/10/16)

Google’s Chief Internet Evangelist And Former ICANN
Chairman Vinton G. Cerf Backs IANA Transition.
“While the proposal should be evaluated on all its merits,
I am persuaded the terms and conditions of the proposed operating practices are
well protected against such an outcome. A great many conditions must be
satisfied before the more extraordinary powers of the sole designator can be
exercised. The headquarters of ICANN will remain in the U.S. The many entities
that cooperate with ICANN to manage core Internet identifier administration
have expressed full support for the proposal.” (Vinton
G Gerf, “The IANA Transition,” Communications of the ACM, 6/9/16)

Public Interest Groups Like Center For Democracy And
Technology, Human Rights Watch, Open Technology Institute, Access Now, and
Public Knowledge Advocate For IANA Transition.
the undersigned US and international civil society and public interest groups
support and encourage the timely transition of the Internet Assigned Numbers
Authority (IANA) functions to the multistakeholder community, as outlined in
the Internet community’s proposal submitted to National Telecommunications and
Information Administration (NTIA) on March 10th 2016.” (Statement, “Civil Society Statement of Support for IANA
Transition,” Best Bits, 5/24/16)

United States Council For International Business
Hails IANA Transition.
“The United States
Council for International Business (USCIB) is pleased that the U.S. Department
of Commerce’s National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA)
has found that the Internet Assigned Numbers Authority (IANA) Stewardship
Transition proposal meets the criteria NTIA set forth in announcing its
intention to transition the U.S. stewardship of the Internet domain name system
(DNS) technical functions to the global mulitistakeholder community.” (Statement, “USCIB Hails US Approval of Internet
Stewardship Transition Proposal,”USCIB, 6/10/16)

ACT | The App Association Applauds Progress on IANA
“‘The announcement from NTIA provided
just the impetus the community needed to round out the accountability
mechanisms inside ICANN and harden the organization against capture by
governments,’ said Jonathan Zuck, president of ACT | The App Association, who
worked as part of the cross-community working group on accountability to create
the proposal. ‘Both NTIA and the Berkman Center have endorsed a plan for ICANN
accountability, which was born of a truly multistakhoder process to build the
stronger, more independent ICANN that has always been intended. Participation
in this historic effort has been a personal highlight for me in my 18 years at
the App Association. While there’s more work to be done, this is an incredibly
important milestone. ICANN and the internet will be stronger for this effort.’”
(Statement, “App Association Applauds NTIA Approval
of ICANN Community Transition Plan, ACT | The App Association, 6/9/16)

The Internet Society President Kathryn Brown
Supports The IANA Transition.
“I believe
in the plan’s ability to serve the broad interests of Internet users around the
world, and in the operational communities’ talent to deliver on the plan’s
promise. I am heartened by the process by which the plan was developed and the
demonstrated commitment to see it through. And, I am committed to continue
supporting the efforts of everyone involved working towards an Internet of
opportunity for all.” (Kathryn Brown, “Important
next step in IANA Stewardship Transition: NTIA says proposal meets criteria,” Internet Society, 9/16/16)

Independent Watchdog Freedom House Says IANA
Transition “Brings Us Another Step Closer To Ensuring That The Internet Remains An Open
Platform Not Dominated By A Single Entity.”
“‘NTIA’s announcement brings us
another step closer to ensuring that the internet remains an open platform not
dominated by a single entity—whether it be a government, the private sector, or
any other force,’ said Sanja Kelly, director of the Freedom on the Net
project.” (Statement, “U.S. Moves to Privatize
Oversight of Internet Domain Name System,”Freedom House, 9/10/16)

NetChoice CEO Steve DelBianco Calls The IANA
Transition A “Significant Improvement” In ICANN Accountability.
“The community’s proposal meets NTIA requirements and
reduces governments’ ability to override community consensus with its advice to
ICANN’s board. While we have nearly completed ICANN Bylaws to implement the
proposal, a few implementation tasks need to be finished in the months ahead.
This transition will for the first time make ICANN accountable to the
technologists, businesses, civil society, and users who depend upon the
Internet to drive economic growth and social evolution around the world. This
is a significant improvement on the ICANN accountability we have today.” (Steve DelBianco, “Testimony before the U.S. Senate Committee on Commerce,
Science, and & Transportation

Chair Of The Internet Architecture Board, Andrew
Sullivan, Says “The Internet Has Been Waiting A Long Time” For The IANA
“The proposal is a
practical way to allow the government to step out of a function it does not
need to perform, and ensure that IANAcontinues with business as usual. A
limited IANA works for the Internet now, and will continue to do so essentially
unchanged in the future. While there are some inevitable changes proposed to
enable the transition, they are all based on foundations that are both already
working and in line with how the rest of the Internet already functions. The
Internet has been waiting a long time for this step to be taken. Delaying
brings no benefit and it might itself bring harm.” (Andrew Sullivan, “Testimony before the U.S. Senate Committee on Commerce,
Science, and & Transportation

Former Ambassador David A. Gross Calls The IANA
Transition “Very Good News For America.”
progress that has been made regarding these issues is the result of more than
two years of hard work by many people and organizations, demonstrating that
even complex and difficult Internetrelated issues can be resolved successfully
through bottom-up, community-driven processes. Since the United States has long
been the champion of the multistakeholder process for resolving Internet
governance-related issues, this success is very good news for America.” (David A Gross, “Testimony before the U.S. Senate Committee on Commerce,
Science, and & Transportation

Intel Global Cybersecurity And Internet Policy
Director Audrey Plonk Calls IANATransition “Critical To Preserving And
Advancing Trust In Both The Internet And The Global Technology Providers
Innovating Its Future.”
“We believe that the
prompt transition of the stewardship of the IANA functions is critical to
preserving and advancing trust in both the Internet and the global technology
providers innovating its future. US technology companies like Intel have
created tremendous economic benefits by helping to build the global digital
infrastructure, and continued trust in this digital infrastructure is critical
for the country’s economic growth.” (Audrey
Plonk, “Testimony before the U.S. Senate Committee on Commerce,
Science, and & Transportation