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Barack Obama And The United Nations Will Be Watching The Internet For You

Posted on December 20 2010 3:00 pm

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All Internet users beware!  An Internet free of the heavy hand of government regulation may become a thing of the past. First, we have the Obama administration seeking to place controls on the Internet.

Second, the United Nations establishment is trying to establish mechanisms for global governance of the Internet.

The Federal Communications Commission Chairman Julius Genachowski, an Obama appointee, is seeking to carry out Barack Obama’s campaign promise to regulate the Internet, starting with ‘net-neutrality’ which the FCC is expected to take up as early as tomorrow.

It was Genachowski who appointed the FCC’s Chief Diversity Officer Mark Lloyd.  Czar Lloyd, among other things, said that

blind references to freedom of speech or the press serve as a distraction from the critical examination of other communications policies

Net neutrality is the attempt, in the name of open and egalitarian access, to regulate the terms under which Internet service providers can provide and price their services. Diversity is a primary policy objective. It will inevitably lead to regulation of Internet content. The fact that a recent court decision has cast serious doubt on whether the FCC has the authority to pursue this policy has not deterred Genachowski from moving forward.

In the words of Republican FCC  Commissioner Robert McDowell:

the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) will mark the winter solstice by taking an unprecedented step to expand government’s reach into the Internet by attempting to regulate its inner workings. In doing so, the agency will circumvent Congress and disregard a recent court ruling… On this winter solstice, we will witness jaw-dropping interventionist chutzpah as the FCC bypasses branches of our government in the dogged pursuit of needless and harmful regulation. The darkest day of the year may end up marking the beginning of a long winter’s night for Internet freedom

The United Nations is also aiming to run the Internet for you.  With the backing of governments around the world who don’t mind free-riding on American investment and know-how in the Internet while seeking as many ways as possible to usurp control over its governance, the UN establishment has been trying for years to move control of the Internet’s day-to-day management to some sort of global governance forum.

In the latest such incidence, at a meeting in New York last week, representatives from Brazil called for an international body that would attempt to create global standards for policing the Internet. India, South Africa, China and Saudi Arabia also backed the idea. The justification this time was to deal with challenges such as WikiLeaks. But it’s all about replacing the openness of the Internet, operating in a free market environment, with intrusive international regulation.

There is already a United Nations Internet body in existence known as the Internet Governance Forum, whose five year mandate is about to expire.  But the advocates of global governance are not satisfied with simply extending its term, because the Internet Governance Forum only advises on Internet policy issues and has no decision-making authority of its own.

Supporters of global governance of the Internet also want to go way beyond cooperating on purely technical issues such as the coordination of Internet addresses across the world to enable users to reach each other on the Internet – a function performed currently by the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN). This not-for-profit public benefit corporation doesn’t have any say concerning content on the Internet. Nor does it deal with public policies regarding access to the Internet. Internet content and access are left to the marketplace today.

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