John Gilmore: Open Letter to Vint Cerf, ICANN Chair. “ICANN is going down, one way or another. Either it will go down like East Germany, with a peaceful transition to governance responsive to the public will, or it will go down like Japan, with big bombs dropped on it. ICANN has lost all semblance of credibility and merely seeks to entrench its unaccountable power.”

John Gillmore: It’s time for ICANN to go.

They hold “open public meetings” where the public is free to shovel its comments into a dumpster. But then they ignore the comments and do what they want in closed-door meetings. […]

Somebody at SAIC noticed that a tiny company had gotten the temporary monopoly to run the domain name system, and was being paid a few million dollars by the government, over a few years, to do all the work. In March 1995, SAIC acquired this company (Network Solutions) for $3 million, from its founder, who had won the bid because his five- or 10-person company was “minority owned.”

Within the next six months, somebody inside the U.S. government suddenly decided that Network Solutions (the new SAIC subsidiary) could charge every domain name holder $50 per year, extracting hundreds of millions of dollars from Internet users. That policy was instituted despite the best efforts of the Internet community to stop it. That’s one string that was pulled. Who exactly pulled it? Sounds like a job for an investigative reporter.


If VeriSign gets its authority from ICANN and ICANN gets its authority from the Department of Commerce, where does the Department of Commerce get its authority?

posted July 02, 2002 02:24 PM (Technology) #


TCPA and Palladium in Plain Terms
Web Roundup
Introducing Memesh
Recursive Blogging
Putting an End to ICANN
Today’s Hack: html2text Converter
Debunking the Debunkers
Reevaluating Copyright
Freedom, Independence
today’s featured superhero: Brad Templeton

Aaron Swartz (