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#1 key2thecup

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Posted 26 November 2012 - 01:43 PM

U.N. to Seek Control of the Internet

Next week the United Nations' International Telecommunications Union will meet in Dubai to figure out how to control the Internet. Representatives from 193 nations will attend the nearly two week long meeting, according to news reports.

"Next week the ITU holds a negotiating conference in Dubai, and past months have brought many leaks of proposals for a new treaty. U.S. congressional resolutions and much of the commentary, including in this column, have focused on proposals by authoritarian governments to censor the Internet. Just as objectionable are proposals that ignore how the Internet works, threatening its smooth and open operations," reports the Wall Street Journal.

"Having the Internet rewired by bureaucrats would be like handing a Stradivarius to a gorilla. The Internet is made up of 40,000 networks that interconnect among 425,000 global routes, cheaply and efficiently delivering messages and other digital content among more than two billion people around the world, with some 500,000 new users a day.

"Proposals for the new ITU treaty run to more than 200 pages. One idea is to apply the ITU's long-distance telephone rules to the Internet by creating a 'sender-party-pays' rule. International phone calls include a fee from the originating country to the local phone company at the receiving end. Under a sender-pays approach, U.S.-based websites would pay a local network for each visitor from overseas, effectively taxing firms such as Google and Facebook. The idea is technically impractical because unlike phone networks, the Internet doesn't recognize national borders. But authoritarians are pushing the tax, hoping their citizens will be cut off from U.S. websites that decide foreign visitors are too expensive to serve."

Even Google has already come out against the ITU.

"The ITU is the wrong place to make decisions about the future of the Internet," says Google. "Only governments have a voice at the ITU. This includes governments that do not support a free and open Internet. Engineers, companies, and people that build and use the web have no vote."

"The ITU is also secretive. The treaty conference and proposals are confidential," adds Google.

http://www.weeklysta...net_664018.html



The U.N.'s Internet Sneak Attack

Letting the Internet be rewired by bureaucrats would be like handing a Stradivarius to a gorilla.

Who runs the Internet? For now, the answer remains no one, or at least no government, which explains the Web's success as a new technology. But as of next week, unless the U.S. gets serious, the answer could be the United Nations.

Many of the U.N.'s 193 member states oppose the open, uncontrolled nature of the Internet. Its interconnected global networks ignore national boundaries, making it hard for governments to censor or tax. And so, to send the freewheeling digital world back to the state control of the analog era, China, Russia, Iran and Arab countries are trying to hijack a U.N. agency that has nothing to do with the Internet.

For more than a year, these countries have lobbied an agency called the International Telecommunications Union to take over the rules and workings of the Internet. Created in 1865 as the International Telegraph Union, the ITU last drafted a treaty on communications in 1988, before the commercial Internet, when telecommunications meant voice telephone calls via national telephone monopolies.

Next week the ITU holds a negotiating conference in Dubai, and past months have brought many leaks of proposals for a new treaty. U.S. congressional resolutions and much of the commentary, including in this column, have focused on proposals by authoritarian governments to censor the Internet. Just as objectionable are proposals that ignore how the Internet works, threatening its smooth and open operations.

Having the Internet rewired by bureaucrats would be like handing a Stradivarius to a gorilla. The Internet is made up of 40,000 networks that interconnect among 425,000 global routes, cheaply and efficiently delivering messages and other digital content among more than two billion people around the world, with some 500,000 new users a day.

Many of the engineers and developers who built and operate these networks belong to virtual committees and task forces coordinated by an international nonprofit called the Internet Society. The society is home to the Internet Engineering Task Force (the main provider of global technical standards) and other volunteer groups such as the Internet Architecture Board and the Internet Research Task Force. Another key nongovernmental group is Icann, which assigns Internet addresses and domain names.

The self-regulating Internet means no one has to ask for permission to launch a website, and no government can tell network operators how to do their jobs. The arrangement has made the Internet a rare place of permissionless innovation. As former Federal Communications Commission Chairman William Kennard recently pointed out, 90% of cooperative "peering" agreements among networks are "made on a handshake," adjusting informally as needs change.

Proposals for the new ITU treaty run to more than 200 pages. One idea is to apply the ITU's long-distance telephone rules to the Internet by creating a "sender-party-pays" rule. International phone calls include a fee from the originating country to the local phone company at the receiving end. Under a sender-pays approach, U.S.-based websites would pay a local network for each visitor from overseas, effectively taxing firms such as Google and Facebook. The idea is technically impractical because unlike phone networks, the Internet doesn't recognize national borders. But authoritarians are pushing the tax, hoping their citizens will be cut off from U.S. websites that decide foreign visitors are too expensive to serve.

Regimes such as Russia and Iran also want an ITU rule letting them monitor Internet traffic routed through or to their countries, allowing them to eavesdrop or block access.

"The Internet is highly complex and highly technical," Sally Wentworth of the Internet Society told me recently, "yet governments are the only ones making decisions at the ITU, putting the Internet at their mercy." She says the developers and engineers who actually run the Internet find it "mind boggling" that governments would claim control. As the Internet Society warns, "Technology moves faster than any treaty process ever can."

Google has started an online petition for a "free and open Internet" saying: "Governments alone, working behind closed doors, should not direct its future." The State Department's top delegate to the Dubai conference, Terry Kramer, has pledged that the U.S. won't let the ITU expand its authority to the Internet. But he hedged his warning in a recent presentation in Washington: "We don't want to come across like we're preaching to others."

To the contrary, the top job for the U.S. delegation at the ITU conference is to preach the virtues of the open Internet as forcefully as possible. Billions of online users are counting on America to make sure that their Internet is never handed over to authoritarian governments or to the U.N.

http://online.wsj.co...2821852508.html


Edited by key2thecup, 26 November 2012 - 01:44 PM.

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#2 goalie13

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Posted 26 November 2012 - 01:51 PM

In related news, the UN has also struck up a committee to look into herding cats.
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#3 theminister

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Posted 26 November 2012 - 01:54 PM

This could be the single most important piece of international legislation since the Treaty on Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons.

Except, instead of being good, it would be catastrophically awful.
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#4 Where's Wellwood

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Posted 26 November 2012 - 01:55 PM

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#5 Lychees

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Posted 26 November 2012 - 02:04 PM

Control the internet?

Is that even feasible?
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#6 Dancin'Droid

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Posted 26 November 2012 - 02:11 PM

If UN started taxing google, wouldn't we need to pay for it as google would need to pay taxes for people who don't live in the states and use google?
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#7 AbbyNucksFan

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Posted 26 November 2012 - 02:18 PM

brb inventing Internet V2.0
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#8 DeNiro

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Posted 26 November 2012 - 02:40 PM

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You can have my internet when you pry it from my cold dead fingers.
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#9 D-Money

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Posted 26 November 2012 - 02:49 PM

Governments try to control everything. You really thought they'd just leave the virtual world be?

As for the United Nations, I expect it to soon be taking a larger stake in world affairs. As the US financial status continues to flounder, along with distaste for their presence, they will be more likely to try to exert their influence through the UN.
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#10 SkeeterHansen

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Posted 26 November 2012 - 02:55 PM

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#11 J.R.

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Posted 26 November 2012 - 02:55 PM

Where there is power, money and knowledge there will always be those seeking to control and profit from it.

It's up to us to stop them.
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#12 DeNiro

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Posted 26 November 2012 - 03:01 PM

Where there is power, money and knowledge there will always be those seeking to control and profit from it.

It's up to us to stop them.


It's no different than the catholic churches throughout history that concealed knowledge in order to keep people subservient.

If history has taught us anything, it's that no one person or group of people should ever have this much power.
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#13 theminister

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Posted 26 November 2012 - 03:04 PM

It's no different than the catholic churches throughout history that concealed knowledge in order to keep people subservient.

If history has taught us anything, it's that no one person or group of people should ever have this much power.

Dude, I'm sure they still do. Can you imagine what is actually in the Vatican vaults? It probably makes Indiana Jones look quaint.
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#14 Snake Doctor

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Posted 26 November 2012 - 03:07 PM

Where there is power, money and knowledge there will always be those seeking to control and profit from it.

It's up to us to stop them.


Agreed
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#15 DeNiro

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Posted 26 November 2012 - 03:19 PM

Dude, I'm sure they still do. Can you imagine what is actually in the Vatican vaults? It probably makes Indiana Jones look quaint.


Well, it's harder for them to conceal knowledge now in today's day and age.

But you're right, they probably have a giant closet full of skeletons (and tainted fortunes), that they keep hidden.

Edited by DeNiro, 26 November 2012 - 03:20 PM.

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#16 Hobble

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Posted 26 November 2012 - 03:39 PM

We'll make our own Internet with hookers and blackjack!

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#17 Common sense

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Posted 26 November 2012 - 04:00 PM

How exactly is the UN involved in a system that they never created, invented, or monitored in the first place?
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#18 woot

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Posted 26 November 2012 - 04:27 PM

This was inevitable. The Internet can't be the Wild West forever.
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#19 pibroch

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Posted 26 November 2012 - 05:27 PM

Won't all the hackers just mess up the U.N. now? It seems kinda like they just put a rope around their own neck.
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#20 SkeeterHansen

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Posted 26 November 2012 - 05:37 PM

How exactly is the UN involved in a system that they never created, invented, or monitored in the first place?


Because it's the UN. They are the supreme rulers of the UNIVERSE.
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#21 surtur

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Posted 26 November 2012 - 06:05 PM

just away for them to get money from the people who will be able to pay the higher cost of using the internet , a way to censor the information available and who and how it is accessed, and to make the use of the internet an elite status, pricing out the common folk so only the privileged few can access the wealth of information.
next they will add a travelers tax so if i fly from Canada to Egypt i have to pay a communication tax to be able to share any knowledge or speak to anyone because i came from a different country.
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#22 Ghostsof1915

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Posted 26 November 2012 - 06:20 PM

Because it's the UN. They are the supreme rulers of the UNIVERSE.


Yeah...but they can't force gun control on the US. So how powerful are they?
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#23 surtur

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Posted 26 November 2012 - 06:41 PM

Yeah...but they can't force gun control on the US. So how powerful are they?

The fact that they can even discuss this as a possibility shows how powerful they are.
they are trying to limit our ability to communicate to the masses in a unscripted, uncontrolled way.
the major news networks are already controlled and filtered when needed.
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#24 vancanfan

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Posted 26 November 2012 - 06:46 PM

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lol

Edited by vancanfan, 26 November 2012 - 06:51 PM.

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#25 Argon

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Posted 26 November 2012 - 07:02 PM

they won't be able to control the internet. Everything hinges on nude women. Once they propose to do something that makes free porn cease to be, there will be an uprising like no other
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#26 NightHawkSniper

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Posted 26 November 2012 - 07:10 PM

The fact that they can even discuss this as a possibility shows how powerful they are.
they are trying to limit our ability to communicate to the masses in a unscripted, uncontrolled way.
the major news networks are already controlled and filtered when needed.


There's a difference though, it's all talk.
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#27 Lancaster

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Posted 26 November 2012 - 07:11 PM

The UN stopped being relevant ever since a large majority of the countries are dictatorships, have censorship and abuses human rights.
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#28 Armada

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Posted 26 November 2012 - 07:18 PM

The UN's just mad cause no one ever listens to their angry letters.


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#29 Hobble

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Posted 26 November 2012 - 07:34 PM

they won't be able to control the internet. Everything hinges on nude women. Once they propose to do something that makes free porn cease to be, there will be an uprising like no other


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#30 surtur

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Posted 26 November 2012 - 07:38 PM

they won't be able to control the internet. Everything hinges on nude women. Once they propose to do something that makes free porn cease to be, there will be an uprising like no other

yeah the lotion and tissue industries gonna be mad....
but good point take away the free boobs and watch out for chaos ..
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