WASHINGTON, DC – The Congressional Internet Caucus co-chairs predicted “dire consequences” should “unaccountable international entities” usurp control of Internet functions in a letter to Ambassador Terry Kramer in advance of the World Conference on International Communications (WCIT). Over the weekend, more details leaked about the impending WCIT power struggles that Ambassador Gross faces as the U.S. delegation heads to Dubai. The co-chairs urged Ambassador Kramer to take a strong stand, noting “our cherished notions of free speech would be chilled on the global platform leading to a balkanization of the Internet where censorship could become the new norm.”
In the letter, all four Congressional Internet Caucus co-chairs — Senator Patrick Leahy, Senator John Thune, Representative Bob Goodlatte and Representative Anna G. Eshoo — stated “Internet governance issues can best be addressed through [current] multi-stakeholder mechanisms” rather than “unaccountable intergovernmental agencies.” Leading U.S. stakeholders alerted Congress to the impending ITU takeover in the spring at a Congressional briefing hosted by the Congressional Internet Caucus Advisory Committee.
The strong statement from the bicameral, bipartisan caucus bolsters the U.S. delegation’s mission to ensure that Internet governance functions remain with “the private, nonprofit, and governmental organizations that have managed the Internet effectively for many years and empowered it to flourish.”
Link to letter: http://bit.ly/ROU4W4
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