US Loses Grip On Internet

It’s taken a while, but finally the United State’s firm grip on the Internet has been diminished with the US Department of Commerce expected to sign an agreement that will give US-based governing body ICANN, who control the net, more independence.

This has been a long time coming with many countries, especially Europe and the former super powers China and Russia, wanting more control over the internet.

While ICANN will still have control over domain names, Americans will no longer be in full control of Internet oversight , which won’t make conservative America too happy – after all they are the world’s police and don’t trust outsiders to police the internet in a manner to their liking.

However, it will endear the Americans to a world that is thawing towards them after such strained relationships during the Bush years in the White House.

But is it a good idea to let the rest of the world make these decisions? Like a lot of these things, I’m a bit of a fence sitter because I can see both sides of the argument. For a start, there is the train of thought, if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it. And when you look at it, Americans have been doing an OK job of it – after all they did invent it. Unlike Australia, there is little to no chance of a filtering system being integrated (although some have tried), and they are fierce in their defense of independence.

On the other side of the coin, shouldn’t people be allowed to be the harbingers of their own destiny, and not allow web content pertinent to their country be controlled by a foreign government. As Chinese and Burmese citizens have found out, while the Internet is a portal to freedom, it can also be a gateway for Big Brother.

Care is needed by all, and consideration of others goes without saying.