Previous Politech message:
ICANN's most useful contributions are the assignment of IP addresses,
DNS domains, and other numbers as specified by the IETF (Internet
Engineering Task Force) in its RFCs. When Jon Postel ran it from his
office, everything was fine. Now ICANN is an unregulated bureaucracy
focusing on increasing its status and revenues by approving more
expensive top level domains and charging more for existing domains.
Because they share so many goals, a hostile takeover of ICANN by the
U.N. is a perfect move, and sure to doom all of us to even worse
governance. (I won't bother to go through the complete failure of ICANN
to stick with its promised democratic reforms, or its inability to
respect its own elected officials).
The IETF can put a stop to much of this through technical means. For
example, develop an alternate domain resolution algorithm (much like
Google's "I'm feeling lucky"), so that when you type in Mary, the
browser may go to Mary Kay, the Catholic Church, or your friend Mary's
home page, or when you copy links from your browser to your e-mail
program to send to your friends, the domain name is displayed however
the webmaster may want. Once domain names become invisible bits like IP
addresses, then there will be no point in fighting about them.
Also, the IETF should end concerns about IP shortages by working to
expand NAT implementations and the use of IPv6, with its effectively
infinite number of IP addresses, into the real world (perhaps IPv4 with
NAT at the client end where needed with a mostly IPv6 Internet core).
Finally, the IETF should stop giving IANA and ICANN new duties in its
RFCs. Where unique numbers must be assigned (e.g. well known TCP and
UDP ports), technical means should be used to assign those numbers (e.g.
a simple web based registration form), rather than going through IANA
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