GOP Friction Continues on Domain Name System Plan
Posted at 1:45 p.m. on May 22, 2014
Nearly all of the Republican members of the Senate Commerce, Science and Transportation Committee are calling on panel leaders to hold a hearing on the National Telecommunications and Information Administration’s plan to transfer its role in key domain name systems to the “global multistakeholder” community.
The Republican lawmakers wrote to Chairman Jay Rockefeller, D-W.Va., ranking Republican John Thune, D-S.D., Mark Pryor, D-Ark., the chairman of the subcommittee with jurisdiction, and the subcommittee’s ranking member, Roger Wicker, R-Miss.
They wrote that the transition could have “profound consequences on the future of Internet governance and freedom.” They also noted:
Since the announcement by NTIA, the United States has sent delegations to the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) 49 conference in Singapore and to the NETmundial meeting on the future of Internet governance in Brazil. NTIA’s decision and ICANN’s future role were discussed at both conferences and we understand that countries like China and Russia pushed back against the multi-stakeholder model and toward greater control over the Internet.
They added that “it is important” for lawmakers and the public to hear from NTIA, the U.S. delegation, and other stakeholders about “how these conferences went and what the global community is proposing.”
Earlier today, the House passed its annual defense policy bill, with an amendment by Illinois Republican John Shimkus that was adopted 245-177 and would put the brakes on the NTIA’s plan until the Government Accountability Office submits a report to Congress.
The proposal has drawn concerns about actions of other governments. According to PC World, the plan has received praise from leaders of several Internet technical groups.