NRO tells US Govt ‘ICANN is no longer your domain’

23 Jun 2009

The Number Resource Organisation (NRO), which consists of five of the world’s top regional internet registries, has expressed its support in ending the collaboration between the Internet Corporation of Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) and the US Department of Commerce.

The organisation has called on the US Government to end its collaboration agreement with ICANN and to consider the NRO’s comments when deciding on how to transition the technical co-ordination and management of the Domain Name System (DNS).

The NRO exists to protect the pool of unallocated internet numbers (IP addresses and AS numbers), and serves as a co-ordinating mechanism for the five regional registries to act collectively on matters relating to the interests of regional registries across the world.

It also makes recommendations for the management of the DNS to ensure its future stability.

The DNS is currently managed by ICANN and the US Department of Commerce under an agreement set to expire on 30 September.

In recent weeks, European Information Society Commissioner Viviane Reding recommended that the US and ICANN end their partnership, allowing ICANN to become a fully independent organisation.

“Will it become a fully independent organisation, accountable to the global internet community? Europeans would expect so, and this is what we will push for. I call on the US to work together with the European Union to achieve this,” Commissioner Reding said.

The NRO said it recommends that stability, competition, bottom-up co-ordination and representation remain the guiding principles for the governance of ICANN after this agreement expires.

“The continuing development of the internet is due to the well-established principles of bottom-up industry self-regulation,” explained Adiel Akplogan, NRO chairman.

“An industry-driven, multi-stakeholder approach is more flexible than government-based processes and, as a result, is able to adapt rapidly to meet the changing needs of the internet and its users.

“We believe that the principles that have guided the management of the DNS until now will enable the growth and development of the internet in the future too, and advise that US Government involvement in ICANN is no longer necessary,” Akplogan said.

By John Kennedy