IMHO, the greatest threat facing the Internet in 2009 is the people in charge.
The Internet is governed by ICANN, who are controlled somewhat by the US Government. They are asking for greater freedoms under the guise of liberty, and the opportunity to be more dynamic. http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/technology/7205609.stm
However, the great thing about governments is their rigorous checks and balances. Sometimes this is seen as stuffy and slow, and deregulation is recommended. This is how we get into situations like the banking crisis.
Now ICANN have also proposed opening the top-level domains, so that they can be registered by “anyone”. These “top-level domains” (TLDs), are like “.com”, “.uk” and so on.
Initially, this sounds freer and better. I could be simply kenneth@kufluk.
However, this is a very stupid idea.
- The rush to register domains will be like the early days of the Internet. Panic, and court cases.
- “The net body planned to offer between 200 and 800 new addresses for sale at $185,000 (£125,000) per domain with a yearly cost of $60,000.” http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/technology/7797206.stm
- Dr Twomey said: “If there is a dispute, we will try and get the parties together to work it out. But if that fails there will be an auction and the domain will go to the highest bidder.” http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/technology/7468855.stm
- “We are doing this on a cost recovery basis. We’ve already spent $10m on this,” Dr Paul Twomey, chief executive of Icann said. http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/technology/7468855.stm
Until there is an established and working world government, I would rather see ICANN managed by the US, and I’d like to see this idea kicked out. It’s good to see the US Government raising issue with this.