U.S. Capitol

U.S. now ‘totally unified’ in opposition of U.N. Internet governance

by Violet Blue, Zdnet.com  |  published on December 5, 2012

In a historical moment of unanimous agreement — an eye-opening 397-0 vote — the U.S. House of Representatives voted today to approve a resolution pushing the U.S. government to fight the United Nations in its bid to control and change the Internet at the WCIT-12 summit, currently under way in Dubai.

The unanimous vote is meant to send a signal — as a show of strength — to other countries meeting at the telecommunications summit that both the White House and its lawmakers oppose any role the U.N. might take in Internet governance or regulation.

The WCIT-12 summit is where the U.N.’s little-known arm, International Telecommunicaitons Union (ITU), is facilitating updates and changes to global telecommunications regulations that would place the Internet under the control of nation states.

This week, ITU member states are at the Dubai summit arguing over proposals from countries, most notably oppressive regimes such as Russia and China, that would impose levies on Internet traffic and adopt standards that would make it easy to track Internet users’ activities.

It would give governments more effective control over citizens’ access and use, as well as establish standards for telephone-style fee collection for Internet use.

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