From: "J. Austin Hughey" <josh@ionexinteractive.com>
To: <DNSTransition@ntia.doc.gov>
Date: Mon, Jul 3, 2006 10:56 AM
Subject: Comments on ICANN
To Whom It May Concern,

As an American entrepreneur and a web developer, I am deeply concerned about the future of the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN).

I strongly believe that the United States should retain oversight and control over ICANN, however I agree that other countries of the world, and their governments, should also have a say in how things are ³done². The reasoning behind this is first, that allowing the UN or another country to take over control of the Internet would have dire consequences for the US, especially in the event of geopolitical conflict. Additionally, retaining sole control over ICANN could lead to a greater separation between the US internet and that of other countries, making it more difficult (if not impossible, in some cases) to obtain news from international sources, which is extremely important as an element of maintaining freedom.

So, how do we keep ICANN in American hands while allowing governments from other nations to have a say?

First, resolve that ICANN will remain the ³property² of the United States - it¹s ours now, and I see no reason it should be given to the UN or any other agency. Secondly, form a new department within the NTIA that is essentially a miniature UN - just without the scandals and mass dysfunction. Finally, invite every country from the United Nations who has at least 10% of its citizens with internet access in their homes to send a representative (only one) to this department who will vote on all issues pertaining to ICANN, as well as draft legislation to be voted on. The United States will be responsible for carrying out the ³orders² of this department. The monetary resources required to carry out each resolution will be decided upon by obtaining estimates from US government contractors for each need, and the department will vote on who will pay for the proposed changes; however, the standing rule will be that no one country may pay for any more than 50% of said changes. This prevents the international community from forcing the US to carry out their wishes at the expense of our taxpayers. It also ensures that at least two countries must be willing to pay for the implementation of a new resolution.

This structure provides geopolitical stability in that, while the United States gets only one vote on anything, should a serious geopolitical conflict break out - or worse, war - we retain final control over the ICANN, which has its obvious advantages. Additionally, this will be a boon for the US technology sector, and associated government contractors, ensuring that changes to ICANN that need to be performed by the private sector are done by US companies - not that of another country.

In any case, should the ICANN stay in American hands, as a fair-minded person I insist that any new laws, such as net neutrality (should large corporate interests prevail over the personal freedoms of citizens), will be applicable to NO ONE except governments who agree to these rules. This way, other nations who don¹t agree with our net neutrality laws, or any of our other content related laws, are given the flexibility to allow their citizens to play by their rules, not ours (applying to content on servers located outside the US and US-held locations). The one thing the international community hates, and that America is ³famous² for (rightly or wrongly), is shoving our theologies down everyone else¹s throats. Let¹s make sure the international community knows that we won¹t do this to them any longer.

Thank you for seeking the input of the internet community on this issue. It¹s too bad the rest of our government doesn¹t use a similar method for getting feedback from citizens before passing laws!

J. Austin Hughey
President and Chief Architect
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Ionex Interactive
(512) 692-7516 office (512) 692-7517 fax
www.ionexinteractive.com