ITU Proposes More Government Control Over the Internet

The International Telecommunications Union (ITU), the telecommunications arm of the United Nations, is hosting a World Conference on International Telecommunications starting Dec 3. The agenda includes gaining a role for the ITU on Internet governance. This is in part fueled by repressive government regimes wanting more control over the internet and its users. It has drawn huge opposition from human rights and free speech advocates. Also from companies such as Google. Vint Cerf – now with Google but considered the father of the internet – has come out very strongly against it.

This is a very bad idea. One of the reasons that the internet has worked so well is that it has been designed and operated without government interference. 

Two activist groups that played a key role in the debate over the Stop Online Piracy Act, Fight for the Future and Access Now, have created a website  warning about the move and containing links to further reading and resources.



  1. David Collier-Brown

    It’s also financially advantageous to the telcos. Rick Falkvinge has been writing recently about the experience with telcos in Europe:

    OECD: Telcos Overcharging By Five Orders Of Magnitude

    Free Market Failure: Telco Profit Margin On Data Roaming Exceeds One
    Million Per Cent,

    And “Free Market Failure: Telcos Charge More For Sending A Text Next Door Than Cost Of Sending Data From Mars”, at

    … which ends with “So it is bad policymaking – no, terrible policymaking – to allow the incumbent telco industries to prevent this economic growth (and their own replacement) by giving them any kind of control of the Internet, like with the upcoming coup attempt at the ITU’s meeting in Dubai, or trusting them politically with Internet rollout.”