Danger: ITU bureaucracy seeking to stifle Internet?

Posted on June 21, 2012  /  2 Comments

Research on explosive developments in the ICT field in recent times shows that the ITU was a marginal actor. They had to be dragged kicking and screaming to support the market liberalization processes that yielded innovation and growth. Even in the area of standardization, they could not lead from the front. Entities such as the IEEE were responsible for most of the critical innovations.

Now it appears that the ITU Secretary General, in alliance with Vladimir Putin, is trying to take over the Internet:

The problem, Gross said, is that participation will be limited to representatives of national governments, not telecoms players, and a number of proposals have been put forth that will put the internet under much more restrictive regulation than it is now.

“Proposals have been put forward that would require the ITU to decide on new technologies for the internet, to regulate backbone costs and termination charges for data traffic, roaming charges and even peering,” Gross said.

Report on comments by David Gross.


  1. In a recent coauthored article; David Gross has concluded, “Despite the broad and dramatic scope of various governmental proposals – which could affect core aspects of running an ICT, telecoms, or internet-based business – the WCIT preparatory process is not receiving sufficient attention from most businesses and others. The WCIT could lead to new regulations governing how these businesses are run and how such businesses may interact with their customers, partners, and vendors, as well as how they can innovate and provide new and improved services. Moreover, because of the implicit attacks on established mechanisms of internet governance, the WCIT has the potential to destabilise and politicise standardisation processes and the management of the internet architecture in a way that could also hinder innovation and efficiency. Many national delegations are interested in hearing the concerns of industry and others. Interested companies and other groups should take steps to monitor the conference preparatory processes and should be on the lookout for opportunities to inform and influence the debate.”

    Last month Gross has appeared before the House subcommittee and said that this is not the first attempt to centralize control over the Internet, while pointing to United Nations talks in 2003 and 2005. To read his testimony, click here.

  2. it appears that the ITU Secretary General, in alliance with Vladimir Putin, is trying to take over the Internet

    “Let me say quite plainly and clearly: This is simply ridiculous.”

    NY Times Debunking rumors of an Internet takeover