An advocacy group called “De-fund the ITU” demands the US government stops funding the International Telecommunications Union (ITU). In a signature campaign they have accused ITU of leading several countries to seize the control of the Internet during WCIT 2012 in Dubai.
Their goal was a coup: to overthrow the open and transparent system of internet governance that ensures the internet’s freedom and accessibility, and replace it with their own central point of absolute control, through which policies of censorship and repression could be enacted.
The group claims that Germany, France, Spain, and Finland have already de-funded the ITU. American technology giants like the IBM, Cingular, Microsoft, Fox, Agilent, Sprint, Harris, Loral, and Xerox have allegedly withdrawn their private-sector contributions from the ITU.
This is merely the logical follow-through to the Senate and House resolutions condemning the ITU’s attack against the Internet and directing the State Department to combat it. Paying for both sides of a conflict is unsustainable and illogical, and should simply be corrected.
If the U.S. government and private sector withdraw their funding from the ITU, its membership revenue will shrink by 10 per cent. If all of the countries that opposed the ITRs stop their payments, the ITU’s 74 per cent earnings will evaporate.
Bangladesh, though voted for the ITR, has already declined to share any financial burden of the ITU. As an immediate result, the clueless officials’ pleasure trip to Geneva will be axed. And the ITU will also learn to live without exotic retreats. It’s time to trim the fat.