Free Speech: The U.N. plans to control the tool that tyrants fear most — technology that promotes free speech and intellectual freedom — by imposing a global tax in the name of fairness. Think of net neutrality on steroids.
Elections have consequences, and one consequence of President Obama's re-election may be U.S. acquiescence to the administrative control of the Internet to the United Nations and journalist-jailing and Web-censoring regimes from Iran to Venezuela, complete with a global tax on its use.
The U.N.'s International Telecommunications Union (ITU) is holding the World Conference on International Telecommunications in Dubai from Dec. 3 to 14. U.N. member states, largely composed of Third World despots, will be meeting to update the ITU treaty arrangements for international communications.
The ITU last drafted a treaty on communications in 1988, before the dawn of the Internet as we know it, and many of the world's thugs seek to restrict its freedoms by imposing on it a global tax. The Internet was then primarily a university network, and Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg was a mere 4 years old.
Today, the self-regulating Internet means no one has to ask for permission to launch a website, and no government can tell network operators how to do their jobs. The Internet freely crosses international boundaries, making it difficult for governments to censor or to tax.
Regimes such as Russia and Iran also want an ITU rule letting them monitor Internet traffic routed through or to their countries, allowing them to eavesdrop or block access.
Since at least 2004, the ITU has tried repeatedly to wrest power from ICANN, the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers, the multi-stakeholder body created in 1998 to oversee domain names and addresses. ...
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