Joi Ito's Web

Joi Ito's conversation with the living web.

The Working Group on Internet Governance has issued its final report. The WGIG is a group of experts tasked by the United Nations to think about and come up with a report about Internet governance. Many people were concerned because the meeting was kicked off by the Secretary General of the International Telecommunications Union (ITU) saying that this was about questioning ICANN. The comments gave me the sense that the ITU was trying to take over ICANN's role and wanted a report to justify this. In fact, the group of experts represented a broad range of opinions and have produced an interesting report. It recommends several possible scenarios for the future for ICANN. Only one of the four scenarios calls for starting from scratch without ICANN. According to Kieren McCarthy of The Register, "UN report to leave ICANN’s balls intact". ;-P

For those of you who have difficulty understanding the report or don't have time to read it, Wortfeld has a wonderful graphical visualization of the scenarios. I am not a WGIG expert. Can anyone tell me if these visualizations are accurate?

Also, it's interesting to note that the ITU is not mentioned in the report. I suppose that the ITU is part of the "UN Anchor" that is referred to, but they are not discussed in the report. Or maybe they're supposed to appear later like Mighty Mouse.

Anyway, thanks to everyone who put effort into creating this report.


I'll happily integrate the Mighty ITU Mouse in the visualization if you tell me where...

I'd like to know what's wrong with the current system, at least as it relates to assigning IP addresses and names. It seems to work. Is there an unfairness factor somewhere I haven't seen?

I'm following the WSIS process very closely and have just posted a blog entry on the WGIG report. Check it out here -