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ACM Opinion

Don't Give Your Dot-org Domain Away to a Private Company

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.ORG is a top-level domain.

According to Esther Dyson, one of the Internets most trusted assets is being hijacked.


Esther Dyson served as the founding chair of the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers from 1998 to 2000. She serves on the boards for a number of nonprofit organizations that use dot-org domain names and is executive founder of the nonprofit Wellville.

One of the Internet's most trusted assets — the dot-org domain used by nonprofits from UNICEF to your local food bank — is being hijacked. Dot-org, which was built to support nonprofits globally, is being sold to the highest bidder with almost no public discussion or consideration of alternatives. Organizations and their supporters who rely on dot-org for website and email access deserve an open process. The institutions that govern the Internet should be transparent. It is up to those of us who believe in a free and open Internet to demand this deal be reconsidered.

Twenty-two years ago, I was the founding chair of an organization called the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers. ICANN was designed to fill a vacuum that was enticing to all kinds of power, and thus to keep the Internet decentralized and free from any overbearing power center. Our mission was to keep outside interests, whether financial or political, from taking over a global public service.


From The Washington Post
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