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Stephen Conroy: Australian govt to oppose Internet governance changes

Stephen Conroy: Australian govt to oppose Internet governance changesWith the 12-day conference of the International Telecommunications Union (ITU) likely to witness a debate among the delegates of 193 countries about governance of the global Internet, Australian Communications Minister Stephen Conroy recently said that the changes which will broaden the governments' control over the Internet will be opposed by Australia.

The conference - which gets underway December 3 in Dubai - will chiefly have the ITU garnering support for the changes to the 1988-formulated International Telecommunications Regulations (ITR). The proposed changes call for an amendment of the ITR in such a way that the governments are given a greater control over the Internet, instead of existing independent organisations, like the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN).

Revealing that the Australian government will oppose the changes to the ITR, Conroy - who is in Dubai for the conference - said that ICANN should continue to the in charge of Internet governance; and added: "Australia does not believe a case has been made for (ITR) change."

Noting that the success of Internet is largely a consequence of the ICANN's multi-stakeholder model, Conroy said that the ICANN model should be retained so that the Internet remains "a central point for innovation and a driver of economic growth."

Further adding that the global Domain Name System should still be managed by the ICANN, Conroy said that Australia wants to ensure that the ITR amendments "do not fundamentally change the way the Internet operates."