The ITU Treaty Negotiations: A Call for Openness and Participation
North American Network Operators’ Group 55th (NANOG 55) Meeting, June 2012
23 Pages Posted: 7 Jun 2012
Date Written: June 4, 2012
The International Telecommunications Union (ITU) is renegotiating its treaty with the 193 countries of the world, and it hopes to expand from the telecommunications arena into the Internet. However, there’s one major problem with this shift in mandate: The ITU is a closed organization and has been for nearly 150 years. The ITU’s rules and processes may have worked for the old state-run telecom monopolies, but they cannot work in regulating the Internet, where standards have been developed in an open manner since its inception. Thus, in order to gain legitimacy with the Internet community, the ITU will need to (1) open its processes for review and comment by civil society, academics, the private sector, and the public; (2) make its TIES database freely and publicly accessible for review and comment; and (3) allow multistakeholder participation in developing standards and protocols, particularly where other groups (like the IETF) are actively developing standards.
Keywords: ITU, Internet Governance, IETF, TIES, WCIT
JEL Classification: K20, K23, L50, L90, L96
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation