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Re: [IFWP] RE: Coincidence?
>At 10:28 PM 7/28/99 , Ellen Rony wrote:
>>FWIW, I don't concur with Jay's theories about a biased press. We have
>>not bias but confusion. This evolution of the DNS is complicated,
>>convoluted, and contentious, so it isn't easy to report on the activities
>>of ICANN and the Department of Commerce in terms that the general
>>readership can understand.
Jay Fenello wrote:
>Frankly, I don't why this story has not been covered.
>All that I know for certain is that 1) it *hasn't* been
>covered, and 2) "confusion" is an explanation that simply
>doesn't work for me (especially when I have personally
>described, in no uncertain terms, my perspectives to
>many of the reporters writing these biased pieces).
I applaud your efforts, several years strong, to educate the journalists
and interested parties.
My theory about the coverage of the USG/ICANN story is: this shift of
Internet administration to the private sector has so many twists and turns
that it isn't easily given to soundbytes. Mention ICANN and a reporter
must then also describe the whole transfer of functions from NSF to NTIA,
from IANA to ICANN. Most readers' eyes will glaze over before you can say
Contributing to the confusion is the "divide and conquer" factor. It's hard
to get a profile of the situation because so many issues are being debated
simultaneously in a rush to the endgame. Into the middle of what we are
told is a bottom-up consensus based decision making process, we have DOJ
investigating NSI, Congress investigating ICANN, and the EU entering the
melee. This is headspinning activity, even for the most devout followers
of the process.
It reminds me of the towns that, seeing opportunity for raising their
property tax revenue base, develop their hillsides in a mad sweep of
construction while the old timers lament the destruction of views and
clogging of traffic arteries. Years later, when the building subsides and
the policymakers take a breath, they may regret their haste but by then
there's a new paridigm in place and a new generation of residents who don't
remember what the town looked like when its now densely populated hillsides
were open space.
I lament that it took eight months of dischord and, finally, involvement of
the DOC to get ICANN to hold open meetings; that this is supposed to be a
bottom-up consensus-based structure but that there is no representation in
current decisionmaking of the non-commercial Internet users (a substantial
body); that working groups are proceeding to final recommendations
although they are not constituted in accord with the ICANN bylaws; that
recommendations will be forwarded to an unelected, unaccountable,
incomplete and interim body.
So, Jay, we pick our battles. But claiming a biased press on these
complicated issues simmply isn't one of those I wish to pursue.
Ellen Rony Co-author
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