Who controls the Internet?

ICANN was going to, apparently.* (No wonder there have been so many people out there claiming that ICANN is eeeeeeeeevil. I never quite put it together before.)

U.S. keeps control of Internet computers

Michael Froomkin, a University of Miami professor who helps run an independent ICANN watchdog site, said the date for relinquishing control has continually slipped.

Some countries, he said, might withdraw support they had for ICANN on the premise it would one day take over the root servers.

In a worst-case scenario, countries refusing to accept U.S. control could establish their own separate domain name system and thus fracture the Internet into more than one network. That means two users typing the same domain name could reach entirely different Web sites, depending on where they are.

The announcement comes just weeks before a U.N. panel is to release a report on Internet governance, addressing such issues as oversight of the root servers, ahead of November’s U.N. World Summit on the Information Society in Tunisia.

Some countries have pressed to move oversight to an international body, such as the U.N. International Telecommunication Union, although the U.S. government has historically had that role because it funded much of the Internet’s early development.

By the way, how do you like that subtitle? “Calls to hand function to international body ignored.” Yes. The US is ham-fisted!

[Revised at 12 noon due to a lack of reading comprehension on my part. Hey, it was like 2:45 am, man…]