Ethenet cables. Photo: Flickr/Dugbee

Photo: Flickr/Dugbee

To its great credit, the Obama administration has refused to sign on to a United Nations agreement that would have put more of the Internet under international governance and potentially curtailed the freedom that has allowed it to thrive.

This is consistent with what Heritage Foundation scholars Brett Schaefer and James Gattuso recommended:

The U.S. must articulate clear red lines and, if they are crossed, be willing to walk away. Protecting the vitality and viability of the Internet is preferable to signing on to a compromise agreement that violates key principles and undercuts the framework that has contributed to its success.

It’s definitely encouraging that the U.S. took this same position, though Heritage research was not likely the decisive factor.

The United Nations agreement, they argued, is deeply flawed. “At best, this is unnecessary, as the Internet is doing quite well under the current framework,” they explained. “At worst, the expansion will allow the U.N.—parent organization of the ITU—to stifle the Web.”

Do you think international organizations should play a greater role in regulating and managing the Internet?

Comments (32)

Daniel Schultz - December 20, 2012

The internet is possibly one of the last method of people
expressing their thoughts freely. For us ( the world) to lose this
to me is un thinkable. I fear that even our on government desires
unlimited control for their selfish, people control goals. We must
remain vigilant !

Rob - December 20, 2012

Absolutely not!!!

R L Nymeyer - December 20, 2012

Do you think international organizations should play a
greater role in regulating and managing the Internet? NO…and
NEVER! It should have no authority over, nor any control of
anything! It should in every respect be subordinate to the
sovereignty of all nations. It was not intended to be, nor should
be allowed to function in any manner as a world

Henry Schwab - December 20, 2012

I think that if an international organization clashes with
the US Constitution, the US should withdraw from said organization
with concomitant withdrawal of financial support.

A Critic - December 20, 2012

Of course the USA was right/correct to walk away from the
internationl controls side of the internet question. Let’s just
hope our otherwise seriosuly flawed, cirrupt and out-of control
Obama Administration did not get ideas from the internationalists
and will now impose their own tailor made constraints at home to
serve their looney and dangerous liberal agenda. And they do have
such a tendency which is manifested in the most self-destructive
governance in the history of the country. KEEP THE INTERNET FREE,

John Daugherty - December 20, 2012

all governments should stay out of the internet, except for
illegal activities such as fraud and child pornography.

LaDell - December 20, 2012

I find it dismaying the the U.N. is the parent of any labor
organization. The U.S. should not be part of the U.N. or any other
organization that wastes so much money, exempts its forces from
persecution from crimes in the nations in which it is inserted, and
has as its stated agenda the destruction of the sovereignty of
nations. (Agenda 21) The U.N. is the antithesis to the God-given
liberties that the United States Constitution recognizes and
protects. Morte aux tyrants!

James T. :Pott - December 20, 2012

The UN has an abysmal record in regulating or managing
anything. It is a compromise collection of opposing viewpoints with
a better record of corruption than effectiveness.

Hallie Roberts - December 20, 2012

Absolutely not! They should play no role whatsoever in
controlling the Internet!!!

Barton L. Hartzell - December 20, 2012

Nothing should be done by any international organization
to impede, stifle or control our First Amend,ment rights
to free speech.

June E. Knnipper - December 20, 2012

Inre International: This Country, the United States of America, Needs absolutely NO interference from any International Organizations regarding our Governance! We have a Constitution and Bill of Rights set forth by our founding fathers by which we should be governed and NO ONE , including present menbers of our own government, has the right to interfere with those laws. The sooner we rid ourselves of those who think differently and return to a nation restored to being dedicated to God, our Creator and the Constitutional form of Government the better off we shall all be!!!

June E. Knipper - December 20, 2012

in re International :
This country, the United States of America Needs NO international interference with our manner of Governance. We have a Constitution and Bill of Rights set forth by our found fathers and NO ONE, including those members of our present government, has the right to interfere with that Constitutional form of Government.
The sooner we are rid of those who think differently, and we restore thie Nation to one under God our Creator and our Constitutional goverment the better off we all will be !!!

Gary Moore - December 20, 2012

No interference by outside international organizations on anything… internet, taxes, guns, Nothing!!

Jeff Yetter - December 21, 2012

Thoroughly disheartening to recognize that the U.N. pre-dated the Federal government as a cacophonous, bleeting, bleeding management agency, abjectly failing any semblance of the noble intent with which it was chartered.
A totally irrelevant body consistently at odds with our nation’s founding documents and principles.

Paul Tufo - December 21, 2012

No international organization should regulate the internet. We should quit the UN.

Hildegard Wortner - December 21, 2012

No international regulation on the internet or anywhere in our country period.

Daryn Kent-Duncan - December 21, 2012

International organizations should have absolutely no part in controlling the internet in any way or degree. Even if they were not the grossly inept and corrupt organizations they tend to be, they should have no part in controlling our lives.

R. Quesenbury - December 21, 2012

Oppose the U. N. at every issue. It is up to no good for use or for anybody else. Our national sovereignty is being challenged by this meddling organization and should be opposed on all fronts. Two things need to happen: 1) Stop financing over 20 per cent of its budget, and 2) withdraw membership and send it packing somewhere across the Atlantic Ocean.

Joy Dilg - December 21, 2012

Never ever!!!!

Carol Bartz - December 21, 2012

I agree with the comments on this page. We need to protect our rights under OUR constitution, not rules imposed on us by the corrupt members of the UN. They do not have our best interests in mind. You just need to listen to what their members say. What they want to control. That should make up anyones’ mind.

Damon - December 21, 2012

The internet was designed to create free thought. Not big
brother’s thought control. So to answer your question that would be

Elizabeth Poggi - December 21, 2012

The UN has no business controlling anything, anywhere. It
is a corrupt money grubbing political organization.

Patricia - December 21, 2012

NO! To many countrys, who don’t want free communications
that would keep their citizens in the dark about what is going on
in the world, and their own government, could and would stiffle our
own right to know what is going on in the world.

Donald DaCosta - December 21, 2012

The United Nations or any other international organization
should have no right, none whatsoever nor under any circumstance,
have a controlling authority regarding any activity within the
United States of America. We are a civilized society perfectly
capable of effectively policing ourselves. The International
community has no interest in protecting the rights of a sovereign
nations citizenry. It will act in ways that it thinks benefit a
majority of the nations involved. If the UN has proven anything it
is that its majorities major interests have nothing to do with
benefiting us. Any suggestion or initiative aimed at global control
should be rejected out of hand.

holly chapo - December 21, 2012

No international organization should be allowed to regulate the internet. The only regulators should be parents. And the reasons should be obvious. We have a Constitution, probably the most brilliant governing document ever created. That should always serve as our guide and beacon of freedom.

Juliana McQuaid - December 21, 2012

No,Freedom must be first!

james c hughes iii - December 22, 2012

The answer to the question, now and always is NO and NEVER!

James J. Rieker - December 22, 2012

Abridging the freedom of the press or speech is not
tolerated in a free enterprise system, or capitalist system in the
USA. I believe the first amendment made to the constitution states
that. If Our goverment doesn’t want to follow the First Amendment
take it out of the Constitution. otherwise you are breaking the Law
of our land to allow the internet to be controlled.

Donald Vastlik - December 24, 2012

No international agencynshoud have any control of our
internal issues.

W. Colborne Mullen - December 25, 2012

I would disassociate the United States, from any
connection, to this kind, of movement. We must remain a soverign
nation. These kinds, of ideas, will not lead, to a better place,
but they would instead put the free world, at a disadvantage. I do
not ever want, to ask, anyones permission, to speak

Jeanne Welch - December 25, 2012

What is left if we give all control away? Esp. to people
who do not like us, not in the past, not now, & not in the
future. The less responsibility you give to people, the less
responsible they become.

e.c.c. - December 30, 2012

This is just one part of the U.N.’s plan for global
governance; control of the internet…

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