Mozilla has just added their name to the list of critics concerned with attempts to rewrite the International Telecommunication Union to give governments control of the Internet. On December 2, 2012, Mozilla came out publicly on their blog to condemn a top-secret meeting in Dubai this week that could lead to changes with how you experience the internet. The ITU is quoted as saying:
Yes you read that right, we are talking about a governing body controlling what you see, read and hear on the Internet. You may ask how will they be able to control the flow of information, and the answer is quite sobering. According to leaked documents, the shot callers from around the globe attending the United Nation’s World Conference on International Telecommunications (WCIT) meeting have "floated the idea of adopting a new standard for the Internet that will implement deep packet inspection, or DPI, essentially allowing all traffic sent across the Web to be reviewed by a governing body." Remember this meeting is taking place in secret and that is why Mozilla is speaking out. An excerpt from their blog reveals their concern over the implications of such a treaty:This landmark conference will review the current International Telecommunication Regulations (ITRs), which serve as the binding global treaty designed to facilitate international interconnection and interoperability of information and communication services, as well as ensuring their efficiency and widespread public usefulness and availability.
The issue isn't whether our governments, the UN or even the ITU should play a role in shaping the Web. The problem is that they are trying to do it behind closed doors, in secret, without us. The Web lets us speak out, share and connect around the things that matter. It creates new opportunities, holds governments to account, breaks through barriers and makes cats famous. This isn't a coincidence. It's because the Web belongs to all of us. We all get a say in how it's built.
Mozilla isn't the only internet name jumping into the mix opposed to the ITU talks, Vint Cerf and Sir Tim Berners-Lee have joined ranks. These 2 gentlemen are two computer scientists widely regarded as instrumental figures in getting the world online. Berners-Lee, the inventor of the World Wide Web, spoke against the ITU just recently while attending the WCIT. Berner-Lee warned that rewriting the international treaty to put Internet regulation in the hands of government is not just unnecessary, but would cause a “disruptive threat to the stability” of the Internet as we now know it.
A lot of concerns I've heard from people have been that, in fact, countries that want to be able to block the Internet and give people within their country a 'secure' view of what's out there would use a treaty at the ITU as a mechanism to do that, and force other countries to fall into line with the blockages that they wanted to put in place.
If you are interested in getting involved, Mozilla has made available a kit of tools and resources to allow people to have their voices heard at the ITU.
Via: RT / Mozilla