Come design the future of IANA

By Kieren McCarthy.

In an unexpected move late last week, the US government announced it would transition the IANA contract to ICANN in 18 months' time.

As anyone who has followed Internet governance will know, the IANA contract has been at the centre of international argument for more than a decade, with many calling for change. 

Now it seems that change is upon us. The question that remains is: what change and how?

/1net has been working on this exact issue for many months now with numerous threads and hundreds of emails all working on an answer to the question 'what next?'

The value of those existing contributions will increase in the next few months as people settle down to defining the best way to run the IANA functions now and into the future. 

In Singapore next week, the ICANN community will start discussions, and in Sao Paulo in April, we can expect that IANA will be a main topic of conversation at NetMundial. Not to mention the interest that will be shown at regional IGFs and the main Internet Governance Forum, taking place in Istanbul in September.

All of these venues provide highly valuable opportunities for the Internet community to meet face-to-face and reach agreement on the best way forward. But to make the most of those limited interactions, we need to put in the groundwork. To have a fruitful discussion, it always helps to be able to define what areas of agreement and disagreement exist and why.

And that is what /1net is here for.

/1net was created to provide an inclusive and open venue supporting discussion of Internet governance matters for all those interested and to deliver the results of those discussions to the agendas of established and developing Internet governance institutions.

Nowhere is that more valuable at the moment than in deciding how the IANA contract will be transitioned from the US government to ICANN. We have 18 months to do it, and a number of big conferences in between. So let's come together on /1net and design the future of IANA.