The Plot Against the Internet

The plot against the Internet

Bureaucrats from around the world will gather behind closed doors in Dubai next week to plot an end to the Internet as we know it — or so Washington would have you believe.

Hill lawmakers warn that the 120-plus U.S. delegation needs to fend off efforts by China, Russia and developing nations to use a United Nations branch organization to censor or tax the Net. Google is orchestrating an online petition drive, and even Grover Norquist is involved.

The hype is a perfect storm for Matt Drudge: The U.N. will take over the Internet — unless you act fast.

"It was very important for the United States to send a shot across the bow and let countries like China and Russia know that we are onto the games they’re trying to play,” said Rep. Mary Bono Mack (R-Calif.), who led a successful effort to pass a resolution against the interference in August. Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) backed a companion measure in the Senate.

What’s more likely — almost certain to happen, really — is that the World Conference on International Telecommunications will fail to change much of anything about the way the Web works or who cashes in during the two weeks of meetings that start Monday in this Middle Eastern enclave.

But paranoia runs deep in D.C. — almost as deep as the pockets of the tech companies and front groups that don’t want to take any chance that the U.S. government would endorse a treaty that would scramble their business models.
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