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Context - and the subtext - is very important to understanding. And all information absent context tends to noise. So, I'm going to answer you by adding a little more information for context. And advise that you do a little 'triangulating' for subtext to emerge.
Let us be clear about objectives. And recognize that we might have the same objectives. But for different reasons and needs.
If, like me, you subscribe to the proposition of an Internet that affords the free flow of contending ideas, including money-making ones and would rather see every and all kinds of opinions, not only politically-correct ones, afforded the disinfectant of the 'sunshine' by which reasonable people examining all of them could reject all by declaring a pox on all their houses, then fragmentation is ALWAYS bad.
So now, think you on these things. Last month, President Obama signed an executive order that provides guidelines for the U.S. Military in cyber warfare.
Last week the Pentagon officially acknowledged cyberspace as a warfare domain:
With these actions, the Internet is now officially a permanent national security interest of the United States Government.
This is not to be taken lightly. If you haven't thought this thru as yet, information - its easy and unrestrained flow - is even more central to modern war making - and defense from war. So, given the global importance of survivable and self-healing telecommunications networks to war-making and enabling easy reach of both friends and adversaries, fragmentation of the Internet and cyber warfare is an inconvenient mix, especially when you are on the offensive.
The subtext for decrying fragmentation as illiberal is good but not the only reason; it is wholly inconvenient when 'pariah' states such as Iran and N. Korea and fellow travelers cauterize and cut themselves off.
Next, the plaint about pre-Internet era regulatory schemes. Read what they say here with great skepticism; the '(and money)' part is the dead giveway. Really rich,that! I will bet you my right hand that it is NEVER about the control. It really is about the money. But this must be clothed in a shield of piety. The fact is the northern metropolitan countries are by far and way the greatest beneficiaries of the global digital economy today. And you would be a common fool if you think they would not be anxious to preserve this position. Almost all of the necessary infrastructure - consisting of domain registries, domain registrars, online payment systems etc. - is concentrated in the northern metropolitan countries, who just happen to share membership of the OECD. So, money advantage, OECD.
The nexus of multistakeholder concerns and 'Our Internet foreign policy' is an arriviste position. For quite frankly, the original 'multistakeholder' concept that was in play did not go much beyond OECD and certain 'friends'; see Madame Redding's proposal at the time of the ICANN/USG Affirmation of Commitments brouhaha. Africa and the Caribbean were not considered worthy. Ditto most of Latin America with the possible exception of Brazil. China, that ominous colossus for Internet use - and arguably the future of the Internet - was embraced like an unloved third cousin on your mother's side.
That said, it is somewhat satisfying to see the final paragraph in print. Let us be vigilant and watch the practical steps taken to effect this hopeful future telegraphed here.
If not already engaged, I implore all of you to begin to follow and participate in Internet Governance policy matters thru ICANN and the IGF. There are way too few of us from the Caribbean involved. And we need more.
Consider joining the ICANN At-Large organisation. The regional IGF takes place next month in Trinidad and Tobago (Aug 8-11).
Here are a few links for more information: