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Internet Governance Takes Center Stage at ICANN’s Buenos Aires Meeting

[ICANN news release] The future of Internet governance took on a new priority at the opening of ICANN’s 48th Public Meeting, ahead of an April conference on Internet governance in Brazil. More than 1,700 people from around the world are attending the ICANN meeting in Buenos Aires.”ICANN is part of an ecosystem, and the environment around us affects us” said ICANN President and CEO Fadi Chehadé. “We have to be engaged. It doesn’t mean we leave behind our responsibilities. It doesn’t mean we increase our responsibilities, but we have to also be active participants in the ecosystem, this is central to the multistakeholder success on a global level.”Communications Secretary and Chief of the Cabinet of Ministers of Argentina, Juan Manuel Abal Medina, Jr., stressed the importance of keeping up with a rapidly growing network. “We have a human resource deficit. We must design public policies that will help us overcome these obstacles in terms of growth.”
During the Annual General Meeting, ICANN Board Chair Dr. Stephen Crocker remarked on the groundbreaking work of the community of Internet organizations in bringing the issue of governance to the forefront through the Montevideo Statement on the Future of Internet Cooperation.”We have to have a more inclusive framework. We have to have the participation from everybody – civil society, academia, business, et cetera,” said Crocker. “And if we don’t preserve that and we don’t preserve that inclusiveness, then we will redefine – which is a very polite word for ‘do enormous damage to’ – the most inclusive communications system that man has ever devised.”During the Buenos Aires Meeting, which is also ICANN’s Annual General Meeting, Chehadé outlined the organization’s accomplishments over the past year and also praised the success of the New generic Top-Level Domain (gTLDs) Program. So far, 24 new top-level domains have been delegated into the Domain Name System (DNS).”Today, we can celebrate the success. The gTLD program is off the ground,” remarked Chehadé. “In fact, we have added more new gTLDs to the root today than all the gTLDs in the history of ICANN.”
ICANN also announced that Lesley Cowley, the CEO at the U.K. registry Nominet, is the winner of the first Leadership Award. The organization also announced plans to create a new award to honor community members called the Multistakeholder Ethos Award. The first Ethos award will be presented at the next ICANN meeting in Singapore.Also during the Buenos Aires meeting, the Korea Internet and Security Agency (KISA) and ICANN announced that they had signed a Memorandum of Understanding. Under the memorandum, ICANN and KISA will closely collaborate on engagement efforts in Korea and implement a pilot project to promote language localization efforts in the region.ICANN’s 48th Public Meeting in Buenos Aires will continue through Thursday.