Statement by Mr. Roberto Gaetano, Vice-Chair
Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
Mr. Secretary General, dear distinguished guests. I’m honored to
be here today to speak at this conference at the kind invitation
by the ITU.
I would like to start by pointing out the ongoing collaboration
between ICANN and the ITU that has been distinguished over the
years by mutual exchanges. We have particularly appreciated the
participation of the Secretary General at our meeting in Cairo
I would like to say a few words about what ICANN does and what
can contribute to the topics of this forum. ICANN has a limited
technical responsibility for the management of the unique
Internet identifier system; basically, the names and the numbers
that are used to reach people over the Internet.
Key issues that ICANN is dealing with are related. For instance,
we are in the middle of the process of introducing new top level
domains and finishing the policies for this introduction.
This role that ICANN has — that is, introducing new top level
domains — is affecting the global Internet community a great
deal. If I can just recall for you the fact that 10 years ago
the prices for buying a domain name were much higher than today
and that by creating some competition in the marketplace — not
only with the introduction of new gTLDs, but also with having
registrars that are now all over the world operating close to
the local communities and also in developing countries — we have
eliminated a monopoly system.
ICANN is also dealing with country code top level domains on
issues that relate to their interoperability.
Another very important aspect is the security, stability and
resiliency of the Internet. The importance of establishing a
secure Internet at a global level is something that is
acknowledged by every party.
ICANN’s Security and Stability Advisory Committee is addressing
these security and stability issues and is concerned about the
introduction of DNSSEC and the propagation of secure
communication — from the root system down to the DNS tree.
ICANN is also involved in the Internationalized Domain Names —
the introduction of domain names that are not written in ASCII
characters at the top level — and that is going to be an immense
contribution, especially for the countries and populations that
use different languages and language scripts.
IDNs will not solve multilingual content — that will only come
from the generation and use of content — but it does enhance the
multicultural and multilingual aspect of the Internet. The ”multilingual
internet” is another area where I would like to mention our
fruitful collaboration with the ITU. As the Secretary General
also mentioned in his report, there is collaboration between the
ITU, ICANN, UNESCO and other international organizations to
achieve this important objective.
We are also involved in IP addressing by distributing blocks of
addresses to the regional registries, that now exist and operate
in all geographic areas, and are part of the ICANN community,
and these addresses then flow down to the domain registries. We
have fought to distribute the addresses close to the local
communities because doing so brings the issues close to the end
With cooperation and hard work from the RIRs, we now have
consensus policies on equitable distribution of the last IPv4
address blocks, and are working on the introduction of IPv6 in
So what can we say in terms of conclusion of this? What’s needed
for the Internet’s success to continue is not only ongoing
innovation at the edge, but access to the Internet, the ability
to be online, the infrastructure. The task of ICANN is to manage
the parameters of the Internet.
We all have a responsibility to make sure that once online,
people can communicate. And to do that we need the strengths of
all industries, all sectors, working together to address issues
and identify solutions.
In today’s economic climate, this is of course particularly
important and true. There are many organizations, businesses,
and stakeholders involved.
I think that the Internet is a technical innovation that has
changed the way people and organizations communicate, and it has
produced a new model for communication that also has social
We believe that the governance model of this new thing on the
Internet has to be adapted to the technology. It needs an
equally innovative, participative model that is inclusive of all
people and organizations that have an interest at stake. This is
the leading idea of ICANN’s philosophy — the multistakeholder
model — and that means cooperation and collaboration with all
entities involved in the Internet — governments, business, civil
society, technical community, end users.
ICANN’s approach is to have all these different entities around
the table to take part in the development of consensus policies.
ICANN’s task and ICANN’s approach is to involve these different
organizations and individuals in the establishment of consensus
I would leave you with one parting thought — a single,
interoperable Internet is essential for a successful information
society, a knowledge society, a contributor to the success of
coming out of the current global economic situation by
empowering and enabling innovation, efficiency, cost cutting
measures while also fostering new businesses.
And I think that the key issue is to bring together in this
process all the organizations, all the stakeholders, and to have
continuous participation and contribution from all the parties
that have an interest at stake.
We look forward to continuing participation, and contribution,
to these discussions.