According to Saki, “a man is known by the company he keeps”. When you cut through the hysteria, hyperbole and doomy predictions about WCIT, you’re left with the now-familiar Internet governance binary choice: ICANN or ITU.
Let’s leave aside for the moment the unanswerable, and unanswered, question of how a transition from one to the other would be made, whether the “Internet community’ would accept any forced change, or whether it would just go off and do its own thing (as usual). Let’s focus instead on which is better, ICANN or ITU.
It’s clear that if these things were done on merit, neither organisation covers itself in glory. ICANN, the enfant terrible of Internet governance is the once-beautiful child, full of potential, capable of greatness, now transformed into the spotty, grunting adolescent, slouching in doorways and developing unsociable habits. It continues to baffle observers by its capacity to ignore the things it should be doing, and do the things it shouldn’t.