DUBAI, United Arab Emirates (TheBlaze/AP) — A U.N. conference weighing possible Internet rules shifted into a high-stakes showdown on Thursday after advancing a proposal for greater government oversight. The proposal was a blow to U.S.-led efforts to keep new regulations from touching the Net.
The move frames the ideological divide at the 193-nation gathering in Dubai, which is scheduled to wrap up Friday with its first revisions of global telecom rules since 1988 – years before the dawn of the Internet age.
“It’s not a crime to talk about Internet inside the ITU,” said the group’s secretary-general, Hamadoun Toure, suggesting high-level support to keep debate going on Internet issues.
In response, the head of the U.S. delegation, Ambassador Terry Kramer, said: “We do not believe the focus of this conference should be on the Internet and we did not come to this conference in anticipation of a discussion on the Internet.”
A Western bloc led by a powerhouse U.S. delegation seeks to block any U.N. rules on cyberspace, fearing they could squeeze Web commerce and open the door for more restrictions and monitoring by authoritarian regimes…
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