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I OPPOSE the "CyberSafety" proposal.

  • To: cyber-safety-petition@xxxxxxxxx
  • Subject: I OPPOSE the "CyberSafety" proposal.
  • From: Alex Pshenichkin <alex.pshenichkin@xxxxxxxxx>
  • Date: Fri, 20 Mar 2009 01:22:14 -0400

To Whom It May Concern:

I wish to voice my opposition to the proposal for a "CyberSafety Constituency".

I see very little in the proposal that has to do with true "Internet
safety" -- secure transactions and communication, protection from
phishing and identity theft, and, yes, the ability for the *end user*
to filter out undesirable content. All of these are concerns that
affect all users, not just a special group of "families, children,
religions, educational institutions, crime victims, spam victims"
(that's from the petition).

Religion. Why religion? Certainly many people look to religion for
personal moral guidance, and it will influence what they personally
consider profane or offensive, but what does religion have to say
about technical methods for allowing end users to filter out
undesirable content based on their own standards? Pretty much nothing.

So, how does religious input help the group do its job? I think it's
pretty obvious: the proposal writers already have a specific plan in
mind, and it requires coming up with a single definition of what
qualifies as "adult" in order to apply it to the entire World Wide
Web. This proposal is being fielded by CP80. CP80's entire agenda is
to ghettoize anything that it considers obscene to its own special
ports. This idea has no technical merit -- it's based on the same
principles as RFC 3514 (the evil bit), sugar-coated with a metaphor
comparing Internet ports to TV channels. And the "CyberSafety
Constituency" is little more than an attempt to create a group to push
such a proposal through ICANN.

ICANN constituencies already do too much to protect and promote
special interests. Creating one more special interest group --
especially at the behest of a lobby group -- won't help that. If you
want to give the average user more representation, remove the existing
constituencies, don't make new ones.

I am an Internet user. The petition claims that the new constituency
would be capable of suitably representing me, my interests, and my
beliefs. I don't believe that it can.

-- Alexandr Pshenichkin

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