your citizenship in the Internet at stake!

Heather heather at
Fri Jul 28 18:00:22 BST 2000


Major global trade hell heads-up:  direct trade in meanings of words,
in all languages, which is a fait accompli without immediate action:
URGENT - PLEASE FORWARD - activists, please join ICANN by July 31.

The Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) is 
about to decide what words and phrases will become globally respected
and protected intellectual property for purposes of distributing 
information on the Internet.  Which is, increasingly, all information.

Why do you care?  Because whoever controls the meanings of phrases like
like "" or "black.crime" or "master.race" or "safe.streets"
or "" or "loving.god" or "treason" or "terror" or "truth" 
itself is going to have endless opportunities to distort that truth.

Some words shouldn't be private property.  In fact some are essential
to the communication of basic body and family and social decisions.
In the offline political system, we fight for years to change simple
definitions of words like "crime" and "justice".  In the new online
system, as in Orwell's "1984", there is a market in meanings of words.

You have only until Monday to decide if you will be a *maker* of 
these decisions, or a *victim* of these decisions.  ICANN will not
go away by protests or wishing.  It's like WTO.  Please, activists:

Join ICANN.  Without it you don't get a vote on what Internet
names mean and who gets TLDs or dispute rights to tell what stories:  <-- join before July 31!

This is very important.  Please forward it to as many 16-and-up year
olds as possible.  The word "organic" could be meaningless, as could
the words "vegan" or "cruelty free" or "free range" if the new net
naming spaces are allowed to be created without any ecological or
social accountability, or even "truth in advertising".  As it is now
the name "Coke" could end up with strong protections in new TLDs but
the word "vegan" would end up with none.  The World Intellectual
Property Organization has laid out their positions in ICANN, now it's
time for the opposition to do so. 

Those who join by July 31 will have a voice in the October elections
to the ICANN At Large Board.  Those who don't, will be whining for the
rest of their lives that Internet names have become a jumble and chaos
where you can't find out the truth unless you spend a lot of money on
it... where you may not even have a *voice* in what words in your own
language mean.  Personally, people who don't join are going to find it
very hard to get me to pay attention to their complaints about labels!

This is *THE* global labelling system.  There will not be another one!  <-- join before July 31!

Among other things, the new ICANN At Large Board of Directors will be
able to fight to ensure that misleading use of important label words,
like "vegan", "kosher", "halal", "organic", etc., *DON'T JUST FALL TO
THE HIGHEST BIDDER* as have so many words in the ".com", ".net" and
even the ".org" names spaces (to say nothing of the .tm and .tv ...!)  <-- join before July 31!

Forward widely.  This is your citizenship in the Internet at stake!

[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]

More information about the Diggers350 mailing list