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ICANN declares independence, breaks ties with U.S. government

The Internet's keeper of domain names and IP addresses has gone global. On Wednesday, the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) and the US Department of Commerce said the agency will no longer have ties to the US government and will remain a private, not-for-profit organization.

The Internet's keeper of domain names and IP addresses has gone global. On Wednesday, the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) and the US Department of Commerce said the agency will no longer have ties to the US government and will remain a private, not-for-profit organization.

That has other parts of the world cheering, including the European Commission, which has been calling for Icann's independence from the US government since 2005, according to a report on ZDNet UK. In a statement, the EC said:

Internet users worldwide can now anticipate that Icann's decisions on domain names and addresses will be more independent and more accountable, taking into account everyone's interests... If effectively and transparently implemented, this reform can find broad acceptance among civil society, businesses and governments alike.

Under the terms of the new agreement, the Dept. of Commerce will take a seat on ICANN's Governmental Advisory Committee.