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House of Representatives: Internet Governance Bill

Published April 17, 2013

The House of Representatives Subcommittee on Communications and Technology passed the Internet Governance Bill on April 17, 2013, which reinforces the "policy of the United States to preserve and advance the successful multistakeholder model that governs the Internet." The bill will go on for a vote in the House.

SECTION 1. FINDINGS.

The Congress finds the following:

(1) Given the importance of the Internet to the global economy, it is essential that the Internet remain stable, secure, and free from government control.

(2) The world deserves the access to knowledge, services, commerce, and communication, the accompanying benefits to economic development, education, and health care, and the informed discussion that is the bedrock of democratic self-government that the Internet provides.

(3) The structure of Internet governance has profound implications for competition and trade, democratization, free expression, and access to information.

(4) Countries have obligations to protect human rights, whether exercised online or offline.

(5) The ability to innovate, develop technical capacity, grasp economic opportunities, and promote freedom of expression online is best realized in cooperation with all stakeholders.

(6) Proposals have been, and will likely continue to be, put forward at international regulatory bodies that would fundamentally alter the governance and operation of the Internet.

(7) The proposals would attempt to justify increased government control over the Internet and could undermine the current multistakeholder model that has enabled the Internet to flourish and under which the private sector, civil society, academia, and individual users play an important role in charting its direction.

(8) The proposals would diminish the freedom of expression on the Internet in favor of government control over content.

(9) The position of the United States Government has been and is to advocate for the flow of information free from government control.

(10) This Administration and past Administrations have made a strong commitment to the multistakeholder model of Internet governance and the promotion of the global benefits of the Internet.

SEC. 2. POLICY REGARDING INTERNET GOVERNANCE.

It is the policy of the United States to preserve and advance the successful multistakeholder model that governs the Internet.


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