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Public Policy

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What is Internet Public Policy?

Our work is based upon our fundamental belief that the Internet is for everyone. In pursuing our objectives, we operate collaboratively and inclusively, working with governments, national and international organizations, civil society, the private sector, and other parties to reach decisions about the Internet that conform to our core values. A primary focus of our public policy work is Internet governance which in 2016 is focused on these three areas:

Our work is informed by the results of our 2015 Internet Governance Survey and we created an Internet Governance Timeline to help track the many events happening over the course of 2016.

How We Work

We work in a multi-stakeholder fashion towards the development of an Open and Sustainable Internet for the benefit of all people. Because the Internet impacts all of us, we work with partners globally of all shapes and sizes to make sure we can address a wide range of social, economic, and policy issues that interfere with an open and sustainable Internet.  For more information regarding our community and partners please visit our Community and Partners Page.


Public Policy Blog

  • It's been a year since we adopted the Sustainable Development Goals - a new roadmap for international development.  

    It is an exciting time for those of us who focus on bringing Information and Communication Technologies to the world. While Goal 9 calls out the need for Internet access, it is also clear that Internet development is key to accomplish all the SDGs. 

    But the task is a big one. Rough estimates say we'll need at least $1 trillion of additional annual investment in developing and emerging economies to achieve them.

    It's numbers like these that have...

    Date published 03 October 2016

  • As part of our efforts to advance global Internet connectivity, the Internet Society is pleased to release today a "beta version" of A Policy Framework for Enabling Internet Access, which provides recommendations for policymakers in creating an environment that supports Internet growth. We welcome your comments on the document which can be sent to 

    One year ago this month, through the adoption of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), governments...

    Date published 15 September 2016

  • This is a key moment for the IANA transition. On September 30, the contract between the US Commerce Departments National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) and the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) is set to expire. As this date approaches, some members of the United States Congress have expressed reservations about allowing the IANA transition to go forward. There have been calls by some to block the transition while others have suggested that a delay is in order.  

    In a letter to key Congressional leaders, the Internet Society...

    Date published 12 September 2016

  • At the Internet Society’s Student Pizza Night during IETF 96, I asked several students from Europe, Asia, and North America how they would respond to the same question:

    How do we make young Internet users more secure?

    Every student I asked said that security for young Internet users is a problem. The majority thought that both poor security practices and a general ignorance of the risks contribute to the problem. Pokémon Go was used as an example. Millions of younger users may be playing games without considering the security and privacy implications they may have. In this...

    Date published 08 August 2016

  • We are pleased to announce the publication of our latest two policy briefs on Encryption and Identity. This is part of our commitment from last year to produce content on various policy issues relating to the Internet. Our policy briefs series aims to assist policy makers (and anyone else interested) to understand current trends and discussions as they take place.

    In the Encryption brief, we provide some key considerations and guiding principles for discussions around encryption. Our position is that while the concerns of law enforcement agencies are valid, we are still firm in our...

    Date published 27 July 2016