June 19, 2012

For immediate release:  Tuesday, June 19, 2012
Contact:  Meghan Fletcher, mfletcher@itic.org, (202) 524-4389
Make the Commitment to a Free and Open Internet
ITI Urges Congress to Approve H. Con. Res. 127
WASHINGTON, D.C…. The Information Technology Industry Council (ITI) on Tuesday urged the U.S. House of Representatives to back a bipartisan resolution that would oppose any government control and regulation of the Internet.  The resolution is expected to go before the full House on Wednesday.
An International TelecommunicationUnion (ITU) conference later this year in Dubai will include consideration of proposals to grant regulatory control of the Internet to that UN body — a move ITI strongly opposes.  Proposals that have been put forward for consideration in December range from establishment of an “information security” regime that could be used to justify greater Internet censorship and tracking, to regulation of rates for the exchange of Internet traffic that could be used by countries for competitive advantage.
ITI Director of Government Relations Vince Jesaitis commented that the House resolution would send a strong signal to other governments that the Internet is at its best when it is free of government interference.
“E-commerce, free speech, scientific advancements, open sharing of information – the hallmarks of the 21st century Internet would be jeopardized by overzealous attempts by governments to regulate it and bring it under their control.  If successful, such a misguided approach could seize innovation, smother free enterprise, and send a chilling hand to stifle the voice of free speech and expression.
“People around the world rely on the Internet as a primary source of information for how they live their lives.  The web has become an integral part of how we all work, learn, and play.  That tool is best advanced through global collaboration and individual creativity, not heavy-handed government control.  Shifting from this open, consensus-based approach to government-dominated control would stifle market-led competition and rob Internet users of much of the freedom they enjoy online today.
“ITI applauds the bills sponsors and the House Energy and Commerce Committee for their movement on this resolution.  We urge the House of Representatives to send a strong, clear signal to the rest of the world:  Keep the Internet free from government interference.”
About ITI
The Information Technology Industry Council (ITI) is the premier advocacy and policy organization for the world’s leading innovation companies.  ITI navigates the constantly changing relationships between policymakers, companies, and non-governmental organizations, providing creative solutions that advance the development and use of technology around the world.  We develop first-rate advocacy strategies and market-specific approaches.  And we deliver results.  Visit itic.org to learn more.