/// Egypt, Al Gore and the .XXX Domain–Bill Clinton Keynotes ICANN in San Francisco [Voices]

March 17, 2011  |  All Things Digital


By Drake Martinet, Associate Editor, All Things Digital Last night, Bill Clinton–arguably the first Internet President–got a little nostalgic. “We are actually here today because the people sitting in your seats 20 years ago imagined a different world, though they didn’t know exactly how it would come out,” he said in a keynote speech for the 40th meeting of the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers, ICANN, at the Westin St. Francis in San Francisco. “They just knew that a networked world would probably work better than a bureaucratic one.” Yes, indeed, a world that has come a long way from when Clinton was in office. In fact, Clinton noted that to the 800 attendees last night–correctly calling himself “the president at the dawn of the Internet age–that there were only 50 Web sites in 1993 when he was inagurated and 36 million when his terms was up in 2001. Clinton’s speech, a paid appearance, touched on his history with ICANN, the intersection of the Internet, geopolitics, poverty, the global distribution of wealth and infrastructure. ICANN is the multinational, non-governmental organization that researches, debates and enforces decisions that affect how traffic gets sent around the pipes of the Internet. It decides, for instance, that Libyan domain names end in .ly. Clinton main message: Urging the international crowd to try to use technology and their positions around it to build physical and financial infrastructure systems for poorer nations.

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Egypt, Al Gore and the .XXX Domain–Bill Clinton Keynotes ICANN in San Francisco [Voices]


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