Wired: "Legislation is currently going through Congress that would establish oversight of data brokers to help prevent identity theft..."

I'm very surprised that the recent U.S. data privacy breaches haven't received more attention in the ICANN Whois policy development process.

ICANN's GNSO Council, an administrative body tasked with managing the policy development process for generic top-level domains, has convened several task forces over the past five years to deal with the thorny issue of crafting new policies.

The current task force continues to discuss issues such as data accuracy, privileged release of data to law enforcement and accellerated take-down for Intellectual Property and business interests. Unfortunately, no one is discussing the very fundamental issue of whether or not ICANN even ought to be perpetuating the collection, aggregation and release of the personal and private information found in the Whois database. According to the current registrar accreditation agreement, each registrar must cough up its entire customer list to anyone willing to pony up $10k.

Is this the kind of policy that the internet really wants?

I certainly don't.

But I really wonder if the internet community is ready to stop the sell-out to IP interests and start taking back its data.

Personally, I don't think it is. There's a lot of apathy out there - especially when it comes to some of the obtuse matters that ICANN deals with. If the community was ready, we'd see a whole lot of new faces at the policy development table. In the meantime, the Whois database - your personal data - is still in play.

As a member of this task force, I'd love to get your feedback on this issue.